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Posts Tagged With: pumpkins

Preschoolers and Pumpkins

I know October is almost over, but I had to share this pumpkin unit I did with the preschoolers at our homeschool cooperative yesterday.¬† Actually I plan to share all of the lessons I did with them, but this one is time-sensitive. ūüėČ

We’ve been¬†learning Nursery Rhyme, reading them over and over each week, but focusing on one in particular¬†every Friday for the three hours I have them.¬† This week we did Peter, Peter, Pumpkin Eater of course!

Pumpkin puzzles are a favorite both in my house and here on the blog.  I tried making them several ways, but these horizontal rings are your best bet for holding together.

A nursery rhyme pumpkin theme!

Since everybody (who doesn’t have to clean it up)¬†loves glue, the pumpkin mosaics were popular.¬† I could have cut pumpkin shapes out of cardstock or whatever, but I’m a believer in process over product when it comes to this sort of thing.¬† Time is money.¬† Less is more.¬† Whatever.¬† The kids loved this station best and that’s what I care about!

A nursery rhyme pumpkin theme!

We also used unifix cubes to measure pumpkins.¬† These kiddos range in age from almost three to five years old, so for some of the older ones I encouraged them to measure the pumpkin, then the stem, and add them together.¬† I also allowed free play with the cubes and we ended up with pens for¬†some My Little Ponies.¬† Just think what they’re learning about area and diameter. ūüėČ

A nursery rhyme pumpkin theme!

For art I cut these great little pumpkin shapes on my Cricut and left them at home.¬† So I quickly cut out some hand-drawn pumpkins and the kids ignored them almost entirely since the paint was such fun.¬† After all, it isn’t everyday someone lets you paint with straws!

A nursery rhyme pumpkin theme!

I helped them make a small mound of paint with regular water colors and then blow the paint across the page to make vines.  This little artist had the coolest vines which he choose to cover up with the only one of my hand-cut pumpkins to be used.  This is both the joy and the irony of working with children.  I thought about making my own so I could show you how cool this project can be, but if you do this with preschoolers, this is what theirs will look like, so why lie?  And unless you can figure out how to isolate the green in the water color pack they will also use all the colors.  Just being honest.

We also read the Peter, Peter Pumpkin Eater poem from two different books and (who knows why) these kids were amazed at how different the artists’ renderings were.¬† We had an in-depth conversation about actually living in a pumpkin and if it could have a window box with flowers.

If you need more great ideas, check out the unit I did with my son for kindergarten last year.

Pumpkin thematic unit for preschool, kindergarten, and 1st grade. {DaddysTractor.com}

And leave me a comment if you’ve got some great pumpkin activity up your sleeve.¬† I’ll need it for next year!

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Categories: Homeschool, Thematic Unit | Tags: , , , , | 3 Comments

Pumpkin Theme Ideas for Pre-school and Kindergarten

Pumpkin puzzle for pumpkin theme ideas

You may have read about the visitors to our farm a few weeks ago.  You may not have the opportunity to ride on a combine during harvest, but almost anyone can visit and farm this time of year!  Pumpkin patches abound with great opportunities for everyone to see bits and pieces of farm life.  And since we just did a homeschool unit about fall for my preschooler and kindergartener, here are some pumpkin theme ideas for you to useРand hopefully you can visit a pumpkin patch as well!

Of course, cutting open a pumpkin and playing with the seeds are a must.  But instead of carving a face, try these math and science ideas instead.

Clean the seeds, layer them on a baking sheet, sprinkle lightly with salt, and roast at 325 degrees for 20-25 minutes.  Eat and enjoy!

Pumpkin seeds, idea for pumpkin theme unit

OR put the seeds in a plastic tub and let the kiddos squeeze and¬†squish the squash ūüėČ

Make a pumpkin puzzle!¬† We tried a few different designs and the best puzzles were pumpkins cut in¬†horizontal “slices.”¬† For older kids talk about how puzzle pieces lock together and have them help design the puzzle.¬† For little ones just cut simple waves around the pumpkin to be used like stacking rings.

Pumpkin puzzle, pumpkin theme ideas

Design a pumpkin patch of your own.  We made fall leaves with my cricut, added a variety of pretty pumpkins, painted pumpkin leaves and vines, added a plastic rake from our summer sand toys, and talked about the pumpkin life cycle.

Pumpkin patch, pumpkin theme ideas

And speaking of pumpkin life cycles, we designed our own pumpkin life cycle chart with a paper plate, a seed, and tissue paper flowers.

Throw bean bags into a pumpkin.

Make a pumpkin smoothie.

And then when you are done with the pumpkins, place pieces in a plastic tub (you’ll want a lid for this one!) and watch the pumpkin decompose.¬† We journaled about our observations in our science journal.

Observe pumpkin decay, pumpkin theme idea

Categories: Homeschool, Thematic Unit | Tags: , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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