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Fall-themed Process Art Projects for Early Childhood Programs

Oct 17, 2023    |   Fall

It’s that time of year again! The leaves are changing, the air is getting brisk, the days are getting shorter – and it’s starting to feel like Fall. This time of year is rich with vibrantly colored foliage, which creates the perfect backdrop for colorful art projects. In this article, we share some fall-themed process art projects that will inspire creativity as you enjoy soaking in the season with the children in your care. 

What is Process Art?

Process art projects are creative activities that emphasize exploration and the artistic experience. While some art projects are done with a planned outcome, process art projects are distinctive in that they have no intended end product. 

When young children engage in process art experiences, they are encouraged to create freely and to utilize the materials available to them in any way that they’d like. Educators provide support by inviting children to explore, follow their intuition, and use their own uniquely creative approach. 

We hope you enjoy trying some of the process art projects below in your early learning program!   

Fall-themed Process Art Projects

Leaf Painting


This simple activity is a wonderful way to make use of the leaves that have fallen in your yard or neighborhood.  Start by taking young children outside to collect some of the biggest leaves they can find. Then, bring the leaves indoors and set them out on a table (covered with butcher paper or a disposable table cloth) along  with tempera paints and paint brushes. If you have them available, you might also include additional materials like stamps, stencils, or glitter.

Invite children to apply paint to the leaves– getting as creative and colorful as they would like! Once the painted leaves are dry, they can be hung on strings as decor in your classroom, or they can be saved for use as part of a future collaging project

Nature People

Similar to the activity above, this art project is a fun way to use found natural materials from your yard. While playing outdoors, invite children to collect a variety of items from nature such as leaves, pinecones, acorns, and twigs. Once they have their collections, bring the children inside and give each of them a large piece of construction paper and some glue. (To avoid glue messes, pour liquid glue into small paper cups for children to use and give each child a set of Q-tips. Encourage the children to dip Q-tips into the cups of glue so they can use them to spread glue onto their paper. This helps to eliminate large dumped globs of glue on the page!) 

Invite the children to create their own nature people by using the items from nature to make bodies, hands, feet, and faces! Little ones can use the  glue to stick the items onto their paper. Notice how differently everyone’s nature person turns out! 

Mixed Media Process Art for Toddlers

This simple activity uses Fall-colored tissue paper pieces and yarn to create unique art pieces. To prepare for this activity, you will need to cut tissue paper (in red, orange, and yellow) into small cubes and cut some yarn into several small pieces.

Set up the activity by giving each child a piece of blank construction paper along with their own paintbrush and small cup of glue. Place a few baskets in the center of the table with the tissue paper and yarn pieces. If you have them available, you might set out additional  items for children to use in their college. These could include natural materials like sticks and leaves, or other decorative art items like stickers, buttons, and pom-poms. Invite children to use their paint brushes to paint the glue onto the paper and stick their items onto the sections of the paper on which they’ve applied the glue.

Once dry, hang the final process art creations in your classroom for a colorful display! 

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