To begin our newest theme, I picked a project that put the spotlight on one of our favorite finger plays, Way Up High in the Apple Tree. This is already an interactive rhyme so the new spin makes it tactile as well – a five red apple felt board. With that being said, this is a craft for parents and caregivers, and an activity for 2-5yo (be forewarned, there are small pieces though.)
Way up high, in an apple tree
Five red apples smiled at me.
So I shook that tree as hard as I could.
Down came an apple, mmm it was good!
Surprisingly, I had never heard this rhyme until last year during one of our library’s “making music” story times. We’ve sung this at least once a day since then since apples are hands-down the favorite fruit in our house.
Craft/Activity/Snack: DIY Mini Felt Board Activity
Objective: Sing a rhyme and play with the board by removing each apple.
Skills Utilized: sensory skills, fine motor, verbal skills, repetition, counting
Suggested Reading: Ten Red Apples by Pat Hutchins
Materials: Tacky glue, cardboard (I used the front of a Nilla wafers box), and an assortment of felt to create the scene.
First, you’ll want to cut a neutral shade of felt to fit your cardboard piece:
Then you’ll want to apply glue to the four edges of the cardboard and attach the felt. Since glue tends to seep through felt, I don’t recommend applying glue to the entire surface of the cardboard, unless you’re going to apply a very thin layer.
To create the tree, I started by making a trunk shape. Once I cut a size I liked, I placed it right on the board so move on to the next piece. The magic of felt boards is that each decorative piece can be separate and no glue is needed since their texture allows them to stick directly together.
On to the leafy portion of the tree which I did in a bright green:
And then the five red apples! Cutting small apples is quite easy – you could do circles or itty bitty apples like mine by cutting what looks like rounded hearts.
And with that, you’re board is done and ready to be played with. Jasper knows this rhyme by heart and was so happy to have little apples to remove (and dramatically pretend to eat ::sigh::) and count.
I’m so happy we finally made a mini felt board because I forgot just how much I loved these in a classroom setting. Felt is so tough and it’s virtually indestructible. I’m sure I’ll have many more felt board ideas in the future.
- Make applesauce using 5 apples
- Repeat the rhyme using different colors and add those colored apples to the felt board
- Play hi-ho cherry-o