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Literature Based Kindergarten Curriculum, Johnny Appleseed.

Primary Literature

  • Johnny Appleseed by Steven Kellogg. This biography briefly covers Johnny Chapman's life from his birth to his death. The prose appeals to young listeners and is easy for them to follow along. The whimsical and colorful illustrations are also captivating.

  • Vocabulary words to review.
    • tall tale -  an exaggeration of a story, has unbelievable elements
    • tranquil - quiet and calm
    • boisterous - noisy and rowdy
    • cellar - a room below the ground
    • orchard - land where fruit trees grow
    • frontier - the edge of settled land/undiscovered

Complementary Literature 
  • The Seasons of Arnold's Apple Tree by Gail Gibbons, tells tale of a young boy and the adventures he has with his apple tree. It offers a kid friendly explanation of what happens to an apple tree during the different seasons. 
  • Apples also by Gail Gibbons, explains in kid friendly terms the parts and life cycle of an apple. It also offers a brief history, shows different varieties, and uses of an apple
  • The Apple Pie that Papa Baked - A play off the song The House that Jack Built. This cute repetitive story is a delight to read and listen too. Even though this book is newer (2007) the illustrations remind me of classic children’s books, like those by Virginia Lee Burton; they are filled with detail but yet there is something simplistic about them. 

Other Complementary Materials
  • American Legends: Johnny Appleseed,  This animated tale from Disney focus more on the legend than fact, but it was very enjoyable to watch. It also spoke to the spirit of why Johnny Appleseed became such a popular tale. 
  • Wholesome Heros with Rick Sowash: Johnny Appleseed, I found this film to be a little dull and corny at some points but my children, however, seemed to enjoy it. It was very factual and offered explanations on why/how Johnny Chapman became such a tall tale. 

Learning Activities/Games

  • Green and red apple dice game: children roll dice to see how many of their apples (pom poms) the can take off from the tree. The first child to remove all their apples wins.

Supplies: 4 sheets of card-stock, tempera paint, glitter, 24 pipe cleaners, hot glue, 
tissue paper, white glue, buttons, and pom poms

Step 1: Paint (seasonal) backgrounds on to each card-stock.

Step 2 - Twist six pipe cleaners together at the bottom to
form a trunk. Fan out tops to make branches. Repeat three more times. 

Step 3 - Once paint is dry, use hot glue to secure pipe cleaners to card-stock.
(white glue also works, but it's tedious)

Step 4: Now add tissue paper, pom-poms, glitter, etc to each tree to represent
the changes of a season. 

finished product

If you are looking for more apple themed ideas please stop by my apple unit pinterest board or check out our homeschool page.


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