Pretend Play: Raking Autumn Leaves

Pretend Play:  Raking Autumn Leaves ...... a fun fall activity for kids!

This is such a wonderful fall activity!

My girls have had – and are still having – so much fun with this Pretend Play activity of Raking Leaves.

And it’s so simple, too!

I bought 3 bags of 50 leaves each at the dollar store, and we already had the rakes – although I think we bought them at the dollar store in the spring.

Pretend Play:  Raking Autumn Leaves ...... a fun fall activity for kids!

I do suggest using plastic rakes because they’re safer for indoors.  We also have metal and wooden rakes, but plastic worked best for this.

Also, I prefer doing this activity on the carpet, but it does work on the tile and wood floors.  To be honest, though, I found raking the leaves up on carpet with the plastic rake to be somewhat soothing.  Meditative, even.

To store the leave we use a basket that we already had, but you could also use a plastic baggy.  {That’s what I plan to store them in at the end of fall.}

Pretend Play:  Raking Autumn Leaves ...... a fun fall activity for kids!

Another thing these leaves are perfect for is throwing.

Rake up a pile and toss them into the air!

Seriously:  these are made of fabric, so they kind of flutter down gently.  The whole reason I decided to do this with my kids is because they adore the Elefun Game so much.  And, really, the Elefun game isn’t perfect.  The butterflies/fireflies come out too quickly and there aren’t enough of them, but my girls still love catching them AND collecting them afterwards.

But that’s why I bought 150 leaves for this activity – so there would be enough to entertain both of them.  Plenty to keep them busy with raking and throwing.

And organizing.

My 4yo would make piles of the leaves, sorting them by color and counting them.  And my 2yo made piles that were her “birds nests.”

The options are limitless.

Pretend Play:  Raking Autumn Leaves ...... a fun fall activity for kids!

And, like I said, this activity can be extremely affordable.  I already had the rakes and the basket, and I bought the 3 bags of leaves for a buck a piece at the Dollar Tree.  The plastic rakes can also be found in the outdoor toy section or garden section of places like Target or Kmart even Walgreens – at certain times of the year.

BUT, if you’re having trouble finding the items you need, here are some Decorative Fall Leaves and a Gardening Tool Set from Amazon:

Decorative Fabric Fall LeavesPlastic Gardening Tool Set for Kids

And please let me know if your Little Ones enjoy it – and if they come up with any games of their own!

And check out these other Pretend Play ideas, too:

Pretend Play:  Makeup

Pretend Play:  Post Office and Mail Carrier

Roaming Rosie Signature

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Practice Measuring with Rice

Pretend Cooking And Practice Measuring With Rice Activity For Kids

This is one of those activities I love:  easy to set up, great for learning, and free.

That’s a hard-to-beat combination.  :)

Anyway, while busy in the kitchen/laundry room, I set this up for my girls and was amazed at how involved they became.  We’ve done similar things with dried pasta, but we hadn’t used rice for anything in awhile.

I put two large, two medium, and two small bowls on an old cookie sheet.  I provided two small measuring cups and two measuring spoons, and dumped some rice into the two big bowls.  Then I stepped back.

There was measuring, scooping, pouring, touching, and a general sense of busyness.

And silence.

It was so strange.  I’m not used to my 2yo and 4yo sitting so quietly together for so long.  But they were involved in their project.  There wasn’t even any arguing.  No “she’s touching me!”

Just concentration.

It didn’t last forever, of course.  Eventually the 2-year-old discovered that the rice made a neat sound as it sprinkled out over the tile floor, and so I wasn’t really able to keep and reuse most of the rice as I’d hoped.

But it was worth it.

Roaming Rosie Signature

Blustery Day Water Play

Blustery Day Water Play

Some days it’s just too cold and windy and blustery to play outside.

But we needed something to keep busy, and we’d already blown up the small pool the night before when we didn’t realize the sun wouldn’t be showing it’s face today.

So:  water play.

We moved the pool indoors to the dining room.  I filled two large plastic bowls with water, and placed them inside the pool.  Then collected as many measuring cups and spoons and general gadgets (whisks, funnels, mesh strainers) as I could find, and tossed them in the pool, too.

Then, I let the girls have at it.

Blustery Day Water Play

Blustery Day Water Play

Blustery Day Water Play

It was a great way to spend the afternoon.

I had to refill the large bowls a couple of times since most of the water ended up in the bottom of the pool anyway, but that’s the reason I had them wear swimsuits.

I kept towels nearby to clean up spills that splashed onto the dining room floor and also to wrap them in when they’d had enough.  But they spent so much time measuring and scooping and experimenting with the water to make setting it all up more than worthwhile.  We’ll be doing this again.

This activity can also easily be done in the bathtub if you don’t have a little, blow-up or plastic pool.  Or, if it’s a nice day outside, them you can just provide the bowls and tools spread out across the grass or a patio.

Either way, a fun yet educational (and basically free) way to keep your little ones entertained!

Pretend Play: Makeup

pretend play make up compact for kids

I’m a big fan of pretend play.  I mean, kids do it anyway on their own, and it’s just so much fun to watch them play with toys you helped create.  For example, I made a whole set of post office/letter carrier pretend play items.

And my girls love pretending to put on makeup.  I don’t wear a lot, but they always want to put on moisturizer, foundation, powder, or even Chap Stick.

But I don’t really like them to wear actual makeup.  They don’t need to be clogging up their pores at 1 and 3.  And I think it’s important for them to understand that they don’t need it, because they are beautiful without it, BUT they want to be like mommy.  So:  pretend play.

I used one of my old compacts from the Clinique City Base Foundation line, that they no longer make.  I’ve been using it for years, since I’m all about convenience.  They now make something called Even Better Makeup, which is similar, so you could use that, too.

They look like this:

Clinique City Base Compact Foundation (photo: Viewpoints.com)

Clinique Even Better Makeup (photo: Bloomingdales)

I transformed a compact from which all the makeup had been used, cleaning out the remains of the makeup and letting it dry.  Then I cut down some sponges we had on hand (you can pick up makeup sponges at a drug store), using one brown one to represent the makeup and one white one to represent the sponge that comes in the compacts.  That way it would look just like mommy’s compact.

Both girls like to play with it, and there’s no mess!  I’ll be making a second one when I’ve used up my current compact.

Here’s my daughter playing with it (while the post office set is also spread across the floor):

pretend play make up compact for kids