First Grade Apple Lesson
A first grade teacher and I teamed up for a lesson about apples. The 2-day lesson included several read a louds about the life cycle of the apple tree and what wonderful things we get from apples, an apple tasting, making a class pictograph of your favorite kind of apple, how applesauce is made, and a homemade apple sauce tasting.
The first thing we did when the students came to the library is fill out a graphic organizer on the white board as a class—anything and everything the students could tell me about apples. Then I read several books about apples and the apple harvest. We revisited the graphic organizer to see if there was anything students wanted to add based on the information from the books we just read.
Next, we had an apple tasting. Every student ate a piece of green apple, yellow apple, and red apple. We discussed words like “sour” and “tart.” Once each student decided on his/her favorite apple, they got a die-cut of their favorite apple and put it on the pictograph. We then talked about the graph: what apple do students like the most? What apple do students like the least? How many more students like one kind of apple over another kind.
After the pictograph discussion, we talked about the steps involved in making applesauce. All the ingredients were shown to the students. They got to smell the different spices, see how a peeler works, and see how a slow cooker works. (When they smelled the spices, they made comments like: “That smells like my oatmeal.” Cute!)
Rounding out the first day of the 2-day lesson, the students completed an apple book printed from Enchanted Learning. Before leaving the library, they were told they would come back tomorrow to finish the lesson. Several students cheered: “YAY! We are coming back to the library tomorrow.” You gotta love hearing that as a librarian!
At home that evening I peeled about 16 apples and put everything in the slow cooker to make the apple sauce. The next morning, everything was ready!
When the students came in for the second day of everything apples, they were so excited! We first reviewed things from the day before—we revisited the pictograph, we talked about the steps (in the correct order) of making applesauce, and we talked about all the facts they learned about apples and the life cycle of the apple tree. Then everyone got a bowl of homemade applesauce. Comments from the students: “Ms. Tigges, you are genius.” “Ms.Tigges, you are a rock star.” I was feeling the love!
The students enjoyed the lesson. The students felt comfortable in the library. The students read non-fiction books. Mission accomplished!
Now I hope to take this lesson and turn it into a Media Festival project with a few of the students.
Some age-appropriate apple books:
The Seasons of Arnold’s Apple Tree by Gail Gibbons
Apples Grow on a Tree by Mari Schuh
Picking Apples by Gail Saunders-Smith
Apples by Gail Gibbons
Apples by Ken Robbins
Apples by Elaine Landau
How Do Apples Grow? By Betsy Maestro
Seed, Sprout, Fruit: An Apple Tree Life Cycle by Shannon Knudsen
Apples, Apples, Apples by Nancy Elizabeth Wallace
Apples, Apples Everywhere! Learning about Apple Harvests by Robin Koontz
Slow cooker apple sauce recipe:
Anja Tigges, Ed.S.
William J. Scott Elementary School, Atlanta Public Schools
1752 Hollywood Road
Atlanta, GA 30318
404. 802. 7000