Apples: Crunch Them, Mash Them, Stick Them in a Pie

There are many different ways to enjoy apples. From growing to cooking, apples in our lives represent everything from autumn and America to symbolism in fairy tales. They provide an easy way for discussing the growth cycle of a fruit from seed to edible product and provide a teaching gateway into exploring healthy snacks or baking delicious treats. Their many different colors and types also provide an excellent tool for learning about color and variation. For more stories of apples, try searching keywords “apples” and “life cycles” or “apples” and “seasons” with the subject “juvenile literature” for nonfiction books. For picture books search subjects such as “apples” and “juvenile fiction” or “picture books for children.” For poetry and rhymes try searching “apples” and “children’s poetry”.” Though, if someone from the United Kingdom tells you to “go up the apples” they actually mean “stairs” from the fairly well known cockney rhyming slang where “apples and pears” equals “stairs.”


Farmer, Jacqueline
Apples. 2007.
Today, the average American consumes about sixty-five fresh apples each year. Where do so many apples come from? How do they grow? Jacqueline Farmer takes young readers on a field trip to the apple orchard to find out how apple growers turn seeds and seedlings into the many different varieties of America’s favorite fruit. Recipes, trivia, and fun facts included.
[SSHEL S Collection Q. S.634.F229a]

Powell, Consie
Amazing Apples. 2003.
Absolutely the Perfect fruit to Put in your Lunchbox and Eat Later. Acrostic poems made from apple-themed words lead readers through the growing season-from early spring buds to apple-picking time to naked tree branches resting in winter. Accompanied by beautiful, hand-colored woodblock prints, Amazing Apples also includes some apple history as well as ideas about what to do with apples. Children will enjoy these flavor-filled poems that celebrate this popular fruit.
[SSHEL S Collection S.811 P871a]

Robbins, Ken
Apples. 2002.
Apples! Apples! Apples! Crunchy and tasty, sweet and tart, in colorful shades of red, yellow, and green — sometimes all three — everyone loves apples! In this lively and vibrant book, young readers will learn how apples grow, from the planting of a tree, to the pollination of buds by bees, and on to the harvest. And then comes the fun part as apples are used to tease the taste buds in so many ways — in pies and strudel, in cider and applesauce, but most of all, in that one simple crunch when one bites into an apple’s crisp sweetness. Ken Robbins’s hand-colored photographs will make you want to take a bite yourself!
[SSHEL S Collection S.634.11 R536a]

Gibbons, Gail
Apples. 2000.
Explains how apples were brought to America, how they grow, their traditional uses and cultural significance, and some of the varieties grown.
[SSHEL S Collection S.634.11 G352a]

Spirin, Gennady
A Apple Pie. 2005.
In this spectacular recreation of one of the most beloved alphabet rhymes of all time, New York Times Best Illustrator Gennady Spirin brings to life the delicious and whimsical fortunes of an apple pie — through the alphabet! Look for the tiny butterfly in the picture where B bit it. Find the fox on the page where F fought for it. Discover hundreds of delightful details in these enchanting pictures each time the book is shared.
[SSHEL S Collection SE. A91]

Picture Books

Hutchins, Pat
Ten Red Apples. 2000.
Ten red apples hanging on a tree. Yippee, fiddle-dee-fee! But they are not there for long. Horse, cow, donkey, pig, hen, and the other farm animals each eat one. “Save one for me,” calls the farmer. But what about the farmer’s wife? Count on Pat Hutchins to solve the problem happily. And count the red apples before they are all gone!
[SSHEL S Collection Q. SE. H97te]

Rockwell, Anne
Apples and Pumpkins. 2011
In Apples and Pumpkins, a little girl spends a glorious fall day picking apples and searching for the perfect pumpkin.
[SSHEL S Collection SE. R593ap]

Hopkinson, Deborah
Apples to Oregon. 2004.
When Papa decides to pull up roots and move from Iowa to Oregon, he can’t bear to leave his precious apple trees behind. Or his peaches, plums, grapes, cherries, and pears. Oh, and he takes his family along too. But the trail is cruel — first there’s a river to cross that’s wider than Texas…and then there are hailstones as big as plums…and there’s even a drought, sure to crisp the cherries. Those poor pippins! Luckily Delicious (the non-edible apple of Daddy’s eye) is strong — as young ‘uns raised on apples are — and won’t let anything stop her father’s darling saps from tasting the sweet Oregon soil.
[SSHEL S Collection Q. SE. H777a]

Glass, Andrew
Folks Call Me Johnny Appleseed. 1995.
There are many tall tales about Johnny Appleseed. Most tell of his courage, generosity, and potent green thumb. Many people don’t know that the real Johnny Appleseed, John Chapman, was a tale-spinner himself. One story John loved telling was about the time his half-brother, Nathaniel, came to live with him in the rough wilderness of northwestern Pennsylvania. Nathaniel did not expect to find John dressed in a burlap sack with a mush pot on his head, living in a hollow sycamore tree. John had to bail Nathaniel out of trouble more than once. This homespun, comical story brings out the compassion, humor, and independent spirit of this quintessentially American hero.
[SSHEL S Collection Q.SE. G463F]

Wellington, Monica
Ana Cultiva Manzanas = Apple Farmer Annie. 2004.
A delicious treat about America’s favorite fruit is now available in a Spanish bilingual format. Ana grows and sells apples, and she makes cider and applesauce and muffins. A glossary helps kids learn the names of Ana’s delicious ingredients in both languages. With tie-ins to math and science curricula and units on autumn, this book will be especially welcomed by teachers. Truly the pick of the crop!
[SSHEL S Collection SE. W46a]

Intermediate and Young Adult Fiction

O’Connor, Jane
Fancy Nancy Apples Galore! 2013.
Fancy Nancy is thrilled when Ms. Glass announces a class field trip: apple picking! Nancy is determined to find a perfect Gala apple for her dad — it’s his favorite kind, and even the name sounds fancy! But what if that perfect apple is just out of reach? In the fancy footsteps of all of the Fancy Nancy I Can Reads, Fancy Nancy: Apples Galore! will delight beginning readers. With easy-to-read text and vibrant illustrations, fancy fans will clamor for more.
[SSHEL S Collection SE. Oc55a]

Archer, Lily
The Poison Apples. 2007.
At an elite Massachusetts boarding school, three fifteen-year-old girls of very different backgrounds discover a common bond and form a club to plot revenge against their evil stepmothers.
[SSHEL S Collection S.Ar23p]

MacBride, Roger Lea
In the Land of the Big Red Apple. 1995.
A year after moving to their farm in the Ozarks, Laura and Almanzo Wilder and their young daughter, Rose, have settled into their new home with a successful vegetable harvest and the beginnings of an apple orchard.
[SSHEL S Collection S. M1221I]

Lakin, Patricia
Max & Mo Go Apple Picking. 2007.
Max and Mo are tired of eating corn. Luckily the big ones — the kids — just went apple picking. Everyone knows you can make applesauce with apples, but is there anything else you can make with them?
[SSHEL S Collection SE. L149mm]

Prepared by:
Kim Looby
Graduate Student
Graduate School of Library and Information Science
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign