My favorite fall leaves craft project can be made with paper bags, paper plates, bond paper, or durable foam sheets, available at the Dollar Store in a pack of twenty, with various colors in the pack. Always interchangeable, the pattern can also be used to make seasonal hanging ornaments or decorations. This is the time to solicit bits and pieces of decoration from friends, which will add to the choices kids have when creating their masterpiece.
This project is great for any age. I recommend the leaves be precut for children through the first grade; safety scissors can be used for children above that age. Adults and upper teens are usually trustworthy with sharp scissors.
Design one or several leaf patterns, if you want variety in size and shape. Stencil the shape for those who will be cutting their own leaf, or use the template yourself, if you are precutting the leaves.
Here is a helpful hint to determine who gets what color/shape for their activity: If you have five different leaves, assign each leaf a number. If there are six of each type, make six small tags of paper with one, two, three, four, and five. Put the numbers in a bag or can; each child draws a paper. The number he or she gets will determine the leaf assigned for the activity.
What you need
Paper or foam sheets for the leaves
Small chips of construction paper to use in place of, or with, glitter
Bits of ribbon
Small pictures to put on the leaves; for one of my second-grade classes, some of the kids opted to use one of their small school pictures.
Paper towel or plate to do the craft on, easing the cleanup process.
Use group areas if there are many children and limited glue and decoration items. Each artist should select the decorations wanted on his or her leaf.
Apply craft glue to areas where glitter will be applied, and sprinkle the glitter on the leaf. Shake the leaf gently to return the loose glitter to the paper towel or plate, to be used again. Gently blow any stubborn glitter off the leaf. Let the leaf sit for a moment while the glitter adheres to the glue.
Carefully apply any other desired decoration, trying not to disturb the glittered areas. Let dry and enjoy the leaves.
If you want the leaves to hang as ornaments or decorations, make a hole using a single- hole paper punch towards the top of the leave. Put yarn or fishing line through the hole and tie the two ends together with a knot.
Clean up time should be easy with this project.
I hope that you enjoy this project as much as I do. You can create beautiful things to give as gifts and use as decorations. Happy Thanksgiving!
The above craft idea is based on an idea of the author many years ago, although leaves are common items in many craft projects.