Set out this gorgeous Autumn colour sorting activity for preschoolers using leaves and coloured glass gems. Open-ended creativity and playful maths game for little ones, plus just so beautiful to play with!
I love collecting tactile objects for loose materials to let the kids play and learn with. We keep spiky pine cones, smooth pebbles, shiny shells and gorgeous glass nuggets in various wooden bowls and baskets for them to use for counting, creative art projects and more.
I recently stumbled across these gorgeous glass nuggets in an array of Autumnal colours via a seller on Amazon, and needed to add them to our collection for the season (and beyond!)
Here is a link to find them for UK/ Aussie readers:
And here are similar ones for US readers:
Green: http://bit.ly/1BTl4ID with more colours to browse on the site.
When they arrived I mixed them all together and popped them in a lovely wooden bowl with wooden scoopers (which I picked up £4 for a pair in Sainsburys recently) to invite them to play with them.
Onto a table top we spread out an array of recently collected leaves, ranging from green to yellow, brown to red in a beautiful natural rainbow!
They then set about sorting through the coloured glass pebbles to match the hues as closely as they could to those found in the leaves, arranging them in their own ways by counting or grouping.
They all loved this activity (ages 2, 4 and 6 years) and Miss 2 was perhaps the most absorbed of al, choosing to spend over half an hour with it, and coming back again later to do more.
The rests were just so stunningly beautiful that I spent a png time watching her, and enjoyed joining in too (when I was allowed to!)
This is a transient creative project because our leaves won’t keep for long, although we are going to try laminating some of them to see if we can preserve those colours a little longer. I’m envisaging this as being a beautiful Spring time project with colourful flowers too.
To see our full PLAYFUL MATHS archives, click the link.
See more NATURE PLAY here.
Our full AUTUMN archives are here.
You can also follow my Natural Play Pinterest board for more open-ended play ideas using nature.
Follow Anna @ The Imagination Tree’s board Nature Play and Creatvity on Pinterest.
What they are learning while they play:
maths: sorting and matching by colour, counting, 1:1 correspondence, grouping
physical: fine motor control, pincer grasp, transferring small objects
[This post contains Amazon affiliate links.]
Melanie @ Offspringers says
A gorgeous idea….I’m going to give this a try!
Enmore Green Childcare says
I love these gems but the link to the UK supplier is missing and I’m having no luck browsing Amazon! Thanks for the ideas as always 🙂
Sam Price says
What a calming and stimulating invitation to play Anna. My daughter will love it as she adores loose object play and autumn!!!
Glass nuggets are by a seller called hobby island mosaics on amazon and I think what Anna has used is combination of three of the colour ways they do. I just added them to my amazon wish list!!!
Enmore Green Childcare says
Thank you Sam!
Literate For Life (Pamela Hall) says
I just love this activity and the colors. This is so perfect for this age.
This is such a wonderful activity and it provides so many opportunities for learning and making brain connections. Autumn is my favourite time of year too. Nothing beats walking through a pile of fallen leaves.
Anna – may I just say, you’re a genius! I have seen lots of websites on age-appropriate and fun activities for kids but yours is the “awesomest”!!! (made up a word) You are a blessing and inspiration for Early Childhood Educators and moms like me.
Thank you for sharing yourself to the world! 🙂
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