In Oregon, there are approximately 5,000 acres of apples grown. The majority of these orchards are grown in the Hood River and Milton-Freewater areas. In 2018, the farm gate value of apples in Oregon was $55 million. In the United States, there are approximately 7,500 apple producers. These apple producers grow many different kinds of apples. Each apple variety has it own set of characteristics which make some better for baking and other best consumed as a snack. Apple trees are self-unfruitful meaning they require the pollen of a different variety to produce fruit. This causes a mixture of traits to be passed on to the fruit on the tree when planting from seed, resulting in unpredictable quality of fruit. For this reason, apple trees are grafted instead of being grown from seed.
Explore the production of apples and the process of grafting. Students will be introduced to several varieties of apples and learn that each apple was grafted specifically for its genetic traits and resulting characteristics.
Activity 1: Exploring Apple Varieties
Students will gain some background information on apple production in Oregon and the United States. Students will begin to explore apple varieties in this activity and the characteristics that make them the most desirable.
Brainstorm Apple Characteristics
Students are asked to answer the three questions listed below based on prior experience of eating apples and the characteristics they feel are most appealing in apples.
1) What qualities make a good apple?
2) What qualities make a poor apple?
3) What qualities would farmers look for in the apples they choose to grow?
Activity 2: Production of Apples
Students watch a short video describing how farmers are able to grow so many different varieties of apples while maintaining the genetics within the varieties. Students watch the video Apple: How does it grow? by True Food TV. Then, students have a set of reflection questions to answer using the How does it grow? Apples Reflection form.
Activity 3: Grafting the Red Delicious!
In this section, students will begin to prepare for the activity. Students will read through the Grafting the Red Delicious! Background Information to be introduced to parts of a tree and the procedure of grafting. Then, students will be asked to gather supplies provided in the kit or materials around their house for the upcoming LIVE Class Session or complete the project on their own and share based on the method of delivery you choose from the options above.
View complete lesson plans linked below!
Curriculum is broken up into small activities that can be done over multiple sittings allowing students to have good breaking spots in between each part.
See this lesson in Modular Delivery through our Google Classroom Example, follow the instructions below.
1. Log in to a google email account, it does not have to be associated with a school.
2. In the menu option, select Classroom.
3. Using the + in the top right hand corner, select join a class.
4. Enter the Class Code: agals5q
5. Select Classwork at the top and you should see the topic “September 2020 – Apples”
6. Underneath this section the lessons are broken out into 4 assignments.
Students complete the whole lesson through 1-hour long lesson in an in-person classroom setting.
The activities below will have the student portions in Spanish but the teacher directions in English.