Inside: This toddler apple activity includes lots of action, so it’s the perfect fall idea for busy little kids!
Stamping fresh apple halves in paint is an art activity that’s been around for a long time. One of those classics you probably did as a child, too. And it really is such a fun activity with lots of arm movement and loud tap, tap, taps as the apple is slapped onto the paper.
But while this well-known art activity is loved by preschoolers, it can be really frustrating for a toddler.
Imagine that small hand trying to reach around the apple half, then dipping it into wet tempera paint. Now that hand needs to move that slippery apple half to the paper. And while being transferred to the paper, the apple is too slippery to handle so it drops.
Perhaps on the table.
Perhaps on the chair.
Perhaps on the floor.
And now the toddler is frustrated. His short attention span encourages him to move on to something else.
Yep, I’ve seen this many times. And I can’t believe how long it took me to find an easier way. It completely changed this fall art activity.
How to Put Together a Toddler Apple Activity with Lots of Action
Let me first let you know that I honestly cannot say this is my idea. In fact, I’m most certain it’s not. I somehow discovered it many years ago, long before Pinterest was born.
The simple trick to adapting this apple stamping activity for toddlers is carving a handle on the round side of the apple slice.
I will now add another trick. Well, actually, a tip.
To really make this activity work with toddlers, have everything ready before you get them to the art table.
Trust me on this.
Related: The Best Ideas for Busy Toddlers
Setting up this toddler apple activity:
Before we opened our classroom door and greeted our toddlers, we cut the apples in half and then carved the handles into them. Rather than trying to explain how we did this, I will show you in this video:
Pour the paint into shallow containers.
Place one apple half in each container of paint.
Place everything on the table.
It’s ready to go!
Now here’s what you will need:
- Apples, cut in half
- Red washable tempera paint
- Paper that has an apple outline. Note: I just happened to make for this activity and I am sharing with you towards the end of this post.
Once your toddlers are seated at the table (or standing, as some busy toddlers don’t like to sit, so we just remove the chair), you might need to demonstrate how to transfer the apple from the container of paint to the paper.
They might start off slowly, or they might put all their energy into it. But once they get started, they are hooked.
After all, this involves big movements as the entire arm is going up and down.
And there is noise as the apple hits the paper.
This is what toddlers love. It’s the process that matters most!
Related: Easy Art Tips for Toddlers
Once they are finished, let their artwork dry.
You can stop at this point.
You can cut the apple out and glue it to green paper.
And there you go!
A fun toddler activity that involves lots of movement!
Download your apple printable here:
While we are on the subject of apples, check out this mega collection of apple activities!