Recycled Apple Craft

apple craft for kidsI warned you I am crazy about apples right now, I can’t help it as more kids head back-to-school apples jump to my mind !  This week won’t all be apple themed here but over at my FamilyEducation.com blog it is. So if you are looking for more ideas check it out!  This craft is awesome because it requires almost no supplies, and it’s safe to assume most of us have paper rolls around the house. Oh and it’s so cute! These could also be used for cute apple napkin rings, a useful craft.

  1. Gather your materials. You will need a toilet paper roll, red and green paint, a sponge paint brush ( any brush or even fingers will work but sponges work best!), scissors and glue.
  2. Start by cutting your roll into rings, you can make think or thin.
  3. Cut 1 or 2 into strips ( these will be made into the leaves).
  4. Paint the rings red, inside and out. Let dry.
  5. Paint the strips green. Let dry.
  6. When the paint is dry cut the strips into leaf shapes.
  7. Bend the bottom.
  8. Add glue
  9. Stick it on the red ring!

Books!

The Apple Pie Tree by Zoe Hall is a cute look at a year in the life of an apple tree from the perspective of a little girl. From the bare branches of Winter to the pretty flowers in Spring we follow along not only with the tree but with a family of robins as they develop along with the fruit. The illustrations by Shari Halpern are so expressive that a child could easily read the pictures and enjoy this book independently even if they aren’t reading yet. I dare you to read this and not consider making apple pie after, if you need a recipe there is one at the end of the book!

Apples, Apples, Apples by Nancy Elizabeth Wallace will not be returned to the library on time. We got it out today and my son has had me read it to him 3 times, and his dad read it twice. Clearly it gets the 3 year old seal of approval. It also gets mine. The story is more than just a story about a family going apple picking at an orchard. It explains all sorts of apple facts but what I really love is that it also explains that there are different kinds of apples and each are used for different things. Since each member of the family is using their apples for different purposes that fact is driven home . Great book for preschoolers going on a apple picking field trip , making applesauce or apple prints ( psst check back for a craft in a few days!).

One Red Apple by Harriet Ziefert is stunning. I really enjoy this author but most of my praise for this book lands squarely on the illustrator Karla Gudeon’s shoulders. WOW. I just adore the look, and creativity of this book. The story follows the cycle of one apple from orchard, to market back to seed, tree and back into the hands of a child. I enjoy books like this that simply explain the cycles of the natural world to young kids , but you can’t miss this one.  As I turned each page I gasped, it’s one of those books you just need to sit and look at because each time you do you find some little detail you missed before.

Back To School Kids Craft

This apple craft can be done two ways, lacing it for older more dexterous children and simply using a stapler for younger kids and toddlers. Either way there is something I just love about apples made from brown craft paper or my low cost alternative – grocery bags!

  1. Gather your materials. You will need a brown grocery bag or craft paper, newspaper, hole punch ( or stapler if you aren’t doing the lacing), ribbon, red, brown and green paint, scissors and paint brush.
  2. Start by drawing an apple on the paper.
  3. Cut out 2 apples ( back and front).
  4. Paint.
  5. While the paint dries crumple up your newspaper.
  6. When dry punch holes in the apple ( make sure you punch them in the same spot on both front and back).
  7. Tie your ribbon on. You can also use a button to act as a stopper.
  8. Start lacing.
  9. Stuff with your newspaper.
  10. Finish lacing.

Back to School Books !

Look Out Kindergarten, Here I Come by Nancy Carlson did not live up to my expectations. It was written in 1999 but the information seems out dated, the little mouse in the story is entering kindergarten but is still unsure of his ABCs and could only count to 10. I know this seems like a minute detail but it bugs me because most kids entering kindergarten are well aware of the alphabet and can count past 10 with ease. I felt like it covered the basics about what a child can expect but it doesn’t go into any depth and I doubt it would ease any anxiety or fulfill any honest curiosity. I hate giving bad reviews but I just don’t like this book.

Miss Mingo and the First Day of School by Jamie Harper is a delightful book. Miss Mingo is a flamingo and teacher who wants to know about her students on the first day of school. She starts the exercise by sharing some fun facts about being a flamingo , like why she is pink, and before you know it the whole class of different animals are sharing. This book not only shows kids that it’s okay to share about themselves but it is full of fun facts about animals in the fine print. I learned something I never knew about a Narwhal! It is a bit long for a toddler but each page highlights new animals and it’s easy to skip a few for those that aren’t ready for a book of this length. This is going on my buy list!

