Courtney’s Corner – August-September Newsletter

Tallmadge School

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We started off our school year focusing on grace and courtesy to teach and fulfill our student’s innate need for order. Every student has a need to know and to absorb the social structures in order to be

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more at ease in their environment. Grace and courtesy lessons give the student the vocabulary, actions, and steps required for them to build their awareness and responsiveness of those around them. We worked on walking in the classroom, using our inside voices while in the school building, using kind words to one another, using safe hands, how to clean up our area when we are done working and how to use our words to express our feelings.

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The third week of school we talked and learned about community helpers. We had many of volunteer community helpers come into the classroom and talk to the children. They briefly described their occupation, by talking about where they work, what they wear, tools they use, and tasks they perform. I would like to thank all of the volunteers who came into the classroom! It was a wonderful learning experience for both the students and myself! The fourth week of school we discussed families and the students shared their family trees with their friends. Their family trees included their name, parents, grandparents, and great-grandparents. The students also brought pictures of their families either on the family tree or hard copies for the children to share with their friends. The children enjoyed learning more about their friends and where they came from. It was great to see the students discover the differences and similarities in all of the families and accept every family for who they are.   We ended the month of September talking about feelings and emotions. The students brainstormed things they could do when they were angry, happy, sad, frustrated, and excited. Then they discussed with one another whether the reaction they came up with was a good choice or a bad choice. The students did a great job learning how to manage their emotions. We role played how to process, identify and appropriately express their emotions as much as possible. After a few days of talking about feeling and emotions it was great to hear the students tell their friends what they were feeling and why on their own.

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Kindergarten

We kicked off Kindergarten with a lot Geography. The students learned about the seven continents, fun facts about the continents, and a few countries in each continent. The students became very familiar with the cardinal directions, the equator, the prime meridian, and the hemispheres. We took a look at our home state of Ohio and the surrounding states (their abbreviation and nickname). Make sure you ask your child all about Ohio! They will be able to tell you that the cardinal is the official bird, scarlet carnation the official flower, lady bug is the official insect, and tomato juice is the official drink. They learned how we are the buckeye state and that the official rock and roll song is Hang on Sloopy.

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Art

The first month of school flew by, and the students have already learned so much in art class with Ms. Michele. Her first unit of study is “What is Art?” We learned what an artist is and what they do. The children will get to explore the color wheel and art terms. They will be learning key art rules and how to use the art materials.

Ms. Michele kicked off her unit with a project called “My Favorite Animal” inspired by Eric Carle. She read “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” and then discussed the techniques Mr. Carle uses in his illustrations. He uses overlapping colors of tissue paper to create the wonderful pictures in his books. The students then made textured rubbings on tissue paper and glued them together on a piece of paper to create their favorite animal.

The next concept the students learned was about primary colors. They learned that these colors are blue, red, and yellow. These colors can be mixed together to create other colors. The project for the second week was “My House.” Ms. Michele was inspired by Piet Mondrian’s “Composition in Red, Blue, and Yellow” due to his use of the three primary colors. The students mapped out their house using black Popsicle sticks to create the same shapes that Mondrian used in his art piece, and red, yellow, and blue paint.

Our last lesson of the month was entitled “The Best Playground Ever.” Ms. Michele showed the students pictures of different playgrounds. One was a typical playground we see in our neighborhoods, one was made completely out of nets, and the last one was shaped like a whale. The students discussed the different shapes and lines of the equipment and discovered that art isn’t just flat. They were then allowed to create their own playground by twisting, bending, crimping, and rolling pieces of paper and then gluing them to a base.

We all want to thank Ms. Michele for bringing in her wonderful, creative ideas and are excited to learn more next month!

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Science

For our first science experiment of the year the students learned how liquids like water and milk have a property known as surface tension. We used soap, milk, and food coloring to experiment with reducing the surface tension to see what would happen. The students first put food coloring in the milk and noticed that the drops of food coloring just sat on the surface where we placed them in the milk. We discovered that is because food coloring is less dense than milk, so it floats on the surface, and the colors do not mix because we didn’t stir the milk. Then the students wanted to see some action so we added a drop of soap. The soap reduced the surface tension of the milk by dissolving the fat molecules and the food coloring started to move with the surface!

