And just like that, it’s autumn! Those long summer days are sadly behind us, but with all the delights of autumn, there’s not really any reason to be sad. So reach for the wellies, unfurl your little one’s adorable little duffle coat and let’s get crunching those golden leaves! Today we share a few ideas that can help you make the most of autumn with your baby, whether you are indoors or out.
Many families love autumn because there are just so many great outdoor activities to do. Before we start with activity suggestions, it’s worth just remembering that babies can get very cold outdoors very quickly, so always take extra care to keep them wrapped up warm including with hats and mittens even when you as an adult wouldn’t be wearing them. Also, as mornings can be very crisp, outdoor activities in the afternoon can avoid everyone getting too cold. As long as you dress warmly, you are sure to have a great time!
The obvious activity for autumn is going on a walk. Walking outdoors during autumn is wonderfully calming, and that’s something your little one can sense too. The freshness of the air, the sound of the birds singing and the rustle of the leaves beneath your feet are all things that can be very stimulating for babies. To make it more fun for them, show them how to crunch the leaves underfoot if they are able to stand themselves, and if they are not, let them touch some of the larger leaves, and feel the texture (being careful to avoid them going near their mouths). There are an increasing number of large forest areas and country estates (many of them managed by the National Trust) that offer autumn colour trails. Walking along one of these trails is a wonderful way for you to enjoy some fresh air, and your baby to enjoy a very fun lesson about colours.
Another simple activity that is really fun is picking conkers together. Even if your little one is quite young, they can still participate, and if they have older siblings, it can be very lively! Most parks and forests have chestnut trees, and just the action of searching and locating conkers can be very exciting. It’s a great way to teach your baby about teamwork, and they can get very excited.
It may seem that by now picnic season is over, but with a nice picnic basket, plenty of blankets and maybe even a few hot drinks, autumn picnics can be very fun. Combine with a few of the activities mentioned above and you have the perfect outing.
With outdoors being a bit cooler and wetter in autumn, it’s great to have a few good indoor activities to enjoy. Having autumn-themed activities is even better! When you go out for a walk, you can try and collect some of the most vibrant leaves you find and bring them home. You will then have a wonderful ingredient to work with for all manner of interesting and fun activities.
Sensory activities are a really good idea for babies of all ages and autumn provides some exciting new elements to work with. Using leaves, conkers and acorns collected from your wonderful outdoor walks, you can create sensory bottles will really capture the imagination of your little one. Tell them about each of the things in the bottle or pouch and let them listen to the sounds of the leaves rustling and the other objects moving around. Leaves can also be put in clear pouches or Ziplock bags for your baby to play with during tummy time, this is especially useful if your baby is at the stage where everything is likely to be put in their mouth.
For another simple yet fun activity, place autumn themed items around the room and enjoy searching for them with your little one. It’s great to have a few simple activities up your sleeve that will help you to have precious time with your baby, while not stressing you out with too much prep.
Autumn really is a wonderful time of year for the whole family. So while the weather isn’t too cold, and there’s so many beautiful golden leaves around to look at (and crunch!), make the most of your time with your little one. Having a few simple ideas and activities planned will certainly make this autumn one to remember.