Use this guide to plan your perfect fall with your toddler. Full of toddler activities for fall including toddler friendly fall crafts, autumn books and seasonal food favorites.
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Why Fall is a Great Time of Year for Toddlers
The hot days of summer have come to an end and the cooler weather is coming. Fun holidays like Halloween and Thanksgiving are on the horizon and this brings about opportunity to expose to your toddler to new things.
Gets Them Outside
Experts recommend that toddlers have at least 3 hours of outside time everyday. Fall makes it easy to go outside for longer periods of time without worrying about overheating. Depending on where you live, you can go pick seasonal fall fruit, like apples, or head out to a farm and run through a corn maze.
Outdoor Fall Activities With Toddlers
1. Apple Picking – tip: bring some water and fruit spray because everyone will want to eat straight from the tree, but the apples could have dirt and other residue on them
2. Visit a Farm – go for a hayride, run through a corn maze
3. Go to a Pumpkin Patch – pick up a few small pumpkins for activities later (example, let your toddler paint them)
4. Go the Zoo – fall has less crowds and it will be cooler outdoors.
5. Rake leaves – then jump in piles of leaves
6. Decorate – the outside of your house for Halloween or Thanksgiving
7. Walk in the woods/Go for a Hike – Pick up leaves along the way for some of the crafts below
Outdoor Fall Toddler Toys
Here are a few fall specific toys that your 2 or 3 year old will love and will encourage them to stay outside a little longer.
Rake – Pick up a cute toddler rake that is height and weight appropriate for them to use while helping you rake up some leaves. This one on Amazon has high ratings and is designed for little one. See it here.
Wheelbarrow – Toddlers love helping, with this adorable red wheelbarrow they can load it up with leaves and other garden trimmings and follow you around the garden. See it on Amazon here.
Trampoline – This trampoline can be used inside or outside. In fall take it outside and encourage them to stay outdoors a little longer. With fall leaves all around you can take some cute photos too! See it on Amazon here.
New Sensory & Gross Motor Activities
Fall can provide some great sensory and gross motor skill opportunities. Pulling out the seeds of a pumpkin and learning to use a rake are two examples of getting your toddler physically involved in fall.
Our Favorite Fall Toddler Activities
This simple activity uses contact paper and dollar store leaves. It will leave behind a beautiful fall scene on your window for the season. Use real leaves if you have an older toddler and they can be gentle enough.
How to Make Easy DIY Pumpkin Slime With Your Kids
PHOTO CREDIT: www.newmomat40.com
Did someone say pumpkin slime? This extra gooey, extra fun slime is a great way to use up the “guts” of your pumpkin. Keep an eye on your toddler with this one, but oh so fun!
Apple Scented Cloud Dough: Fall Sensory Play
PHOTO CREDIT: www.gracegigglesandnaptime.com
This cloud dough has a special fall addition – its apple scented! This is a great toddler activity to play outside while the weather is still nice.
Teaching Gratitude with an Easy Thankful Tree
PHOTO CREDIT: team-cartwright.com
This easy toddler fall activity can be created all season long depending on how big you want the tree. This is a great activity to teach gratitude during the weeks leading up to Thanksgiving. Best for older toddlers.
Toddler Fall Crafts
You can’t spend all day outside so when it’s time to come indoors and warm up pick from any of the crafts below to spend some quality time together.
Kids Fall Pennant to Celebrate Fall
PHOTO CREDIT: www.cookiescoffeeandcrafts.com
For the toddler who loves stickers, these pennants can be used as fall decor around the house and centerpieces for Thanksgiving.
Leaf Suncatcher Craft
PHOTO CREDIT: www.thebestideasforkids.com
These leaf sun catchers will brighten up your room all fall long. These require some prep and help from mom or dad, but toddlers will enjoy sticking the tissue paper and will love that their art is showcased for everyone to see afterwards.
Leaf Suncatcher Craft – Easy Autumn Crafts for Kids
PHOTO CREDIT: www.messylittlemonster.com
Another suncatcher, but this one is used with real leaves. This craft is perfect after you’ve been outside in the morning. You can pick out the perfect colorful leaves with your toddler and let them dry out during nap then put them together in the afternoon.
Tie-Dye Thanksgiving Turkey Craft for Toddlers
PHOTO CREDIT: livingforthesunshine.com
A toddler and a spray bottle of water? Yes please! This unique craft can be turned into place cards for family on the big day.
Toddler fall crafts can also be placed around the house to add to fall decor or can be used in Thanksgiving centerpieces or used as name place cards at the holiday table. Friends and family will love the personal touches.
Toddler Fall Books
Books are a great way to teach your 2 or 3 year old about fall holidays. And it’s nice to add a few new titles to your collection to keep things interesting at bedtime. These fall toddler books were selected based on our own experience with them or chosen based on the highest Amazon reviews. Enjoy!
Tree: A Peek-Through Picture Book
Goodbye Summer, Hello Autumn
Five Silly Turkeys
The Itsy Bitsy Pumpkin
Duck & Goose, Find a Pumpkin (Oversized Board Book)
Eek! Halloween! (Boynton on Board)
Toddler Fall Favorite Recipes
Your toddler may be in the middle of a picky eater phase, but that is the perfect time to try fall food.
Pumpkin, Apples and Squash are in season and the mild flavor can be added to recipes without them knowing or they can become favorites and they be center stage.
Pumpkin Pancake Bites with Chocolate Chips
PHOTO CREDIT: momfoodie.com
A great way to introduce new foods is to add them to recipes toddlers are already familiar with. These fun pancake bites add pumpkin to be a fall friendly breakfast or snack.
PHOTO CREDIT: grandbaby-cakes.com
This sweet treat works for your toddler and the entire family around Halloween or Thanksgiving. Your toddler can involved in the baking by helping to measure out the ingredients. You can even let them decorate a few.
Apple Pie Roll Ups
PHOTO CREDIT: www.thehappierhomemaker.com
After your apple picking trip you can make these roll ups for your toddler. They will love that they helped pick the apples and will love the apple pie flavor.
Butternut Squash Alfredo Pasta
PHOTO CREDIT: www.babaganosh.org
For a non-sweet meal, this butternut squash pasta is creamy and has the hidden veggie in it that our toddlers sometimes need to try something new. Squash is in season so a great time to have a hearty pasta for dinner.
Other fall traditions you can try:
Drink some hot chocolate
Carve a pumpkin
Go for a fall walk in the woods
Conclusion: Everything Fall for Toddlers: Crafts, Activities, Food & Books
Sweater weather is here and your toddler is about to have so much fun this fall with the help of the above ideas. I would love to see your fall photos – you can find me on instagram at instragram.com/mominthesix