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Music

“It’s music time today. Time to sing and play. It’s lots of fun to sing and learn. It’s music time today.” The students have learned that this song is true for music class with Ms. Lisa. At the start of every music class, Ms. Lisa sings this with the students to get them excited and ready to learn. Our returning students were so thrilled to start music class and our new students have found out what a joy it is to spend time with Ms. Lisa.

During this past month, the children met our wonderful music teacher, Ms. Lisa and were introduced to many musical concepts. They have experienced how to use rhythm sticks, egg shakers, and tambourines. The class learned what a whole, half, quarter, and eighth note look like and how many beats each one receives. Ms. Lisa also shared with us some fun classics, such as “London Bridge,” “The ABC’s,” “The Hokey Pokey,” and “I’m a Little Tea Pot.” The students always enjoy having Ms. Lisa come each week and we can’t wait to learn more next month!

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October 2014 Monthly Overview | Tallmadge Campus

Our Academic Enrichment time is daily from 12:00-1:00pm.  This time is specifically designed for our Kindergarten students to join together as a group to work and progress through the advanced materials and lessons in the Montessori primary curriculum. Throughout the school day in their classroom they are still working individually with their classroom teacher on these and other materials at their level.

 9/29: Biggest (Solar System) to Smallest (your home)

  • Review hemispheres
  • Introduction to solar system and planets
  • Our continent, our country, state and county
  • City, street, address and phone numbers

10/6: Landforms

  • Island/Lake, Isthmus/Straight
  • Bay/Cape, Peninsula/Gulf
  • Archipelago/Chain of Lakes
  • Use of landform cards, and water trays

10/13: Telling Time

  • Parts of the clock
  • Telling time to the hour
  • Telling time to the half hour
  • Flashcards, Clock & Worksheets

10/20: Telling Time

  • Telling time to the quarter hour (quarter past/ quarter till)
  • Flashcards, Clock & Worksheets

10/27: Telling Time

  • Review telling time to the hour, half and quarter hours
  • Telling time to the minute
  • Flashcards, Clock & Worksheets

Letters of the week
9/29: Dd
10/6: Ee
10/13: Ff
10/20: Gg
10/27: Hh

Synonyms of the week
9/29: ACTIVE, lively, energetic, dynamic, vigorous, hasty
10/6: CALM, peaceful, quiet, inactive, serene, slow
10/13: HOT, burning, scorching, blazing, boiling, sizzling
10/20: COLD, freezing, chilly, frigid, frozen, cool
10/27: NEW, novel, fresh, original, unique, current, unused

 

Things to do at home this month to reinforce our themes:

  • Practice telling time on the clock at home. When you sit down to dinner, ask them to tell you what time it is, when they go to bed, have them check the clock. Have fun with Time!

October 2014 Monthly Overview | Cuyahoga Falls Campus

Our Academic Enrichment time is daily from 12:00-1:00pm.  This time is specifically designed for our Kindergarten students to join together as a group to work and progress through the advanced materials and lessons in the Montessori primary curriculum. Throughout the school day in their classroom they are still working individually with their classroom teacher on these and other materials at their level.

09/29:      Biggest (Solar System) to Smallest (your home)

  • Review hemispheres
  • Introduction to solar system and planets
  • Our continent, our country, state and county
  • City, street, address and phone numbers

10/06: Landforms

  • Island/Lake, Isthmus/Straight
  • Bay/Cape, Peninsula/Gulf
  • Archipelago/Chain of Lakes
  • Use of landform cards, and water trays

10/13: Telling Time

  • Parts of the clock
  • Telling time to the hour
  • Telling time to the half hour
  • Flashcards, Clock & Worksheets

10/20: Telling Time

  • Telling time to the quarter hour (quarter past/ quarter till)
  • Flashcards, Clock & Worksheets

10/27: Telling Time

  • Review telling time to the hour, half and quarter hours
  • Telling time to the minute
  • Flashcards, Clock & Worksheets

Sight Words of the Week:
09/29: from he
10/06: you his
10/13: for with
10/20: she were
10/27: use your

Synonyms of the Week: Try to find each word in books as you read to your child.
09/29: ACTIVE, lively, energetic, dynamic, vigorous, hasty
10/06: CALM, peaceful, quiet, inactive, serene, slow
10/13: HOT, burning, scorching, blazing, boiling, sizzling
10/20: COLD, freezing, chilly, frigid, frozen, cool
10/27: NEW, novel, fresh, original, unique, current, unused

 

Things to do at Home this Month:

  • Practice telling time on the clock at home. When you sit down to dinner, ask them to tell you what time it is, when they go to bed, have them check the clock.  Have fun with Time!

