Leaf Impressions

Today the home learners group that Thing 1 inspired me to create, meet today for another fun learning activity.  The leaves are finally starting to change colors and fall off the trees here in North Texas and the weather has been beautiful.  So we meet at a local park where we then headed out on a nature walk.

Supplies:

salt dough (1 cup salt, 2 cups flour, 1 cup of water)
bags
paper plates
dough rollers
leaves, flowers, etc..

Activity:

First we headed out onto a local trail and let the kids collect.  They collected leaves and flowers.  A few (Thing 1 and Thing 2) collected sticks and acorns.  We also saw a small snake on our walk.  Each kiddo had a bag to hold their treasures.

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Once we were done collecting or really we told the kids we done collecting we headed back to the park.  Since it was noon, we ate lunch first.  It is all about priorities with the kids.

Once lunch was over, I provided each kid with a paper plate and some salt dough.  They then worked hard rolling the dough flat.  The rolling pins really came in handy because they helped with the rolling process but also smoothed out the dough so that we had a nice smooth surface for making impressions.

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After the dough was pretty thin and smooth, we helped the kids place leaves into the dough.  We found that using the rolling pins on top of the leaves helped make the impressions a little more uniformed.  Then the kids would pull the leaves up and we could see the prints. 

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Thing 1 really enjoyed the project.  He took his time and worked hard to make his impressions work.  Thing 2 never really got around to putting leaves into his salt dough, instead he finished eating and then stuck his trains into the dough.

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Taking the activity further:

To take the activity further you can work on classifying the different leaves that you have collected.  Leaves can be classified, by shapes, vein patterns, edges, the tip of the leaf, the bottom of the leaf, whether it is simple or compound, and so on. 

We are actually going to go into a little more detail about the different types of leaves next week as our science study.  I am excited and yes I am kind of weird like that.

What have you done with leaves?  

Linked up at Outdoor Play Party at Momma Pea Pod.

 

 

18 Responses to Leaf Impressions

  1. [...] we meet with some of the members of our home learners group to go on a nature walk and then make impressions of the leaves, flowers and such that the kids had found on our walk.  Both boys loved the walk [...]

  2. Will it dry so you can paint it later, or is this an ephemeral process?

    • You can set it out for a couple of days and it will eventually dry or you can bake it at 250 degrees for about 2 hours and it will dry out. Then you can paint them or whatever. You can use a clear acrylic sealer.

      I have used salt dough to put my kids foot/handprints in to hang and to make Christmas ornaments. It is so simple and easy.

      Mommy Cameron

  3. Oh, this is fantastic! Would love for you to come link this up to the Outdoor Play Party!

  4. Thanks for linking up to Science Sunday! We haven’t had any leaves falling here really to do anything with, but I like the idea of doing leaf impressions in the salt dough.

  5. Love this idea! What fun my girls would have with this.
    Thanks so much for linking up to the outdoor play party!

  6. I love that you took the salt dough with you to the park and did the whole thing outdoors! And how exciting to find a snake too :)

    Thanks for linking up to the Outdoor Play Party! Hope to see you back next week.

  7. What a fun idea! Thomas imprints as well ;-) Thank you for sharing your ideas with us on The Sunday Showcase

  8. [...] boys and I had a lot of fun this year, but one of my favorite activities was our nature walk and leaf impression playdate that we hosted with our newly formed home learners [...]

  9. [...] boys and I had a lot of fun this year, but one of my favorite activities was our nature walk and leaf impression playdate that we hosted with our newly formed home learners [...]

  10. Happy New Year! I’m visiting from a linky party about your favourite posts. I love getting outside with my boys too. We get so many leaves here so we’ll have to try making leaf prints next fall. Come visit us http://raisingourfamily.blogspot.com

  11. What a cool post! I love it very much :)
    Happy New year
    Angelique

  12. My son loves to gather leaves. This a great idea of an activity I can use them for!

    Stopping from the Kid Bloggers Hop!

  13. [...] “treasures” they find along the way. The boys have used their treasures to make things like leaf impressions and art [...]

  14. [...] impressions. Bring a bag and collect different types of leaves. When you get home make a batch of salt dough to press your leaves into so that you are left with the leaf impression. Once the salt dough dries, [...]

  15. [...] impressions. Bring a bag and collect different types of leaves. When you get home make a batch of salt dough to press your leaves into so that you are left with the leaf impression. Once the salt dough dries, [...]

  16. Hi! I just wanted to send a quick Thank You for the great salt dough recipe that I used with my toddler this summer! She really enjoyed it, and it was perfect as a play-doh substitute while we were on vacation.

    Here’s a post about what we did:
    http://unschooltheteacher.blogspot.com/2013/07/montessori-ocean-activities.html

    Thanks again!!

  17. […] impressions. Bring a bag and collect different types of leaves. When you get home make a batch of salt dough to press your leaves into so that you are left with the leaf impression. Once the salt dough dries, […]

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