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4 Fun Musical Ideas for an Autumn Circle Time

Updated: Oct 19, 2023

I’m definitely a summer gal but I think I have to give it to fall when it comes to music session planning. I find that this season offers so many fun ideas and themes for kids: apples, pumpkins, whirling twirling leaves, forest animals, friendly monster fun, gratitude, yummy food…I may just have to make this a little fall series of posts!

So here is part 1 of some ideas for a fun-filled fall music session or circle time:

1. Pumpkin Emotions

Take the classic children’s song “If You’re Happy and You Know It” and explore different emotions using pumpkin feeling faces! Download the Pumpkin Emotion Flashcards (part of my Pumpkin Patch Activity Pack) as a freebie below!

After you go through the pumpkin emotions with the kids (I like to also httencourage kids to imitate the various emotion faces), use them as visuals in the song. For the varying emotions, add in different movements and coping strategies. Here are a few ideas:

If you’re happy and you know it, clap your hands

If you’re excited and you know it, jump up and down

If you’re sad and you know it, give yourself a hug

If you’re angry and you know it, take some deep breaths

2. Dancing Leaves Scarf Movement

I love creative movement that offers kids the opportunity to use their imaginations. In this activity, children will pretend they are whirling twirling leaves falling from the tree. Add to the fun by using colourful scarves for the leaves. Here is a simple leaf song you can sing as the children move:

Dancing Leaves

Tune of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star

Softly blows a quiet breeze

Gently through the autumn trees

Now a strong wind fills the air

Leaves are twirling everywhere

Whirling twirling all around

Slowly drifting to the ground

If you’d like a great fall scarf song to listen to as you move, I love this one by Stephanie Leavell:

3. 5 Little Acorns Rhyme

Five little acorns sitting in a tree

Along came Mr. Squirrel

As hungry as can be

Then the fall winds blew

And rustled all the leaves

Down came an acorn

Mr. Squirrel was very pleased

(repeat 4, 3, 2, 1… until there are none)

Act out this rhyme together or use a visual scene as you sing — counting how many acorns are left each time the squirrel eats one. The visual is a great resource for practicing turn taking and waiting until the specific point in the song to remove an acorn from the tree. You find this one, along with two other fun fall counting rhymes, through the button below!

4. Book Rec : “It’s Fall“ by Renee Kurilla

I just love the vibrant illustrations in this book. It also has the sweetest rhyming text (easy to add a melody to) all about the treasures we find in the autumn season. A great book to introduce as music time is coming to an end. It helps kids explore the wonders of the season and also sparks discussion, prompting kids to share what they love most about the fall. Here’s a snippet of how I like to sing it (to the tune of “Up On the Housetop”).

Sending cozy, warm, and joyful October vibes to you!



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