A season-table is a table on which the seasons are shown. The aim of a season-table is to show what changes take place outside in nature.
The autumn-table for the class-room is a well-known example of the season-table. However, not only at schools but also in the living-room, in children day-care centres, in nursing-homes and in other institutions for the weak and disabled, season-tables appear. The traditional autumn-table is still quite popular, but there are also more and more other tables showing the other seasons as well.
Find a good place in your living-room or in another place, for instance next to the reception-counter or on a shelf or table in the waiting-room which may suit the purpose. In the living-room a place in the window, in the book-case or elsewhere on a shelf will be suitable. Ideal would be a table or a low shelf in for instance a press or cabinet of approx. 80 x 40 centimetres, with a height of 70 centimetres, so that also very young children can easily see the season-table.
The arrangement of a season-table
This can be very simple. Take one or two pieces of supple material ( for instance a flannel or silk cloth ) of 65 x 100 centimetres in the colours of the season. You can use these to your own preference, tightly or loosely positioned over the table. Make differences in height by placing the material over one or more logs of wood or use a few well-chosen stones or pieces of a big branch.
Do not make the presentation too full. Not everything need be presented. Think beforehand who are going to see the presentation. A table for young children needs another presentation than one for adults.
The colours of the season-table
The colours of the fabrics are important and are decisive for the atmosphere of the table. They express the colours of the season that is presented.
- light shades such as light green and yellow in spring
- red, green and bright blue (for a beach-scene) in summer
- warm colours such as orange, warm yellow, red and moss-green in the autumn
- in winter you can use red for St. Nicolas or Christmas, blue for the Advent-time
- and cold colours for the winter scene in January and February : white, light blue or violet.
Objects and figures
Collect twigs, stones, shells, chestnuts and other objects from the woods or the beach with your children. A beautiful vase or flowers of the season always shows well. Season-table figures made of felt, multi-coloured wool and other natural materials are adapted to the season.
The books by Elsa Beskow can well be used in the classroom. The story of Olle’s skiing-trip is about King Winter, Uncle White-frost and Lady Thaw.
Mother Earth and the root-children
Also the story of Mother Earth and the root-children is quite suitable for telling the children about spring.
In the library and in bookshops books about the celebration of the anniversary-feasts are to be found.
Use the booklet the season-table written by M. van Leeuwen and Jos Moeskops published by Christofoor.