Most of the snow has melted off and we have been going outdoors a lot more. Z (3 years old) is also starting to ask questions like when can he go on his scooter and bicycle, and my answer is “in the summer,” so he’s gradually becoming more aware of the concept of seasons. To top it off, we have been doing our daily calendar work which requires him to check the weather every day, and he is noticing some changes outside.
With these observations, I figured now is the perfect time to learn more about seasons.
Note: In my Montessori albums (KHT), learning about seasons fall under History. Lessons that involve the concept of time, including calendar and time learning lessons, all fall under History.
Reading about seasons
We started off with a book that Grandma bought us, First Facts Seasons.
It has a very clean and informative first page that shows the differences in the ground and tree through the seasons, and that made it easy for Z to understand the cycle of the seasons. (He does very well with going from left to right from all our Montessori work, so he knows that when he reaches winter, he just needs to cycle back to the first season which is spring.)
Making seasons cards – fingerprint art
It was very easy for Z to identify the differences in the seasons just by looking at the pictures of the trees in the book. I thought of printing some 3-part cards for him to do some matching work, but to be honest I’m still struggling with the role of 3-part cards in our home. But I have no problems letting a child create his own materials, so I decided to let him make his own 3-part cards instead.
I find that when he makes his own cards and they are displayed on the shelf, he has something to be proud of. (Of course some 3-part cards will be very difficult to make on their own.)
Furthermore, just the act of painting those cards with different colors is already a hands-on lesson in and of itself. During the process of painting, he kept asking me questions like “What colors should the leaves in this card be?”, “What is the name of this season?”, “Why do we need to paint on the ground?”, “Why are the leaves white?” (It’s snow, not leaves.)
At first, I outlined the spring card with green, and summer with yellow-green. But the leaves were to be the opposite colors. He kept questioning me and telling me that it’s wrong. I’m amazed to observe the need for order in a 3-6 year old. I finally made a couple of new blank tree trunks with matching outline colors.
What we used:
- Watercolor paper (or regular cardstock will do)
- Washable paint (we used regular paint, but Crayola has specific finger paint too)
- Cut the paper into the desired size. Cut a small strip to write the names of the seasons.
- Outline the card for each season with a different colored marker.
- Draw the tree trunk and branches.
- Mix the paint colors needed for all the seasons. I used yellow-green for spring, green for summer, orange and red for fall, and white to represent snow in the winter.
- Let your child fingerprint paint!
I have uploaded a free printable for you if you would like to do this activity with your child. I left the labels blank so that you can write them in your own language.
With these simple activities, Z has a good general idea about all 4 seasons. I keep his cards in a simple basket together with his books so he can pull them out to work on or discuss them whenever he likes.
Linking up to: Learn & Play Link Up