Set out corks and shallow containers filled with red tempera paint. Give each child an apple tree shape cut out of construction paper. Let the children use the round ends of the corks to print "apples" on their tree shapes. After the paint has dried, use the prints for counting.
Cut some apples in half vertically and others in half horizontally. Show the children the hidden star inside the apples cut horizontally. Pour small amounts of red tempera paint onto several sponges set in shallow containers. Let the children dab the apple halves on the sponges and then gently press the apples on pieces of construction paper to make prints.
Give each child a small paper plate and a piece of red paper. Let the children tear their papers into small pieces. Then have them glue the pieces all over their paper plates. Add green paper stems and use the "apples" as room decorations.
Cut large apple shapes out of white butcher paper. Give each child an apple shape and a small amount of red fingerpaint. Let the children paint the apple shapes. Attach precut green leaves to the top of each apple when the shapes have dried.
Observe and discuss with the children what raw apples look like. Ask them to predict what will happen when the apples are cooked. Bake a whole apple. Slice and simmer another one. Have the children compare the results with the raw apples. Ask them to describe the changes that occurred in color, texture, and taste.
Set up an apple activity center. Provide a variety of items for the children to explore such as red, green, and yellow apples; apple seeds to examine with a magnifying glass; and foods made with apples (applesauce, dried apples, apple juice).
Have the children use a magnifying glass to look at seeds inside and outside of an apple. Ask them to compare the apple seeds with other fruit seeds that you have set out.
How Many Seeds?
Hold up an apple and ask the children to predict the number of seeds that will be found inside. Cut the apple open and count the seeds with the children. Have them compare the number of seeds with their predictions. Try the experiment with another apple. Does it have the same number of seeds as the first one? Try the same experiment using a different colored apple.
Cut a red construction paper cover and newsprint pages into an apple shape. As a group, make a book about apples by having the children each dictate a story for you to record on one of the apple-shaped pages. Let each child illustrate his or her story. Then staple the cover and pages together to make an Apple Book.
Variation: Make a separate book for each child's story.
The Letter "A"
Introduce the letter "A" to the children by showing them the written word "Apple" and helping them to see that it begins with an "A". Identify children in your group who have names beginning with "A". Cut a large apple shape out of paper and write the letter "A" on it. Have the children cut out magazine pictures of things that have names beginning with "A" and then glue the pictures on the apple shape.
Apple Man Puppet
Stick whole cloves into one side of an apple to make two eyes, a nose, and a mouth. Stick toothpicks into the apple on either side of the face to make arms. If desired, complete your Apple Man puppet by attaching carrot curls for hair. Let the children take turns making up stories about Apple Man's adventures. Record their stories on tape to listen to again later or write each child's response on paper and let him or her illustrate the story.
Extension: Use your puppet when singing the Apple Man Song.
Apple Counting Game
Glue a felt tree shape to each of five cardboard squares. Write a number from 1 to 5 under each tree. Cut fifteen apple shapes out of felt. To play the game, have the children take turns identifying the numbers below the trees and placing the corresponding number of apples on them.
Have the children sort different colors of apples (or apple shapes cut from construction paper) into baskets. Let them count how many red, green, and yellow apples there are. Then ask them to line up the apples in each group from smallest to largest.
Make a felt apple tree and ten felt apples and place the tree on a flannelboard. Number the apples from 1 to 10. Let each child in turn choose an apple, identify the number on it and place the apple on the tree. When all the apples are on the tree, count them as a group.
Do You Know the Apple Man?
Sung to : "The Muffin Man"
Oh, do you know the Apple Man,
The Apple Man,
The Apple Man?
Oh, do you know the Apple Man
Who likes to play with me?
Oh, he has a great big smile,
A great big smile,
A great big smile.
Oh, he has a great big smile
And likes to play with me.
Continue with other verses that the children make up about Apple Man.
Sung to : "Yankee Doodle"
Peel an apple,
Cut it up,
Cook it in a pot,
When you taste it
You will find
It's applesauce you've got!
Look at the Apple
Sung to : "The Mulberry Bush"
Look at the apple I have found,
So fat and rosy on the ground.
Mother will wash it and
Cut it in two --
Half for me and half for you.
In a bowl mix together 1/4 cup mayonnaise, 1/4 cup milk, and 1 teaspoon lemon juice. Grate 1 large apple and 1 small cabbage and add them to the mayonnaise mixture. Makes 8 servings.
Apple Finger Cubes
Pour 2 envelopes unflavored gelatin into a bowl. Add 2 cups boiling water. Stir until gelatin is dissolved. Add one 6-ounce can unsweeetened frozen apple juice concentrate. Pour mixture into a lightly greased 9- by 13-inch cake pan and chill. Cut into squares when firm.
Quarter, core and peel 3 to 4 sweet apples. Cut the quarter pieces in half and put them in a saucepan. Add 1/2 cup water, sprinkle on 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon and simmer, covered, until the apples are tender (about 20 minutes). Have the children mash the cooked apples with a potato masher or whirl them in a blender. Cool and eat. Makes 6 servings.