By Jeanie McLoughlin
Go outdoors and collect fallen leaves and seeds from different trees. Bring the leaves and seeds indoors and have your child sort them.
Take a walk with your child in your neighborhood or a park and collect fallen leaves from a variety of trees. If you can find them, also collect seeds (such as acorns, pine cones or eucalyptus pods) from the trees. Talk to your child about the trees and the seasonal change. Discuss how deciduous trees lose their leaves while evergreen trees keep their leaves year-round. Enjoy the outdoors and exercise. (Note: Make sure to avoid poison oak, sumac, etc.) Once you get home, sort the leaves and seeds by color, shape and size. This helps your child develop observational skills such as sorting and classifying. Help your child build her vocabulary by learning the names of a variety of trees, moving from the general (tree) to more specific (oak, maple, ash, pine.) Ask her questions such as: