Fall Thanksgiving

How to Make Leaf Print Fall Art

Get ready for fall with a sweet and quick art activity to accompany the book Stories of the Seasons: A Treasury of Nature Stories by Melanie Joyce and Suzanne Fossey. My 4 year old adores this book and had so much fun making her own little acorn. And printing with leaves (or hands for leaves!) is such a fun way to keep painting a little more controlled with your littles and makes for gorgeous textures.

VIDEO TUTORIAL:

THE BOOK

I love how this book includes 4 different stories: “Little Raindrop,” ” Little Bear,” “Little Acorn,” and “Little Snowflake” to cover all the seasons. You buy it knowing you’ll get a lot out it… I know for a fact we will be creating more seasonal projects from this one. AND the illustrations are so darn adorable with the little sweet faces on the characters.

Another plus is the cycle diagram at the end of each story for a strong science tie-in to help children understand how the changing of the seasons works with these elements. It’s really cool.

PREP

  • 12″ x 18″ white paper
  • Tan & brown paper for the acorn
  • Acorn top & bottom templates (optional)
  • Scissors
  • Glue stick
  • Liquid tempera paint: red, orange & lime green (mix green with more yellow and white together)
  • Leaves (or you could do this with handprints for leaves)
  • Flat paint brush
  • Crayons or oil pastels (brown, black & pink)
  • Palette or mixing tray/plate
I mixed paint to make lime by combining a good amount of yellow with a little green and some white to brighten.

In order to make doing these art projects at home with my little girls a reality, I have to prep supplies the night before. It has become part of my routine after making their school lunch. I get the papers stacked and off to the side and place the paints, brushes, leaves, crayons, etc. in a small bin off to the side so that when we finish reading the story, we are ready to go! And it comes together so quickly. One easy session.

CREATE

  1. Print the leaves by painting one color at a time on the leaf you wish to print. Use the flat brush and add a layer of paint to the back of the leaf (the one with the veins).
  2. Print the leaf all around the white paper, reapplying as needed.
  3. Repeat with the other colors.
  4. Trace and cut the acorn shapes from the brown and tan paper.
  5. Using a brown crayon or oil pastel, add straight vertical lines on the brown top. Add black x’s on top of the brown lines.
  6. Add more brown vertical lines onto the tan part of the acorn.
  7. Add eyes, a mouth with black crayon and cheeks with pink.
  8. Glue to background.

You could use whatever colors you like here, but we were inspired by the bright lime green and red/oranges from the book. The bright green just makes the whole thing seem to pop.

I used templates here so my daughter could practice tracing and cutting. You could always just draw these yourself and have them pre-cut ahead of time.

If leaves aren’t really an option for you, handprints are ADORABLE as leaves too.

Wherever you are, we hope you can celebrate this beautiful season of fall right along with us.

If you enjoyed this book and/or story time art, please tag us on Instagram: @picturebooksandpeonies or #picturebooksandpeonies or leave a comment below. We’d love to hear from you!

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