After a trip to Pine Hill Orchard and taste testing several kinds of apples, strolling the quaint hills and admiring the artwork, my kids were obsessed with apples. It just so happen to be Apple Week at the daycare. I was on a mission to make apples even more exciting this year and so were the teachers at the daycare!
We vowed to focus more activities on sensory play and that meant more messy fun. We can up with these go-to fall apple activities that are easy, engaging and beautiful!
Every fall this is one of our favorite activities. Making apple prints are not only beautiful but for the industrious toddlers, it’s fun work. I have found this to be the easiest way to make prints:
- Cut apples in half so that they are flat and even (these make the best prints).
- Stick a fork in the peel side of the apple to give your toddler something to hold while printing.
- Use small amounts of paint. Too much paint distorts the prints.
- Encourage a firm bang of the apple onto the paper. Dip and press. Toddlers love industrious work, so this becomes the fun part.
Apple Relief Prints and Free Paint
This is a simple activity that makes any group of children happy to make art! Using big cut outs of apples lightly taped on the underside to a large piece of paper, offer large amounts of paint in red, yellow and orange for kids to smear about. This creates a cacophony of colors. Add glitter or red sand if your feeling it. Before the paint dries, remove the apple cut-out to make a beautiful relief painting.
I have this amazing teacher, Becca! She is the resident baker at LSH and has become a master at toddler baking. Making anything edible with 9 toddlers is nearly impossible – that’s not the goal. Play is the goal – and Becca has perfected the process. I will share the secrets:
The real secret is we don’t eat the ones they make. The exploration of ingredients is the real activity!
- Cut apples
- Dash Cinnamon
- White sugar
- Tablespoon of flour
- Offer each child a tray to work in
- Offer each child their own ingredients
- Offer each child their own spoon
Let the kids mix all these together, munch, and play away. Offer measuring cups to fill and sip, spoons to mix with, and even a small baking tin to fill.
Be aware: too much cinnamon or dry ingredients that can be inhaled can be dangerous for small children, so just use a dash and keep an eye on them as they play. In a separate bowl… make some crisp to bake!
Enjoy fall in the Valley!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Candice Chouinard has worked with youth of all ages and backgrounds, creating and implementing programming for children. She revels in hands-on, long-term, messy projects that are both fun and educational. Candice comes from a background in creative writing, as well as, child development and psychology. She owns and operates a daycare in Northampton, MA.