Thursday, October 3, 2013


Presented at Bellevue Public Library on Thursday, October 3, 2013, in partnership with Momaha, the Omaha World-Herald's online community for moms.


Ten Red Apples by Pat Hutchins

Much of this book can be sung to the tune of "Old MacDonald"!  I like to share it using a combination of sung and spoken words.  Children will very quickly pick up on the repeated phrases:
"Ten (nine, eight, etc.) red apples hanging on the tree.  Yippee! Fiddle-dee-fee!"

An Apple a Day by Melvin Berger

Five Red Apples

Five red apples growing on a tree.
(raise hands out to form branches)

There's some for you and some for me!
(point to others, then to self)

When we shake the tree just so,
(shake body)

Five red apples will fall below.
(close, then open fist as though dropping each apple)


If You're Happy and You Know It

If you're happy and you know it,
Clap your hands! (2x)
If you're happy and you know it,
Then your face will surely show it!
If you're happy and you know it,
Clap your hands!

Additional verses:
...stomp your feet
...shout hooray!
...munch an apple

Falling Leaves
For this activity I use a piece of instrumental music entitled "The Trees Weep Leaves" by David Huntsinger.  I discovered it on a CD entitled "Autumn in New England".  The music can be purchased online.  The children, parents and I held lengths of yellow, red, and orange paper streamers as we listened to the music.  As the music began, we let our "leaves" gently float and tumble to the floor.  As the music increased in volume and tempo, we made the leaves swirl and fly as we pretended they were caught up in the wind.  There are several tempo/volume changes, so children get to practice their listening skills.
Here is a short video clip:

Here are some photos from the event:

Children who arrived a few minutes early had time to
play with our colorful parachute.

We walked around in a circle...

Then we lifted the parachute over our heads...
And ran underneath!

Then we collapsed in a heap!

Storytime begins!
"If you're happy and you know it clap your hands!!"


After storytime we made our own fresh applesauce!
Some children used a potato masher to squish the apples.

Other children tried using the applesauce cone which
works like a sieve, pressing the apple pulp through
the small holes and into a bowl.

We extend our thanks to The Cake Specialist for providing the cookies for tonight's storytime, as well as the apples for our applesauce-making activity!
Making Applesauce at Home
For tonight's event I used Jonathan Apples, but other varieties work well, too, such as Golden Delicious, Fuji, and Granny Smith.  When using the applesauce cone, I just quarter the apples - no need to peel them or remove the seeds and stems.  The cone will separate them from the sauce - and including the peels adds color to your sauce.  If you plan to use a potato masher, just quarter the apples and remove the stems and cores.  I put 3 lbs. of apples in a Dutch oven with a small amount of water - about an inch or so at the bottom.  I also added 3-4 cinnamon sticks and let them sit in the water as the apples cooked.  I brought the water to a boil, then reduced the heat and simmered, covered, for about 20-30 minutes, until the apples were tender. 
Use the cone or potato masher to turn the cooked apples into applesauce.  You could also use a food processor, but doing it by hand is much more satisfying and is a great activity for children and adults!
I'd love to hear your comments if you decide to make homemade applesauce with your children in the coming weeks!
   ~ Mrs. B.

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