It’s apple picking time so bring out all the apple activities for a fun-filled apple theme in your preschool, pre-k, or kindergarten classroom! I’m here to share all of our favorite apple-themed activities with you. Grab your lesson plan book, and let’s go!
> Want all the Apple Math and Literacy Center printables? Grab them HERE <<
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Get your students counting and sorting with the Apple Pie Counting Stew FREEBIE! It is a hands-on counting game where students pick a recipe card and count out each item listed to create the apple pie stew! Then students sort the items back onto the tray and play again by picking another recipe card.
> > Go to the bottom of this post and fill out the box to grab the FREE Apple Pie Counting Stew <<
If you love the Apple Pie Counting Stew, I have more counting stews for many other different themes. You can check them out HERE or read more about them HERE.
Apple pastries are delicious and perfect for a counting game! Place magnet numbers in a muffin tin (this one is from the dollar store) with a pair of tweezers. Students roll a die, count how many, and place the corresponding number of apples in the number tin.
Let’s talk about the Apple Counters because you will need them to create all of these apple activities! You can use mini eraser apples, pom poms, apple counters, gems, or stackable counters.
Apple Play Dough Mats are a fun counting activity, and it’s an easy way to sneak in fine motor too. Pick an apple ten frame, count out the matching number of apples for the basket, and lastly, make that number of apples in the tree.
The next counting game shows students how numbers can be represented in various ways, such as counting hands, ten frames, numerals, and objects. We play so many counting games in the fall to help students develop counting concepts and skills. This game has numbers up to 20, but for my younger kiddos, I only put out numbers 1-5 or numbers 1-10. It’s an easy game to differentiate.
Apple Tree Shapes is a game my kiddos absolutely love; they played it over and over! It’s a simple game, just pick a card, say the name of the shape, and cover it on the tree.
This is a color sorting game that gets students up and moving! Draw three trees on butcher paper with a bingo dabber (ours had Inda ink in it) and write the color words on each tree. Then students sort the apple manipulatives by color. We also put dot stickers in the basket for students to sort too! Make a giant apple alphabet with red paper plates! Just write a letter on each plate and tape a small brown pipe cleaner to the back for a stem. First, students put the giant letter apples in order and then sort various letter manipulatives by matching the letters.
This printable apple game has students sorting letters and SOUNDS! If your students are younger or students who are just starting to notice sounds, only put out 5-10 letters so it’s not overwhelming. Put out letters that are important to them, such as the letters in their name, their friends’ names, or their family.
An apple-themed writing table is a must when teaching an apple theme in your classroom. By changing things up at the writing table with each theme, students stay excited about writing! I packed it with apple word cards, apple-themed paper, apple color dot markers, apple stickers, and dot stickers.
If you look closely at the writing table, you will see these fun apple letter tracing cards! Pretend the black beans are apple seeds, and students can build the letter with the apple seeds and then trace it with a dry-erase marker. Plus, building letters with those little beans is also strengthening those fingers and wrists too!
For our apple writing trays, I’m using these red plates from IKEA since they look like apples. You can use any plate, tray, or pencil box for writing trays as long as it has a tall edge so the oatmeal stays in easily.
Your students will be excited to write letters in the oatmeal using cinnamon sticks! Writing trays give students a multi-sensory way to write letters (smell the cinnamon, feel the oatmeal as they write the letter, see the letter on the apple, hear the cinnamon stick scrape the tray).
Let’s serve up some syllables with this apple pie game! Students clap the number of syllables in the word and place it on the matching pie. Attach the pie pieces with Velcro dots and place the game on cookie sheets or pie pans to make it come to life!
Fill your classroom bookshelf with apple books to engage those little readers. Check out this post for a giant list of my favorite apple books.
Oatmeal with a few dashes of cinnamon is what we put in the sensory table for our apple theme! Students were always busy making delicious pies. Also, so much math is happening at this sensory table! Students counted the apples, measured the oatmeal, and explored size and capacity with the various tools and pie pans.
It’s super easy to create this apple play dough tray! Make some cinnamon play dough or buy store-bought play dough and sprinkle in some cinnamon. Find a few small pie pans (these are from Home Goods), apple cookie cutters (Hobby Lobby), apple mini erasers or counters, apple seeds (aka black beans), cinnamon sticks, and mini baking tools (Walmart). Play dough trays help students develop those tiny fine motor muscles, large shoulder and upper arm muscles, and social skills as they play with their peers.
Make apple trees for a STEM challenge! We did this activity for an arrival table time activity. I placed green popsicle sticks of various sizes, green pattern block triangles, apple mini erasers, and markers (red, green, and brown) on the tray in the middle of each table, along with a Sketch blueprint and cardboard tube at each seat. Each student made his or her own apple tree and then sketched a picture of it. The sketch is a perfect addition to students’ portfolios.
There are endless apple science activities you can do! I am sharing just a few of our favorites! Taste the apples, examine the apples, cut open the apples, and compare the apples! During circle or small group, build your chart to record the data. You can grab all of these apple science printables in my All About Apples Science Unit HERE.
Bring in apple foods for students at snack time, or just have an apple food tasting!
If you are doing an apple theme, an apple paper plate craft is a must. I’m typically more of an open-ended art project teacher, but I used this craft to teach the kiddos how to tear the paper. I tore long strips of red paper for them, so all they had to do was tear across. Tearing paper can be very tricky for little learners, but it can lead to so many fun open-ended art projects and collages later in the year!
When you bring items into the classroom for still-life art, there are so many ways you can approach it. This time they drew the apples and stems with a black permanent marker and then painted their drawing with liquid watercolor paints. We did this for a small group because I wanted to monitor the use of the permanent maker…just to be safe.
Apple printing with real apples always seemed to frustrate my kiddos. The apples can be slippery to stamp, so I decided to offer an alternative. These cylinder blocks were perfect for stamping circles! After they stamped their apples using the blocks, they could add stems with a brown marker if they wanted.
If you are new to my blog, let me first say how much I love transforming the dramatic play center and sometimes go a bit overboard. But they love it, and I love creating a place packed full of literacy, math, and science play experiences for my students. I wrote an entire blog post all about our Apple Orchard (and how you can make lots of the props yourself) so go check it out HERE.
Apples Blocks & STEM Props! Add these block props and STEM cards to encourage students to build and create with a fun apple theme.
Now I’m sure your lesson plans are packed full of fun and educational apple activities! We had a blast learning during our apple theme, and I just had to share all of our ideas with you!
>> Want all the Apple Math and Literacy Center printables? Grab them HERE <<
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