Background paper and border (I used construction paper and craft scissors to create the scalloped edges on my border)
Construction paper (brown, green, red, and additional colors)
Scissors ( I used craft scissors to create the scalloped edges on my border, as well as regular scissors for cutting)
Colors, seasonal concepts, understanding of time/days of the week
Age: I’m doing this with my 22 month old; however this activity is likely more appropriate for the preschool-kindergarten age child
Instructions: (Please note that the actual craft idea is meant for completion by an adult or an older child.)
Choose a background color from the construction paper (not red, green or brown) and cover the entire board (if you’ve a small board…if you have a large board for classroom use, you can use whatever background cover you have already selected) by affixing the papers with staples. Using a ruler and marker to evenly measure the width of the borders, take the craft scissors and cut sufficient strips to surround the edge of the bulletin board. I selected a yellow background with an orange border for an autumnal effect. When positioning the borders, you will likely overlap at the corners, and depending on the size of your board, along the shorter edges. Use staples to affix. (Please note that staples pose a choking hazard to small children and use caution accordingly).
Cut a piece of brown construction paper on the short side, trimming about ¼ of the paper away on the top. Round the bottom edges of the remaining ¾ page to create a barrel look on the bottom. Line up a second piece of brown paper on the back of the “barrel” shape and trim the bottom edge to match the barrel; leave the top portion of the second paper higher than the “barrel” shaped paper. You will stack the barrel in front of the second brown paper when affixing to the board to create a pocket for your apples. I used a glue stick to fuse the paper together prior to stapling the barrel pocket to the board. Using the marker, I drew vertical curved lines to create the look of a barrel, and also created a “rim” shape at the top of the barrel where I wrote: “An apple a day…September Days.” If you are really finicky and prefer a clean look to a handmade look, you can type the text on your computer, print and cut and paste onto your barrel.
Using craft scissors, cut out a green pocket from green construction paper (an alternate idea is to cut out a green tree top and also a brown trunk; you can affix the green tree top to the board, leaving the top unattached to create a pocket). I did not have a sufficiently sized board to create the tree. Affix the green pocket to the board with staples, leaving the top open to create the pocket.
Draw and cut out 7 (or additional apples, if you want to use them for further decoration on your board). If you can’t draw an apple, Google an image, print and trace. Using the marker, on each apple, print a day of the week. I drew two smaller apples to represent Saturday and Sunday as I want to help my daughter start to countdown the days until Daddy is home for the weekend! Place these apples in the green tree pocket. I wrote “Pick an Apple” on the green pocket and decorated it with a fall leave stamp I happened to have.
I also created a header: “September,” as well as an apple that says “Fall” to provide more seasonal information to my little one.
Each day, as part of your daily routine, have your child select the appropriate day apple (I stack them in order, but for older kids, you can have them try to read the words to pick) from the “tree” and place it in the “barrel”. This way, they countdown the day of the week! Also, they learn about apple picking as a fall harvest practice. Talk about the season: Fall or Autumn and things that happen in Autumn: harvest, apple picking, back to school for big kids. Name the month and start to talk in simple terms about how a month is 28-31 days and we have 12 months in a year. For older kids, you can provide a more detailed explanation. My daughter V, loves to pick her daily apple and even has been caught in climbing attempts to reach the bulletin board (we have ours hung higher on the wall to prevent her from reaching staples as she is still very small). So consider your child and potential safety hazards when hanging your board! Stay tuned for monthly update ideas for your seasonal bulletin board!