Mr. John will be sending homework home to reinforce these lessons. Please turn homework into the orange box outside of Mr. John’s classroom.  Please email him if you have any questions: jkotradi@thesmarterkids.com.

 


October 2014 Monthly Overview

Themes of the Week
(in addition to Montessori Work time)

9/29: Five Senses

  • The students will learn about their five senses and their parts of the body that correspond to each sense.

10/6: Leaves

  • The students observe the differences in leaf shape.
  • The students observe the different fall colors and the fun we can have with leaves.
  • The students sort a variety of fall objects.
  • The students learn different textures and identify them.

10/13: Apples

  • The students will describe an apple using all of their senses.
  • The students will discuss the shapes apples come in.
  • The students will taste test red, green, and yellow apples.
  • The students will explore the inside of an apple.

10/20: Pumpkins

  • The students will identify feeling words such as happy, sad, scared, etc.
  • The students will guess and count how many seeds are in a pumpkin.
  • The students will practice measuring to make a treat.
  • The students will practice team work.

10/27: Bats

  • The students will learn about the life cycle of a bat.
  • The students will research facts about bats.
  • Halloween party (Friday, October 31st)

Letters of the week
9/29: Dd
10/6: Ee
10/13: Ff
10/20: Gg
10/27: Hh

Things to do at home this month to reinforce our themes:

  • Have students describe things at home using their senses.
  • Go on a family walk to see how many different kinds of leaves you can find together.
  • Take a trip to an apple orchard.
  • Make homemade applesauce from your child’s favorite apple.
  • Bake pumpkin seeds.
  • Take a trip to a pumpkin patch.
  • Research other nocturnal animals.

October 2014 Monthly Overview

Themes of the Week
(in addition to Montessori Work time)

09/29:    Down On The Farm

  • Learning ASL farm animal signs
  • Learning what animals live on a farm
  • Life cycle of the chicken
  • Making butter, learning about other foods made from milk
  • Sink or float experiment with eggs

10/6:      Healthy Eating

  • Learning about the food pyramid
  • Learning about foods that are beneficial for our bodies and what is “junk food”
  • Learning the difference between fruits and vegetables
  • Making a healthy snack as a class
  • Singing songs that reinforce healthy food choices

10/13:    All About Spiders

  • Learning the parts of the spider
  • Stories about spiders-”The Very Busy Spider” by Eric Carl, and we’ll begin reading “Charlotte’s Web
  • Discuss the ways spiders are helpful
  • Discussing the difference between arachnids and insects
  • Learn about the spider life cycle

10/20:    All About Bats

  • Learning the parts of the bat
  • Reading “Stellaluna”
  • Learning about echolocation, and how it helps certain species of bats see
  • Ven Diagram comparing bats to birds
  • Making a “bat cave”

10/27      All About Pumpkins/Halloween

  • Discuss how pumpkins grow and the pumpkin life cycle
  • Discuss what we can make with pumpkins
  • Decorating our own white pumpkin in class using crayons
  • Taste testing pumpkin pie
  • Singing songs about Halloween and Pumpkins
  • Halloween Party Friday, October 31st! 

Letters of the Week: Try to find objects that begin with each letter wherever you go with your child.
9/29: Pp
10/6: Yy
10/13:Ss
10/20: Ii
10/27: ie

Sight Words of the Week: Try to find each word in books as you read to your child.
9/29: Pig
10/6: Yes
10/13: Sit
10/20: It
10/27: Pie

Things to do at Home this Month to reinforce our themes:

  • Plan a healthy meal as a family. Include your child in the preparation.
  • Ask your child to show you some of the ASL signs they’ve learned for farm animals.
  • While reading to your child, point out the sight words they are learning this month.
  • Pick out a pumpkin together with your child. Discuss with them what they have learned about how pumpkins grow, what foods we can make with pumpkin, etc.

