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Hartselle Enquirer

I’m ready for fall

Although it isn’t currently, hopefully soon it will begin to feel like fall. I am beginning to think I live in the land of perpetual summer. I love summer – until the kids have to go back to school.

When they have to return to school, it just takes all the fun out of hot summer days. So at that point, I’m ready for fall. Of course, the weather just doesn’t seem to care what I’m ready for!

Fall can be such a fun time for family activities. I personally don’t like to camp or hike when it’s hot and there are so many bugs to aggravate me. Once the weather begins to cool off, however, that’s the time I like to be outside.

This is a great opportunity to share time with your kids and you can combine so many little learning activities for little ones at the same time.

For example, when hiking you can talk about the changing colors, see how animals prepare for winter, collect leaves and other nature items for a collage and do many more things.

Fall is also a wonderful time to visit an orchard and discuss what kinds of fall produce are available and then plan a few activities around them.

For example, apples are a wonderful fruit to eat or to use in fun activities. Of course, there’s the traditional apple pie, apple cobblers and apple turnovers. There’s also painting with apples or carving them and letting them dry. Traditionally, you carve faces, but it’s fun to carve the apples in different ways and then predict what you think they will look like when they dry.

Don’t forget to make some homemade applesauce, too. Fall also wouldn’t be complete for me without some hot apple cider as well.

This is also a great time to do a taste test with a variety of apples. A wonderful activity is to give a child 3-5 different types of sliced apples and ask the kids to describe them.

Remind the kids to think about how it feels in their mouth (texture) along with how it tastes and looks. This is a good activity to build vocabulary skills.

You can also combine a little history by talking about what pilgrims and pioneers did to prepare for winter.

This is wonderful time to discuss how people managed without things like refrigerators and grocery stores.

The Little House on the Prairie books discuss several times about the Ingalls preparing for winter.

Of course, the most important part of this is spending time with your children. I know it’s a busy time of year, but nowadays any time of the year is a busy time of the year!

I find too often we provide so many activities for our children, that we forget it’s important to just spend time with them and listen to their “chatter.”