Four Good Pumpkin Activities

While Halloween may over, Pumpkin season is not!   We continued to celebrate the fall harvest with 4 good math and art pumpkin activities.  I'll explain how I set it all up a the end.

 1. Gourd still life.  Create a wonderful arrangement of various pumpkins and gourds.  Add colored pencils and paper and let the sketching begin!
2.  Fall-time balance scales.  Put out a variety of gourds, mini pumpkins, Indian corn and acorns to allow the kids to explore with the balance scales.  I had a big bowl of acorns and a variety of measuring cups so that they could see if all scoops weighed the same.  The results were surprising!
3.  How big is the pumpkin?!  Estimate the circumference of the pumpkin using string.  The trick - you can't touch the pumpkin until after you cut the string.  After it's cut, see if your estimation was on target by wrapping around the pumpkin.  A little help may be needed to hold the string still.
Graphing the results (too short, just right, and too long) is the best part.  Our class ended up with mostly too shorts.
4. Pumpkin faces.  We used the shape stencils that go with our math program to decorate these pre-cut pumpkins.   After using the stencils, they colored in the faces.

To start off the pumpkin extravaganza, we read Pumpkin Jack - a favorite of mine.   We did all four activities at the same time - 3 minutes for each table, and rotated around the room.  While it was a whirlwind of activity, it was just enough time for everyone to enjoy each activity.  Also, the kids had to really stop and think when they got to the next table - their minds had to switch gears.  At the end, we shared our findings and the wonderful sketches they had made.  The whole thing took about 30 minutes.  Of course, you could easily do any one of the activities individually and extend the time frame.

Do you have a good pumpkin activity to share?

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