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Making Apple Cider at Hawthorne

Making Apple Cider at Hawthorne


For nearly 20 years, Hawthorne students have had the opportunity to participate in the process of making apple cider. Thanks to a PTA grant back in 2003 which enabled Ellen Igo to purchase a traditional apple cider press which she brings out (almost) every Fall to share with the students. This year we caught up with with Melissa Soto and Gabrielle LaMake’s classes. The students first talked about pressing juice out of the apples. Several even tried to do it by hand with little luck.

Each student brought in 3-4 apples and took a turn at putting the apples into the hopper and using the flyweel to crush them.  Most students were surprised that it was a bit harder than it looked.  After being encouraged to "give it a little muscle," students were delighted to see the sweet liquid flowing into the strategically placed pitcher. 

Each class produced about 2 gallons of juice during their cidering session and while they worked they learned fun facts about apples including that there are over 2,500 varieties of the delicious fruit!

Students and teachers were not the only ones who benefited from the lesson.  No part of the apple goes wasted, as all the leftover pulp, seeds and skin are composted in the trees to be enjoyed by deer and bees.

Everyone, including special guest Kim Newman who came out of retirement to help with the project, Dr. G, Dr. Bronstein, and our SRO Officer Oliveri, enjoyed a glass of fresh cider at the end of the activity. Be sure to check out Mrs. Newman and Mrs. Igo’s special apple cidering shirts!