Most people have a favourite season, and a recent poll put autumn ahead with 40 per cent of the vote. It’s easy to see why with nature’s beautiful symphony of rich, autumnal hues showcased in soft, dappled sunlight, with just a hint of a fresh chill in the air. There’s also the bounty of pears, plums and apples for the pantry. No wonder it’s traditionally a time of quiet gratitude and celebration.
For children, nothing heralds the start of autumn more than collecting conkers and kicking those colourful piles of leaves along the pavement – in fact, anything that makes the most of the big outdoors before the nights really draw in. With this in mind, now’s the perfect time to take an autumnal nature walk, perhaps exploring a nearby wood. By now, they’ll be full of vibrant colour and even food to forage, such as sweet chestnuts, elderberries and fennel seeds.
Explain to your child how the shorter days and cooler weather cause the leaves to change colour, and encourage her to take on the role of a nature detective, spotting sights such as acorns, leaf skeletons, mushrooms and pine cones. Take a paper treasure bag along for your child to fill with her favourite finds. Then, when you get home, she can turn them into an autumn art project. Yellow, brown and red leaves can be assembled to make a colourful wall mural, while pine cones can be turned into some crazy characters with a few daubs of paint.
This article previously appeared in Junior magazine as a print article