Lesson Plans and Apple Activities
Johnny Appleseed is famous for planting apple seeds across land while exploring and having an adventurous life. For older students, it is fascinating to have them research his life and find out WHY he really planted the seeds. They can discover that the apples were used to make HARD CIDER because they were too small and bitter.
Younger students learn about his love of animals, his real name (John Chapman) funny personality and kindness. For twenty years, I have taught primary students about Johnny Appleseed. At the end of each school year I would survey my class and most classes remember the week we learned about apples!
Introduce Johnny Appleseed by reading a book about his life. Discuss the facts from the book. Share a video about his life because most students are visual learners, including a short video is a great way to hook your students into wanting to learn more. Then, have a different activity about apples during the week that will help them not only learn about Johnny Appleseed but the science of apples. Incorporate all subjects into your lessons. Here are some activities that are easy to plan, but hits standards:
- Sort apples by color or a large graphing chart.
- Make home-made applesauce. (My favorite easy recipe will be at the bottom of this post.)
- Dissect an apple so students can see the seeds.
- Make apple crafts!
- Label the parts of the apple. (skin, flesh, seeds, stem, core)
- Write a letter to Johnny Appleseed.
- Count the apple seeds during math.
- Incorporate the 5 senses by letting students smell and taste different types of apples.
- Invite parents to send in apples. (I use these all week for the activities above.)
- Have students think about their favorite color or flavor or apple. They can make a graph to see what kind was the class’ most popular.
- Make apple glasses for students to use while reading about apples facts or apple books.
- Have an APPLE PARTY! Invite parents to send in apples snacks to share with the class so students can see how many different ways apples are used for ingredients.
Here is my favorite EASY applesauce recipe!
First, peel the apples. Next, remove the cores out of all your apples, (you need about 1 apple per kid in your class) cube the apples and place them in a crock pot on high. Do this as a whole group activity in the morning. The room will smell SO GOOD!
I like to have parent volunteers cut up the apples in front of the students or just send them in already cut up in bags. Then, cut one apple to show them the inside and let the students pour the rest of the cubes into the crock pot. Finally, add about 1/2 a cup of Cinnamon Red Hots Candies into the pot. The red hots add some sugar and cinnamon flavoring. The red color makes the applesauce different and fun for the students. Even students who said they hated apples, eat it and LOVE IT. I leave it on high, mash it up with a potato masher later. About 30 minutes before you want to serve it (at the end of the day, so it had about 3 or 4 hours of cooking) let it cool off before giving it to the kids. It’s warm, but not hot. SO YUMMY!