1-2-3 Come Do Some Apple "Craftivities" With Me
Studying apples was one of my very favorite units. Apples can be used across the board for every subject. I especially enjoy designing hands-on apple lessons that help students practice their fine motor + listening and following direction skills. Because my room was on the far end of the school, one of the corridors provided a hallway to myself! I LOVED decorating it to the hilt, with my students' "mess-terpieces"; we always received tons of compliments too.
To introduce, and encourage rhyming, I like to make up poems and songs to familiar tunes. I used the tune of 3 Blind Mice for the Apples Apples Apples dangler. It reinforces the concept of small-medium and large, as well as the fact that apples can be red, yellow or green. Older students can also label the parts of an apple.
To make this even more special, have students glue their photo to the leaf, and press their pinkie finger on a brown stamp pad, to make the 5 seeds in the center of their apple. Making a brown construction paper loop for a stem, adds pizzazz, and makes it easy to hang these from the ceiling. Click on the link to veiw/download the Apples Song Dangler.
Small squares of red, yellow and green tissue paper, collaged on a card stock apple, also provides great fine motor skill practice. The results are truly amazing. For a high gloss finish, gently paint the top of the apple, with watered-down Elmer's white glue, or Modge Podge. For that extra bit of pizzazz, add a scrap of calico fabric and a button. Click on the link to view/download the Tissue Paper Apple Activity.
If you've cut apples using an Ellison die-cut machine, save the outside "frame." For an "instant" apple, put the "frame" on top of the tissue paper collage. If you want these to have a "stained glass" look, collage the tissue squares on a sheet of wax paper, trim and hang in the window.
Another quick & easy craftivity your students can do, to reinforce the concept of 3D, as well as the fact that apples come in 3 colors, is to have them make an apple pencil topper.
I call these apple twirlers, because you can rub the pencil between the palms of your hands and make the apple twirl.
To make one, run off the apple template on red, green and yellow construction paper. Students trim their apples, fold them in half and then glue each half together til they have a 3 dimensional apple, whose "faces" are red, green and yellow. This is a teachable "fraction" moment, to cover the terms "whole" and "half." While the glue is still wet, students slide their apple onto the top of their pencil. Click on the link to view/download the Pencil Apple Twirler.
A spin off of this activity, is a tri-colored apple paper chain. Instead of putting their apple on top of a pencil, students add a seed center to each face, punch a hole at the base, make a yarn loop and attach yellow, red and green paper chain links. Review an ABC-ABC pattern with your students, as well as odd and even numbers.
They can make their chains as long as they have time for. Older students can write an apple fact on each one of the strip before they link them up. Click on the bolded link above to view/download this craftivity.
Finally, to add a bit of pizzazz to your apple cut-outs, and help students strengthen their finger muscles, use a hand held crinkler, to give papers the look of corregated cardboard.
You can buy these rollers at any hobby store. They retail for around $18, but watch for weekly 40%-50% off coupons and get one then.
Students simply insert their paper into the roller and crank away. My Y5's LOVED doing this, and nick named the machine "Mr. Cruncher Muncher." Click on the link for the pattern.
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"When you change the way you see things, the things you see change." -Unknown