Arts & Crafts
Fall Leaves Placemat
Submitted by: Linda O
A nature walk to observe and collect colorful fall leaves provides material for a craft that utilizes fine motor skills, math and principals of art to create a useful placemat.
24 - 60 months
1 - 4 tots
- 1 piece Cardboard (Lightweight cardboard or heavyweight art paper)
- 2 pieces Contact paper (Clear)
- 1 Ruler
- 1 bottle Glue
- 1 bunch Dried leaves
- 1 Brick (Weight for drying leaves)
- 4 Paper Towels
- 1 Cookie sheets
- Begin with a nature walk or a garden tour.
- Discuss the change in seasons and how deciduous trees lose their leaves.
- Have your child collect colorful leaves.
- Place leaves, in a single-layer, on sheets of paper towels. Cover with more paper towels and a brick to eliminate curling as leaves dry.
- Either allow the leaves to dry for 10 days, or place leaves on a cookie sheet in a low temperature (200') oven for 90 minutes.
- Select placemat foundation material (cardboard or art paper) and cut to desired size.
- Cut one piece of clear contact paper the same size as foundation piece. This will be the final backing.
- Cut a second piece of clear contact-paper 2" wider all the way around. This will be the cover.
- Cut the corners from contact-paper cover.
- Have your child write their name and the date on the cardboard.
- Have your child arrange their leaves to cover the cardboard or create pattern on the cardboard.
- Secure leaves with a tiny spot of craft glue so they don't shift.
- Peel backing from cover sheet of clear contact-paper.
- Assist your child in carefully placing the contact paper over the leaf covered cardboard.
- Have your child press to secure.
- Flip the cardboard and secure the 2" borders onto the back.
- Peel backing from the clear-contact paper cut for the back of the placemat and attach.
- Enjoy using your beautiful new placemat!
- Fine motor skills » Hand eye coordination
- Self help » Eating
- Gross motor skills » Walking
- Cognitive development » Mathematics » Patterns
- Cognitive development » Mathematics » Measurement & comparison
- Cognitive development » Mathematics » Number concepts & quantities