The Kissing Hand by Audry Penn is an absolute favorite . Chester is a raccoon who like most of us doesn’t like change. In his case it’s starting school. He wants to stay home with his mama and play with the friends he already has instead of going to school away from her and his friends. So his mama explains to him the magic of the kissing hand . The real magic is the message that we have to do things that scare us sometimes but that the love of our family is always with us to help us through. Go get this book.

Fall Sensory Bin with Apples & Acorns!

fall sensory bin for preschool This fall sensory bin is a great way to welcome the best parts of the coming season, by scooping, pouring and pinching up beans, apples and acorns.  I usually keep a sensory bin theme for a month or two pulling it out every few days and letting my son explore.  Now that he is a little older my son prefers to use the tongs to pick things up . Using a small dish to hold the material he pinches up is a great way to encourage counting and sorting with a sensory tub.Don’t miss our books about apples

  1. Gather your materials. You will need some beans ( we are using pinto and navy), acorns ( real or artificial), some fake apples, scoops and tongs. I use the same container for my sensory tubs usually , and keep the materials in ziplocs while not in use.  I got the acorns and the apples in the potpourri section of a home decorating store. 
  2. Start by pouring the beans into the container.
  3. Add the apples .
  4. Add the acorns.
  5. Add your tools and invite your child to play!apples and acrons sensory play edit
  6. Pinch and count! apples and acorns play edit4

Books About Apples

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Apples by Jacqueline Farmer is not a book to snuggle up and read before bed or really anytime with a toddler but wow it’s a wonderful resource. I didn’t know how much I didn’t know about apples until I read this book. It’s packed full of detail about how they are grown, where they came from originally, varieties and more! I urge teachers and homeschooling parents to check this out if you are doing any study about fruit, or apples.

iknowitsautum

I Know It’s Autumn by Eileen Spinelli  is  age appropriate for young preschoolers and  toddlers. The book is a simple look at all the things that tell a small child that Autumn is here. Pumpkin muffins, apple picking, cooler weather,  hayrides and more all signal that the summer is gone and the fall has arrived. I like this book because there will be something a child will relate to and be able to identify with. I also love that the family is biracial and there is no mention of it at all. It’s nice to see and I wish more books were so non challant about representing all kinds of families.

 


Apple Farmer Annie
by  Monica Wellington is another  favorite in our house. My son loves this author and I like how simple but informative this book is. Your little reader will learn about the basics of what happens at an apple orchard , but you can take it further if you want. On many of the pages there are chances to learn more, like the page about sorting and classifying, where there are apples ready to count 1-10, and sorted by colors. I love the last page that says that Annie is so happy to have her own apple farm. I loved that message and think it’s a lot more powerful than some may think, women on farms in most books are “farmer’s wives” and I love that there is no one but Annie doing her own thing.

Apple Picking Craft

Basket of Apples

Apple Kids Craft

Sometimes I think of kids craft and in my mind it’s simple, when in reality it’s not. This is one of those crafts but I still wanted to share, we had fun doing it but it was definitely a mom and little man joint effort, I helped with almost every step.  All the steps were worth it though, he was so proud to show off his” tricky art ” to his dad when he got home from work.  If you are looking for a more toddler friendly apple craft try this or this or this .

  1. Gather your materials . You will need 1 sheet of  plain construction paper( or paper grocery bags would be awesome too),1 sheet of orange construction paper ,  some green paper, red, brown  and green  markers (crayons or paint would work as well), popsicle sticks, glue and scissors.Art Materials
  2. Start by drawing some apples ( yes those are apples) on the plain construction paper.Apple Craft
  3. Have your child color the apples. 2October 065
  4. While they color draw a basic basket on the orange paper, leaving room under for the grass.  This is just a guide for your child. Cut a strip of green for the grass, set aside.2October 067
  5. When they are done cut the apples out.2October 069
  6. Have them make cuts along the green strip to make grass, do not cut all the way through. I folded it in half to make it easier for him to hold it .2October 068
  7. Time to glue.
  8. Add a line of glue on the bottom for the grass.2October 070
  9. Add the grass.2October 071
  10. Add glue to the basket.2October 072
  11. Add the apples.2October 073
  12. Add stems and leaves with a green marker2October 074
  13. Add glue for the sticks.2October 075
  14. Add the sticks, let dry.2October 076

Books!

