5 Little Pumpkins

I know Halloween is over, but to me, pumpkin season is all the way to Christmas! Bring on the pumpkin cookies, pumpkin muffins, pumpkin seeds, pumpkin soup, pumpkin pancakes and pumpkin tea- and of course all of the fun pumpkin themed learning activities! Hopefully you can find a few leftover pumpkins on sale at the store for the activities below- or still have some hanging around your house from Halloween! Don’t forget to pop over to my toddler post “It’s Pumpkin Season!” for even more fun ideas like fizzy pumpkins, pumpkin hammering and a Skittle pumpkin experiment! Happy learning everyone!

Literacy:

-“5 Little Pumpkins” poem: We added this poem to our daily calendar routine (for more ideas, check out my calendar post here!). For those of you familiar with it, I changed the verse “there are witches in the air” to “fall is in the air” since Halloween is over.

-Pumpkin seed grab and cover ABCs: I cut out a pumpkin from construction paper and wrote the alphabet on it in a random order. Then I had my little grab an ABC magnet from the baggie we keep them in, find that letter on the pumpkin, and cover it with a pumpkin seed. I got this idea from Kindergarten Connection.

-Jello bag writing: I made some orange Jello in a Ziplock baggie (about 1/4 of the recipe) and then we used it to practice writing letters- I would write the letter first on a sheet of paper, then my little would try it on his own in the Jello! We found it worked better using a capped sharpie to write with. I got this idea from Pocket of Preschool.

-Pumpkin drawing activity: I gave my little a sheet of paper, then gave him listening instructions on how to draw a pumpkin. (ie. Take out an orange marker. Draw a large circle. Draw lines from the top to the bottom of your circle. Put away the orange marker and get out a green one.) This was a fun activity for both of us, and helped build listening skills and following directions, as well as fine motor skills!

-Booklist:

Math:

-Pumpkin seed roll and cover numbers: Piggy backing on the above literacy activity, I also wrote the numbers 1-10 on the other side of the pumpkin I cut out, then had my little roll a 10 sided dice and find each number on the pumpkin, then cover it with a pumpkin seed.

-Pumpkin roll and dot activity: In this activity, your little rolls a traditional dice, counts the dots on the number they rolled, then finds and dots it on the pumpkin! I got the idea from I Can Teach My Child.

-Estimate and count pumpkin seeds: I explained to my little what it means to “estimate”- to make a thinking guess about how many of something there are. Then my little estimated how many mini pumpkin seeds we had from our science pumpkin exploration. After writing down his estimate, he counted them to see how many we actually had (163!!!).

-Pumpkin shape match: I found these cute pumpkin shapes for free on Teachers Pay Teachers– it pairs perfectly with the story “Spookly the Square Pumpkin” which is one of my boys’ favorites! I just laminated them and cut them out, then let my little sort as we reviewed the shape names.

-Shape writing practice: These writing pages came free with the above activity, and were a great way to incorporate math and literacy! You can laminate or tuck them in a page protector to use them again! My only beef was the rhombus was labeled as a diamond (I always used to tell my students- “A diamond is a rock, not a shape!”), so I fixed it before laminating!

Science:

-Pumpkin life cycle craft: I cut out each of the steps of the pumpkin life cycle from construction paper (seed, sprout, vine, flower, young pumpkin, ripe pumpkin). Then we read the story “Pumpkin Circle” (which is one of my favorites for fall- the pictures are amazing!) and afterwards I had my little glue the life cycle steps in the correct order on a sheet of construction paper.

-Pumpkin science exploration: We used this free printable worksheet from Teachers Pay Teachers as a guide to explore and dissect a white pumpkin! Before cutting it open, I also asked my little what color he thought it would be on the inside and why. We cut open and explored a mini pumpkin too!

-Pumpkin seed growing: After dissecting our pumpkins, we planted some of their seeds in baggies on the windowsill- I have a black thumb, so they probably won’t grow past the sprout stage, but it’s still fun to try!

-“I Am Thankful” pumpkin: I got this super cute idea from my friend Brianna last year- she had her family come up with things they were thankful for each week during the month of November and they wrote them on a large pumpkin! Then you can use the pumpkin as a centerpiece on your Thanksgiving table! When I saw it, I knew we had to add this tradition to our family too! What a sweet way to focus on being thankful all month long!

Art:

-Pumpkin crosscut craft: We used a paper plate, some paint, construction paper, pipe cleaners, beads and yarn to make a diagram of the inside of a pumpkin. I guess this could technically count as science too- but I’m throwing it under art since it was a craft!

Supply/shopping list:

  • pumpkin seeds
  • orange Jello
  • baking sized pumpkin (2, but 1 would probably work depending on the order you do the activities)
  • white pumpkin
  • large pumpkin (you can also use a construction paper one, but a real one is cooler)
  • orange craft foam
  • dot marker
  • paper plate
  • pipe cleaners
  • yarn

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