October 2014 Monthly Overview

Themes of the Week
(in addition to Montessori Work time)

09/29: All About Apples

  • Johnny Appleseed
  • Life cycle of an apple
  • Apple graphing, apple tasting and cooking with apples

Preschool lesson (afternoon) We will be reviewing the letter “Ee” and will learn the ASL sign for “E.”  Students will be making different apple crafts.

10/06: On The Farm

  • Jobs found on the farm
  • Animals found on the farm, categorizing animals into groups
  • Food from the farm
  • Machinery found on the farm

Preschool lesson (afternoon) We will be reviewing the letter “Ff” and will learn the ASL sign for “F.” Student will be making different farm crafts and learning about farm animals.

10/13: All About the Fall

  • Four seasons
  • Leaves and chlorophyll, leaf graphing
  • Nature walk
  • Acorns and squirrels
  • History of the scarecrow

Preschool lesson (afternoon)  We will be reviewing the letter “Gf” and will learn the ASL sign for “G.” Students will enjoy fun fall crafts. 

10/20: All About Pumpkins

  • Properties of a pumpkin
  • Life cycle of a pumpkin
  • Use our 5 senses to observe/communicate about pumpkins. Conduct a buoyancy experiment to discover whether a 
pumpkin will sink or float in water.

Preschool lesson (afternoon) We will be reviewing the letter “Hh” and will learn the ASL sign for “H.” Studets will be learning all about pumpkins and will enjoy making pumpkin crafts.

10/27: History of Halloween

  • History of Halloween
  • Halloween themed works, activities and lots of fun!
  • Halloween Party Friday, October 31st!

Preschool lesson (afternoon) We will be reviewing the letter “Ii” and will learn the ASL sign for “I.” Students will enjoy Halloween crafts, activities and will even write their own Halloween story.

Letters of the Week: Try to find objects that begin with each letter wherever you go with your child.
09/29: Ee
10/06: Ff
10/13: Gg
10/20: Hh
10/27: Ii

Sight Words of the Week: Try to find each word in books as you read to your child.
09/29: And
10/06: He
10/13: She
10/20: Has
10/27: For

Things to do at Home this Month to reinforce our themes:

  • While reading a book have your child point to all of the letter of the week she/he can find. Have them do this with the sight words as well. Play I‐Spy using things that only start with the letter of the week/ sight words.
  • Go apple picking! Cut an apple in half and create apple prints. When you cut an apple, count together to see how many seeds there are. Every day you can create a new apple dish (applesauce, baked apple crisps, apple pie, etc.) Enjoy the Fall!
  • Make a collage from pictures in magazines of items you would find on a farm
  • Go on a “Fall Walk” together. Talk about what colors you see, the sounds you hear, and what the air smells like. Collect leaves 
and take them home for leaf rubbings. Go to a pumpkin patch and find a pumpkin together. Guess how many seeds are in‐ side your pumpkin. When you clean out the pumpkin count the seeds together.

October 2014 Monthly Overview

Themes of the Week
(in addition to Montessori Work time)

 
10/06:     Reptiles
  • Introduction to reptiles, examples of reptiles
  • All reptiles are cold blooded, vertebrates (spine),
  • All reptiles have scales, lay eggs with hard shell
 Preschool lesson (afternoon): We will be learning different pumpkin facts and enjoying pumpkin themed crafts and activities.
 
10/13: Amphibians
  • Introduction to amphibians, examples of amphibians
  • Amphibians are cold blooded, live on land and water
  • All amphibians have soft, moist skin and are vertebrates (spine)
 Preschool lesson (afternoon): We will be learning different tastes of fall and enjoying fall themed crafts and activities.
 
10/20: Fish
  • Introduction to fish, examples of fish
  • All fish are cold blooded, live in water, most have scales
  • Fish are vertebrates, most have gills and fins
 Preschool lesson (afternoon): We will be learning different tastes of fall and enjoying fall themed crafts and activities.
 
