Fall is one of my favorite times of the year! I love bringing fall into the classroom with fall themed activities. I wanted to share with you my favorite fall activities for upper elementary students. Some of these resources are paid resources found in my TpT store and some are freebies.
I always love incorporating seasonal math activities into my guided math classroom. You can read more about my guided math centers by clicking here.
These math centers shown are from my Fall into Math center pack for fifth grade. I found these cute leaf and acorn containers at the Dollar Tree to hold the different center pieces. I love using seasonal containers to add a little more fun to the fall themed activity. These centers cover skills such as multiplying and dividing whole numbers, writing numbers, order of operations, expressions, and more! Check the centers out using this link.
This next fall math activity is a freebie printable that is perfect for homework, morning work, or to even stick in a review math center. This activity has the students practicing place value from the thousandths to the ten millions. The students identify the place value of the underlined digit to answer a fall themed riddle. Click here to grab this FREEBIE from my TeacherspayTeachers store.
I also love mixing up my homework and my morning work printables with seasonal themed practice sheets. These just print practice pages from my Fall and Thanksgiving Just Print Math are perfect for review. The students always love the themes and graphics. Click here to see the 4th and 5th grade sets in my store.
I also sneak some differentiation and rigor into my fall themed activities with these themed math tasks. These tasks are differentiated at two levels and perfect for 4th and 5th grade students. Check them out in my store by clicking here!
This is a fun and informative fall themed science experiment that has a great content focus. This experiment explores how leaves change color in the fall. The purpose of the experiment is to get the students to understand that chlorophyll (which gives leaves the green color) masks the other colors in the leaves. In the winter, trees block water to the leaves breaking down the chlorophyll and allowing the other colors to be visible. I originally followed the directions found here. However I had better results following the modifications that The Brown Bag Teacher made.
To begin, you tear three or four large green leaves into tiny pieces.
Then you cover the leaves with rubbing alcohol. After adding the alcohol, mash the leaves and alcohol for a few minutes. Mash until the alcohol is a light green color. The rubbing alcohol and the energy from the mashing is what separates the colors from the leaves.
Next I placed two strips of a coffee filter into the cups and taped them to the outside of the cup. The strips of paper will absorb the pigments from the leaves, modeling the process of leaves changing colors in the fall.
After about 3-4 hours, the colored pigment started to rise up through the filter. These were the results. Catherine had better results and her pigments were actually green, so make sure you check out her experiment at the link above.
I love this nonfiction book because it ties right into our leaf experiment. The page shown is one that I specifically read after the experiment to understand a little more about the science of leaves changing color.
This next book…I love! I just found this book this year, and I am in love with it already. It does feature a jack -o-lantern, which is typically Halloween. However, the book focuses on what happens to the pumpkin when it starts to rot. Reading this book in November is perfect.
I love this book for several reasons. First, the pictures are so interesting. Second, it’s an interesting take on point of view as each organism explains their role in the pumpkin rotting. Finally, the book is great for teaching RI.5.3, the standard dealing with connections and relationships in scientific text. All the organisms in the book interact with the pumpkin. Also, some of the organisms do things that “help” another organism. These two example pages from the book show all three of my favorite features. I mean, look at those pictures! The students will love them.
I am loving these seasonal paired passages in my store. This set from my Fall and Thanksgiving resource is perfect because it explores trees preparing for winter and how leaves change color. This ties in perfectly with the experiment and the read aloud. You can check out this seasonal paired passage set by clicking on this link.
The students love these paired passage sets because of all the interactive elements that come with them. I love them because they are super rigorous and help prepare my students for constructed response reading assessments.
Finally, I always love giving my students themed bookmarks. These can be printed on colored card stock or white paper for the students to color. Click here to download the bookmarks for free.
Those are my favorite fall activities for upper elementary students. Click here to read about my favorite Halloween ideas and activities.
Do you have any favorite fall activities?