​12 Fall Activities With a Jewish Twist

Autumn means changing leaves, cooler temperatures, and many holidays to celebrate. We've highlighted 11 special crafts (plus one bonus) that all have a connection to the changing season and the holidays coming up in the Jewish calendar.

Honey Playdough

Photo via TeachingMama

This fast and easy no-cook playdough recipe has a special fall and Rosh Hashanah twist: honey! Playdough is great for building muscle tone and motor skills in children while fostering creativity. The best part about this non-toxic recipe? It smells wonderful! Get the full recipe from Teaching Mama

Apple Paintings

A little boy jumps over his mom's shoulder to make an apple print.

In some parts of the United States, apples are synonymous with fall. If you’ve been apple picking, or are lucky enough to have an apple tree in your backyard, this fun printmaking activity is a great way to make use of any surplus on hand. Try pairing your painting activity with a book about Rosh Hashanah like Apple Days by Allison Soffer or Apples and Honey by Joan Solub.

Edible Torah

Photo via Bible Belt Balabusta

These adorable edible Torah scrolls are fun to make any time of the year and can be customized for fall with pumpkin butter or apple jam. The recipe from Bible Belt Balabusta also includes options for healthy variations.

Make Your Own Shofar

Photo via AlphaMom

Ring in the new year with your very own DIY shofar! Try out this version with older kids. If you’re not quite sure that you’re ready for papier mache, the Joyful Jewish blog has a simpler, but equally loud, version available. Have your shofar ready when you read Rosh Hashanah is Coming or Happy Birthday, World.

Upcycled Bird Feeders

Do some bird watching and practice two mitzvot (that’s the plural of mitzvah) at once by making a bird feeder out of some recycled materials. You will be preventing unnecessary waste (bal taschit) while also giving feathered friends a nice stop over and fuel up spot before their winter migrations (tz'ar ba'alei chayim– kindness to animals).

Thumb Print Bees

Photo via ChallahCrumbs

Did you ever make thumbprint bugs when you were a kid? These are a twist featuring honey bees. This little craft is great for Rosh Hashanah. The best part? They’re quick and easy to make. Turn the bees into cards for family or just art for the fridge.

Napkin Rings

Photo via ToriAvey.com

These cute napkin rings are bee and apple themed for Rosh Hashanah. The steps included take you from painting the beads to stringing them. This craft is great for older children as it requires a bit of focus. If you’re looking to take a shortcut, buy premade beads that are already painted.

Round Challah

Photo via Cupcake Project

Cupcake Project walks through the steps to create a perfectly braided round challah (it’s easier than you think)! If you try out this recipe, let us know.

Decorations for your Sukkah:

Sukkot is a fall holiday of thanksgiving. As part of the celebration, families build a sukkah. Eating and living in a temporary structure--called a sukkah--forces you to think about the important things in life, separating you from material possessions. The huts are supposed to remind us of the flimsy houses our ancestors lived in as they traveled through the desert heading towards Israel. Because Sukkot is also a harvest festival, it is considered an especially happy and festive time. The following crafts are fun items you can make to decorate your family’s sukkah.

Paper Lanterns

Photo via Creative Jewish Mom

These quick and easy crafts are a fun addition to your sukkah. If you’re working with little hands, opt for construction paper, safety scissors, and glue sticks.

Yarn Eggs

Photo via Craft Whack

Yarn Eggs are a cool and easy way to decorate your space and they’re pretty simple to make to boot. You’ll need some balloons (preferably unused water balloons left over from the summer), some glue, and string. You can also make these as an activity to compliment the story, Red, Blue, and Yellow Yarn: A Tale of Forgiveness.

Fabric Garland

A great way to repurpose fabric odds and ends from old projects as well as old tees, cloth, and ribbon. Just cut fabric into about even length strips, then tie each strip to a length of twine, ribbon, or rope. This fun activity helps children learn about repurposing items and not letting anything go to waste. My Grandfather's Coat is a wonderful story compliment to this activity.

Bonus Craft:

Leaf Window Clings

Video via KidsCraftRoom.com

These window clings provide a lovely way to welcome autumn. This craft provides a wonderful opportunity to talk about the changing season, appreciate the colors of the leaves, and feel gratitude for the coming holidays.