10/27: Birds
  • Introduction to birds, examples of birds
  • All birds have feathers and are warm blooded
  • All birds are vertebrates, lay eggs with shells, have wings
  • Penguins are a birds that can’t fly
  • Halloween Party: Friday, October 31st
 Preschool lesson (afternoon): We will be learning the history of Halloween and enjoying Halloween themed crafts and activities.
 
 
Letters of the Week: Try to find objects that begin with each letter wherever you go with your child.
10/06: Gg
10/13: Hh
10/20: Ii
10/27: Jj
Rhyming Words of the Week: Try to find each word in books as you read to your child.
10/06: BID, did, hid, kid, lid, rid,                     
10/13: BIT, fit, hit, kit, lit, mit, pit, sit            
10/20: BIN, fin, kin, pin, sin, tin, win              
10/27: BIP, dip, hip, lip, nip, rip, sip, tip
 
Things to do at Home this Month to reinforce our themes:
  • Look for our words of the week when reading a story, cut out pictures beginning with the letters of the week. 
  • Play “I Spy” with items beginning with the letter of the week, or find things around your home that begin with the letter of the week.
  • Go to the Zoo together, and talk about what each animal is? A Bird, A Mammal, Reptile, Amphibian, or Fish.
  • Read a book together about your child’s favorite animal!  Is it a Vertebrate or Invertebrate?  What are the babies called?
 

Courtney’s Class Overview – September 2014

Themes of the week
(in addition to Montessori Work Time)

8/26 and 9/2: Ground Rules

  • Learning to greet others.
  • Learning to have conservations.
  • Learning to speak to others.
  • Learning to listen to others.
  • Learning to respond to others.
  • Learning to say please and thank you to others.
  • Learning to observe others.
  • Learning to respectfully interrupt.
  • Learning from others.
  • Learning to open door for someone else.
  • Learning to recognize situations in which to help others.
  • Passing in front of another respectfully.
  • Learning how to say excuse me.

9/8: Community Helpers

  • The students will learn about police officers, fire fighters, mail carriers, soldiers, bakers, farmers, doctors, and teachers throughout the week. They will not only learn about these community helpers; they will also be able to explain in detail why each one is very important to our lives.

9/15: My Family

  • The students will illustrate a picture of their family.
  • The students will have a discussion on the importance of families to each of us and the students will be able to identify one reason why their family is important to them.
  • Create a family tree together (Due Friday September 12th)

9/22: Feelings/Emotions

  • The students learn how to identify, handle, and understand the things they may feel and how to act about them.

Letters of the week

9/8: Aa
9/15: Bb
9/22: Cc

Sight word of the week

9/8: the
9/15: of
9/22: an

Things to do at home this month to reinforce our themes:

  • Try to find objects that begin with the letter of the week wherever you go with your child.
  • Encourage grace and courtesy when you see your child displaying it to another or you.
  • Talk about the importance of 911 and when you should call and practice dialing it.
  • Practice dialing your telephone number with your child.
  • Start a family tradition by setting a night a week aside for a family movie or game night.
  • If your child displays an emotion they are unfamiliar with talk about it and how to handle it together.

Mr. John’s Classroom Overview – September 2014

Themes of the Week
(in addition to Montessori Work time)

8/25‐9/05 Ground Rules / Introduction of Materials

  • Ringing of the bell, circle walk, line time
  • Process of working with a materials, rolling mats, carrying trays & work areas
  • Respecting teachers, classmates and the materials
  • Daily demonstration of materials from all areas of the classroom

9/08: Healthy Habits

  • The importance of washing hands, bathing, brushing teeth (eliminate germs, prevent cavities)
  • The importance of sleep. Why we need sleep & sleep cycle
  • The importance of exercise (walking, running, swimming, etc)
  • The importance of eating well (“grow foods”)
  • Preschool lesson– Friendship

9/15: Food Groups

  • Eating Healthy, Moderation
  • Focus on the different food groups, sorting foods belonging in each
  • Servings and examples of each
  • Preschool lesson‐Apples

9/22: Living / Non Living

  • Living things (grow, reproduce, obtain and use energy, exchange gases) adapt to their environment
  • Non Living things, examples
  • Categorization of Living and Non Living
  • Preschool Lesson– Family

09/29: Mammals

  • Introduction to mammals, examples of mammals
  • All mammals have hair, warm blooded, eat mother’s milk
  • All mammals are vertebrates (spine), lungs to breathe, born alive
  • Bats are the ONLY mammal that can fly
  • Preschool Lesson– The season of Autumn/Fall

Letters of the Week: Try to find objects that begin with each letter wherever you go with your child.

