It’s Harvest Time! A time for celebration and ceremonies. Throughout the world there are many traditions with all centering on a time of praise for the harvesting of crops.
In the US some celebrate the Harvest at Thanksgiving and others celebrate the entire fall season with festivals and corn mazes. In Britain, celebrations include singing, praying and decorating churches with baskets of fruit and food which is later divided and given to people of need. Christians around the world use the time as one to be thankful for the provisions from God. The Jewish religion celebrates Sukkot, also known as the Feast of Tabernacles or the Feast of Ingathering. In Poland, the Dożynki is a time when Polish land proprietors organized harvest festivals for their laborers. The Mehregan, is a time to honor the Persian Goddess Mehr, the Goddess of Light, Love, Knowledge, Truth, Covenant, Commitment, Strength, and Peace. Mehregan is celebrated at the beginning of autumn and compliments the annual harvest and is also celebrated as the Persian Thanksgiving or Harvest festival.
Where ever you are crafts are a great way to include Kids in the celebration and teach them why we hold the festivals. Below are some kids harvest crafts that are easy and a great way to include children in the celebration.
Harvest Kids Craft 1: The Cornucopia.
This symbol of the harvest encompasses many crops and burst with the colors of the season. You can find many outlines online for use. The picture I used was found at kidprintables.com. Use construction paper and glue to turn your harvest cornucopia into a mosaic craft for kids.
To get started find your cornucopia outline grab some glue, a sheet of thin, plain white paper (if tracing) otherwise white construction paper and one sheet of black construction paper along with sheets of varying colors torn, not cut, into pieces.
If your an artist draw your own cornucopia onto white construction paper. Other options include tracing an outline onto the whiter paper or using your printout. For a framed effect you can glue your picture onto a piece of black construction paper, this will also sturdy your harvest cornucopia so it doesn’t tear as easy if your children use a little too much glue when decorating. If you start with the brown for the horn you can layer some of your items over the horn and if you choose you can create a shadow effect at the top edge of the horn with pieces of black paper.
Harvest Kids Craft 2: The Corn Cob.
What would a harvest be without corn? You will need green craft foam, around 5 cotton balls per cob, yellow paint (preferably acrylic), craft glue and a paint brush.
To begin this harvest craft by tear the cotton balls into small pieces and roll them between your fingers to form kernels. Cut the green foam into oblong shapes to form the ears. Coat a small portion of the ear with glue and cover with the kernels. Continue in small sections until the entire center of the ear is covered with kernels. Now use the yellow paint to color the kernels. Make sure the paint brush is full but not dripping. After a couple of hours you may need to add a little a more paint as the cotton balls absorb the moisture.
You can alter this harvest craft by changing it to Indian Corn. Simply use tan foam for the ear and add shades of brown, orange and burgundy for the kernels.
Harvest Craft 3: Indian Teepee Place Holder
A great way to include kids is to let them make teepee placeholders for your dinner guest. Find a template to trace such as the one on http://www.enchantedlearning.com/crafts/na/teepee/. When considering the template you are going to use remember to adjust it for the size you would like your placeholder to be.
You will need a brown bag or construction paper, 3 to 5 sticks (or tall toothpicks), tape or glue, some string and paints or crayons to decorate your teepee. Using the template of your choice cut out your teepee making sure to have faintly penciled lines where your teepee will bend. Place your guest name above the opening of the teepee and begin decorating each section. If you use paint allow it to dry and then assemble your teepee. If you like you can make varying sizes to use as centerpieces and decorations throughout the house.
Harvest Craft 4: Corn Ring Napkin Holders
How better to accent your harvest table than with corn ring napkin holders. For this simple harvest craft all you need is glue, a few toilet paper or paper towel rolls and colored tissue paper (yellow or shades of brown, orange and burgundy for Indian Corn).
Simply cut your rolls 1.5 to 2 inches wide. Tear your tissue paper into small pieces and glue them onto the roll. You can dress this up by using cotton balls and paint instead of tissue paper. Simply tear your cotton balls into small pieces and roll between your fingers to form kernels. Glue the kernels to the roll and then dab paint onto them. Be sure your brush is wet but not dripping. Allow to dry for a couple of hours and add any touch up paint as needed.
When it is time to set your harvest table place your rings around your napkins to dress up the table and don’t forget your teepee place holder!
Harvest Craft 5: Paper BowlPumpkin
Making a pumpkin has never been so easy. Grab a Styrofoam or paper bowl and turn it upside down. Now get some orange paint (and some brown to create a realistic effect) and paint your bowl. To dress it up a little buy some green/brown felt to form a stem the stem and some paper ribbon to put a bow at the top!