apple picking time

” Apple Picking Time” by Michele Benoit Slawson  was not what I was expecting , it was so much more. I was expecting a basic book about picking apples at an orchard.  This book is anything but basic, it’s dreamy and while reading it I almost felt as thought I was back in time when a whole community would come to a stand still for something like apple picking.  The protagonist is Anna a little girl who works hard in the orchard along side her parents and grandparents . She isn’t as fast as her parents, but with hard work and the support of her family she reaches her goal and fills a bin! I loved this book, I didn’t even try to read it to my son, he simply wouldn’t sit long enough. The text is long and I would suggest it for preschoolers and up.

iknowitsautum

“I Know It’s Autumn” by Eileen Spinelli  is much more age appropriate for my son and other toddlers. The book is a simple look at all the things that tell a small child that Autumn is here. Pumpkin muffins, apple picking, cooler weather,  hayrides and more all signal that the summer is gone and the fall has arrived. I like this book because there will be something a child will relate to and be able to identify with. I also love that the family is biracial and there is no mention of it at all. It’s nice to see and I wish more books were so non challant about representing all kinds of families.


“Apple Farmer Annie” by Monica Wellington is another instant favorite in our house. My son loves this author and I like how simple but informative this book is. Your little reader will learn about the basics of what happens at an apple orchard , but you can take it further if you want. On many of the pages there are chances to learn more, like the page about sorting and classifying, where there are apples ready to count 1-10, and sorted by colors. I love the last page that says that Annie is so happy to have her own apple farm. I loved that message and think it’s a lot more powerful than some may think, women on farms in most books are “farmer’s wives” and I love that there is no one but Annie doing her own thing.

Go Apple Picking !

Check out  pickyourown.org
to find local pick your own farms near you!

Lowercase Letter of The Week : a

apple a !
Welcome to the new letter of the week- it’s all lower case from now on! Don’t worry though I will link the uppercase letter at the bottom of each post . I know we just did an apple but I have to practice what I preach and let my child’s interests lead – and the little dude wanted to make an apple a, which I was happy to since it’s a cinch to turn a lowercase a into an apple. I am not starting with a to go in alphabetical order, and in many teaching circles you keep the vowels for last. I am doing them as he shows interests but encourage you to do them however works best for your child.

  1. Gather your materials. You will need a paper plate, some scrap green paper, a red and brown marker, glue and scissors. If you want to make it easier to display you can also use another piece of paper for a backing. Also I am only using the paper plate because my husband bought a pack large enough to use for 10 years , plain paper would work just fine.
  2. Start by writing a large lowercase a on the plate.
  3. Have your child color the straight side brown to make a stem. As we were coloring we talked about how the a is shaped and also the parts of an apple.
  4. Color the rest red ! A cool perk of the paper plate was that it kept the marker contained even with very very enthusiastic coloring.
  5. While they color, cut out a leaf from the green paper. If your child is able to do this step have them do it after coloring.
  6. Cut the a out.
  7. Glue onto the paper.
  8. Add the leaf. Let dry.

Books

“One Green Apple” by Even Bunting is a treat. The book is not about apples really at all, instead it’s about Farrah a little Muslim girl who has come to the United States from an unnamed country and her first day at school. The day is spent on a field trip to an orchard , where the children pick apples and make apple cider. I immediately related to this as my first day of work at a school in my new country was trying, although I could speak the language unlike Farrah it was still daunting to be new in unfamiliar territory. The melting pot analogy is turned into a apple cider one as all the children throw their apples in and work together to press it into cider, even Farrah helps. They all drink the collectively made cider. My son was too young for this book but I think it would be realistic for a PreK – 2nd grade.


“The Apple Pie the Papa Baked” by Lauren Thompson had me tricked into thinking that it was a new edition of an old book. The retro look to the illustrations hooked me and I was shocked to see it was only published 2 years ago. The reader is taken through all the elements that go into making a pie, not the recipe though. The story works backwards from pie to the apples, the tree, the roots and more . The message is one of interconnectedness and makes me feel equally important and small all at the same time. I think it’s useful to teach how everything in nature is dependent on other elements and can’t work alone. My son enjoyed the illustrations of the sun with a face and the little girl helping her father at every step.


“Apple Farmer Annie” by Monica Wellington is another instant favorite in our house. My son loves this author and I like how simple but informative this book is. Your little reader will learn about the basics of what happens at an apple orchard , but you can take it further if you want. On many of the pages there are chances to learn more, like the page about sorting and classifying, where there are apples ready to count 1-10, and sorted by colors. I love the last page that says that Annie is so happy to have her own apple farm. I loved that message and think it’s a lot more powerful than some may think, women on farms in most books are “farmer’s wives” and I love that there is no one but Annie doing her own thing.