Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Apple Picking in Pre-K

With school now in full swing, there is plenty going on to blog about. But, time is not as plentiful. I hope to bring you updates more often. And, I will keep the crafts coming as well. A few are in the works and should be ready soon :) But, right now, i am so excited to start bringing you projects from the classroom!

This year we are integrating a more child-centered approach to the class. To begin, we are using the students' art, mostly open-ended projects, to decorate the room. This past week we did a lot of work with apples. Good timing for Johnny Appleseed Day.
Dedicating a large bulletin board to a monthly theme, I created a large paper wreath. I took a square piece of bulletin board paper and folded it in half and half again. After measuring the size I wanted for the wreath in width (30 inches), I marked a measurement 1/2 that amount from the corner of the 4 folds toward the center of the paper. I tied a piece of yarn to a pencil and held the end of it at the corner of the 4 folds, then using the mark as the starting point, I traced an arc from one side of the 1/4 square to the adjacent side and cut along it. I repeated the process for the inner part of the wreath shape about 4 inches shorter. See the photos below to walk through a smaller example (I appologize for the blurriness). 

After unfolding the paper, I drew some random lines around it to mimic a grapevine wreath.
We plan to use this wreath for each new theme.

For the apples, we die-cut large apples in red, yellow, and green. After reading Picking Apples by Margaret McNamara, and looking at the three different apples, the students chose their favorite color of apple.

They were given cut up tissue paper in the same colors and glue.
They decorated their apples with the tissue, and when dry, we put them on the wreath.
Later in the day, they tasted all three apples and charted their favorites using pieces of the tissue paper.
The next day, they were given a picture of an apple to paint with the color of their choice. Some were a little more detailed and even painted the word "Apple." Pretty good for 4 year olds, I think.
Finally, they were given a piece of paper to draw their own apple and paint it. Being early in the year, still, we hear a lot of "I can't do it." But, to their surprise they did, and they looked great!
I love the bulletin board. It will look so nice for parent-teacher conferences next month!

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