8/25: Aa
9/01: Bb
9/08: Cc
9/15: Dd
9/22: Ee
9/29: Ff

Rhyming Words of the Week: Try to find each word in books as you read to your child.

8/25: BAT, cat, fat, hat, mat, pat, sat
9/01: BAN, can, dan, fan, man, pan, tan
9/08: BAP, map, cap, gap, lap, nap, sap
9/15: BAG, sag, jag, lag, nag, tag, rag wag
9/22: BAD, dad, fad, had, lad, mad, sad
9/29: BIG, dig, fig, jig, pig, rig, wig

Things to do at Home this Month to reinforce our themes:

  • Make a collage with pictures and objects that start with the letters of the week.
  • While eating together, categorize your meal into food groups with your child.
  • Follow this link to find a worksheet to complete together for living and non living things. (Circle the living things and color together)
  • Read a book about your child’s favorite mammal together!

Kristen’s Class Overview – September 2014

Themes of the Week
(in addition to Individual Montessori Work time)

08/25: Grace and Courtesy / Ground Rules

  • Learning Control of Movement-Rolling A Rug, Carrying A Tray, and Carrying A Chair.
  • Learning Grace And Courtesy- How to Introduce Yourself, How To Say Please And Thank You, How To Interrupt Another.
  • Learning classroom rules.
  • Discussing what it means to be kind to others and what are “kind words”.
  • Making a “Kind Words Chain” in pre-school lesson.

9/1: Grace And Courtesy/Ground Rules

  • Reading the book, “The Bear That Was Chicken” and discussing with the children how they felt before coming to school and how they feel now about school.
  • Lessons on saying “Excuse Me”, “I’m Sorry”, and “Thank You”.
  • Singing songs and playing game to review what we’ve learned about classroom rules and manners.
  • Having the children write our classroom rules and display them in the classroom.
  • Read the book “There’s A Bird On Your Head”. Discuss how to speak to someone when we’re frustrated.

9/8: All About Me

  • “ Who’s Baby Picture Is This?” guessing game. (Be sure to send in a baby picture of your child with them this week.)
  • Discussing what makes each of us special: hair color, eye color, likes and dislikes, our birthdays, our names, our emotions, etc.
  • Graphing our differences such as hair and eye color.
  • Practicing saying our full names.
  • Learning our birth dates.

9/15 All About Apples

  • Read the story “Little Bear’s Star”- Story about an apple.
  • Sorting apples by size and color.
  • Learning the fractions of one whole and one half using an apple.
  • Taste testing different color apples and making a graph, as a class, of our favorites.
  • Learning the Apple Life Cycle.

9/22 All About Fall

  • Discuss differences between Summer and Fall.
  • Go on a nature walk outside to find leaves.
  • Painting with leaves.
  • Learning the parts of the leaf.
  • Learning Robert Frost poem about Fall.

Letters of the Week: Try to find objects that begin with each letter wherever you go with your child.

8/25: Aa
9/1: Cc
9/8: Rr
9/15: Tt
9/25: Review Of All Four Letters

Sight Words of the Week: Try to find each word in books as you read to your child.

8/25: at
9/1: cat
9/8: rat
9/15: tap
9/25: Review All Four Sight Words

Things to do at Home this Month to reinforce our themes:

  • While reading a book have your child point to all of the letter of the week she/he can find. Have them do this with the sight words as well. Play I-Spy using things that only start with the letter of the week.
  • Go on a walk as a family. As Fall comes, point out the differences you see in nature, now that the weather is changing.
  • While reading to your child, point out the sight words they are learning this month.
  • Find a fun apple recipe to try as a family. Let your child practicing measuring the ingredients, assemble the ingredients, etc. Discuss with your child the other things that can be made with apples