Here is a fall literacy center activity to get your students exploring non-fiction books with a free non-fiction apples and pumpkins literacy center activity.
Designed for kindergarten literacy centers so you can have center materials to last all year long.
What is the Non-fiction Literacy Center?
The non-fiction literacy center is all about exploring non-fiction with meaning. Students will become familiar with features of non-fiction through lots of exposure and be able to explore topics they find fascinating or that connect with what you’re learning about in class.
Connecting with non-fiction books is done with a few simple activities and lots of books.
Read here: How to make the non-fiction center a success.
I’ve created a free download to share this center’s activities with you. It includes organization labels, sorting workmats and ‘pretend laptop’ printables to go with each non-fiction theme and topic.
Each theme or topic is one option for my students to pick from when they visit the non-fiction center. Normally I have a few topics available at a time and can rotate them out throughout the year.
This apples and pumpkins non-fiction book basket is just one example of the topics I made available to my students at this non-fiction literacy center.
I created this fall non-fiction book basket because I had a lot of books and magazines over the years after teaching about both apples and pumpkins. We also took lots of field trips to the apple orchard and pumpkin patches over the years.
I was wasn’t really using my read aloud books in my classroom library but I wanted to extend my theme after it was done.
So I came up with a plan to incorporate them, get them into the hands of my five and six-year-olds and make non-fiction books easily accessible.
How to Make the Literacy Center Activity
Let me break down how to make this non-fiction fall book activity bucket for you.
The materials needed to make this literacy center activity are:
- Apples + pumpkins non-fiction free download (below)
- Non-fiction books about the apples, pumpkins and their life cycles (see my suggestions below)
- Shoe bin or plastic tote/bucket/basket
1. Collect all of the materials you have on hand that relate to all things apples and pumpkins. Be sure to check the depths of your cupboards, closets (or ransack the bottom of your own kids’ toybox – ha!)
2. Pick a good number of non-fiction books from the ones you’ve collected. Go for a number that isn’t overwhelming to clean up but still offers variety on the topic.
Pick books with concepts appropriate for kindergarten age, good vocabulary, some books with photographs and some with illustrations, or some that feature different non-fiction characteristics like labels, diagrams, etc.
Don’t worry about the reading level. Having only kindergarten-level reading material is definitely not the goal here.
The goal is to connect students with non-fiction books – they already have an innate love for non-fiction. If you can offer a variety of reading levels, that’s a bonus.
Apples + Pumpkins non-fiction books for Kindergarten
Looking for some book ideas? Here are some affiliate books on Amazon to help get you thinking about what you might already have on hand in your classroom or titles to keep your eyes out for at your local thrift store and garage sales.
- Apples by Gail Gibbons
- How Do Apples Grow?
- Apple (Life Cycle of A)
- Apples by Ken Robbins
- From Seed to Pumpkin
- Growing Pumpkins
3. Label your books with the mini apples and pumpkins icons.
I’ve got your back. Those are located in your free download.
4. Pick a material that students can manipulate and place onto their sorting work mat. They will be sorting objects into 3 categories: apples, pumpkins or both.
I actually used real leaves (laminated) and saved seeds and stems (dried out) from our field trips for this bucket.
You might need a container of some kind to hold all of the sorting pieces. Something like a pencil zipper pocket, a zippered cosmetics bag or something like that. Put a matching label from your free download on the container.
5. Print the sorting workmat so students can manipulate materials and connect to the topic.
6. Print and make a laptop activity to encourage students to focus on letters, sounds and vocabulary. They will find these words in any of the books you’ve included.
In this case, I’ve made three different ones. Students will be typing in names of vocabulary related to apples, pumpkins and the apple life cycle.
You can print off the little I-Spy finder that I included to help students stay on task as they look for vocabulary words in the books they read. This is a fun extension activity. They can even check off what they find if you laminate the finder to use with a dry-erase marker.
7. Optional – you can add a notebook (or the free question template I’ve made) so students can copy words they find, generate questions or bring information they’ve learned to share with the class. I think it’s silly to not invite them to write during a literacy center like this one when you can easily add a notebook for just pennies during back to school sales.
8. Add an apples+pumpkins label onto the binder, or shoe bin or bucket or plastic tote – whatever you’ve got to hold it all together.
Everything inside is pretty much labeled so it can all get returned to this bucket.
It’s a good idea to let students carry the entire bucket to where they will be working. That way they can put it all right back in the bucket when it’s clean up time!
Free Apples & Pumpkins Non-fiction Books Activity Set
Grab your free download to print the icons and activity pieces to go with your apple and pumpkin non-fiction books.
Just add your email address below so I can email you everything I have.
You can make your own non-fiction literacy center with this activity set PLUS there are 13 more activity sets included in your free download!
See the Other Non-fiction Activity Sets in Action
- Human Body
- Reptiles + Amphibians
If you like what I do here on KindergartenWorks, then be sure to subscribe today. I look forward to sharing ideas with you weekly.
This center is just one of 15 literacy center ideas for kindergarten that last for the entire year.
More Literacy Centers
- How to Create Smart Literacy Centers that Last All Year
- ABC Center – See, Stamp, Write and Explore
- Pokey Pinning Literacy Center
Get the Non-fiction literacy center activities
14 free non-fiction activity sets with organization pieces included.