Looking for ways to make this fall season more festive and educational for your kids? Why not try some pumpkin themed hands-on activities? Pumpkins are not only a popular symbol of the season, but they also offer a wealth of learning opportunities for children. In this blog post, we will explore some fun, educational, and creative ways to explore pumpkins with your children, with the bonus of pumpkin themed printables to make these activities even more engaging and enjoyable. Your kids will have a blast while learning about math, science, language, and more!
Did you know that the pumpkin plant is actually a type of squash? It’s amazing how big those vines can get, and the flowers are so pretty too.
Pumpkins are native to North America. They have large leaves and vines that can stretch up to 20 feet long. There are dozens of varieties, ranging in color from yellow to green to white. Pumpkins are also packed with nutrients, including vitamin A and fiber. They can be used in a variety of dishes, from pumpkin pie to savory soups. Plus, carving pumpkins is a fun fall tradition that many people enjoy. Overall, the pumpkin plant is a versatile and interesting crop that has been enjoyed for centuries.
The pumpkin life cycle begins with a small seed planted in nutrient-rich soil. As the seed begins to sprout, it sends out delicate roots that will anchor the plant in the ground and absorb water and nutrients. Soon, the first leaves emerge from the soil, and the plant begins to grow rapidly.
As the pumpkin vine grows, it produces small yellow flowers that attract bees and other pollinators. These insects help to fertilize the flowers, which eventually grow into small green pumpkins.
Over time, the pumpkins grow larger and larger, changing color from green to orange as they ripen. Once the pumpkins are fully mature, they are ready to be harvested. Farmers carefully cut the pumpkins from the vine and bring them to market, where they are sold as decoration or used for cooking. From seed to harvest, the pumpkin life cycle is a fascinating process that showcases the beauty and wonder of nature.
Pumpkin themed hands on activities for children
Pumpkin Sorting: Provide children with pumpkins of different shapes, sizes, and colors and have them sort them based on the given criteria.
Pumpkin Tasting: Introduce children to a variety of pumpkin dishes such as pumpkin pie, roasted pumpkin seeds, or pumpkin soup. This activity helps in developing their sense of taste and encourages healthy eating habits.
This recipe is easy to make in a classroom setting as it requires minimal equipment and supervision. Children can practice measuring and mixing ingredients while learning about seasonal flavors. Plus, it’s a healthy and delicious treat that can be enjoyed by everyone!
Pumpkin Pie Dip
- 1 can of pumpkin puree
- 1 cup of plain Greek yogurt
- 1 tsp of cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp of nutmeg
- 1/4 cup of honey
- Graham crackers or apple slices for dipping
- In a large bowl, mix together the pumpkin puree, Greek yogurt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and honey.
- Once combined, divide the mixture into small serving cups or bowls.
- Serve with graham crackers or apple slices for dipping.
Pumpkin Seed Counting: Provide children with pumpkin seeds and have them count the seeds and match them with the numerals written on paper or wooden sticks.
Pumpkin Painting: Give children pumpkins to paint using dot painting, or freehand painting. This activity develops their creativity and art skills.
Pumpkin Seed Sensory Bin: Fill a bin with pumpkin seeds and hide small objects like bells, buttons, or small toys within. Have children explore the bin using their senses and search for hidden objects. This activity helps in sensory development.
- A plastic bin or tray
- Pumpkin seeds
- Small objects like bells, buttons, or small toys
- Fill the bin with pumpkin seeds. You can adjust the amount according to the size of the bin, but make sure it’s enough to cover the bottom.
- Hide small objects within the pumpkin seeds. You can use different objects to make the activity more challenging or interesting.
- Invite the children to explore the bin using their senses. Encourage them to touch, smell, and listen to the pumpkin seeds.
- Ask the children to search for the hidden objects. This will enhance their fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination.
- Once they find an object, they can take it out of the bin and show it to you.
- Keep the activity going by hiding different objects or changing the sensory bin materials.
- Clean up the pumpkin seeds and small objects once the activity is done.
- Make sure the small objects are safe for children to handle.
- Supervise children during the activity to ensure their safety.
- You can also add scoops, spoons, and cups to the sensory bin for more exploration and play.
Pumpkin Measurement: Provide children with measuring tapes and have them measure the circumference and diameter of pumpkins. This activity helps develop their mathematical skills.
Begin by introducing the concept of measurement to the children. Explain to them that they will be measuring the size of a pumpkin using measuring tapes.
Show the children how to use a measuring tape. Demonstrate how to stretch the tape from one end to another to determine the length of an object.
Have the children gather around the pumpkins. Explain that they will be measuring the circumference and diameter.
Ask the children to estimate the size of the pumpkin and record their guesses.
Have the children take turns measuring the circumference of the pumpkin by wrapping the tape around the widest part of the pumpkin. Encourage them to measure carefully and record their findings.
Next, have the children measure the diameter of the pumpkin by placing the measuring tape across the widest part of the pumpkin from side to side. Again, encourage them to measure carefully and record their findings.
Once all the children have had a chance to measure the pumpkin, have them compare their measurements to their estimates. Ask them to discuss how close their estimates were to the actual measurements.
Finally, use the pumpkin as an opportunity to talk about healthy eating habits and the nutritional benefits of pumpkins. You could also carve the pumpkins together and use them as decorations for the classroom or school.
Pumpkin Sensory Bottles: Fill transparent bottles with miniature pumpkins, pumpkin seeds, and other fall-related items. This activity helps sensory development and can be a calming tool.
- Transparent bottles with lids
- Miniature pumpkins
- Pumpkin seeds
- Fall-related items (such as leaves, acorns, pinecones, etc.)
- Clear glue or glycerin (optional)
- Clean and dry the bottles.
- Cut the miniature pumpkins to fit inside the bottles. You may need to push them in with a stick or skewer.
- Add a handful of pumpkin seeds to each bottle.
- Pick out some fall-related items and add them to the bottles. You can use different-colored leaves, small pinecones, or small acorns.
- Fill the bottles with water, leaving a little room at the top.
- (Optional) Add a few drops of clear glue or glycerin to the bottle. This will help slow down the movement of the contents and create a more calming effect. You can experiment with how much or little to add to achieve your desired effect.
- Close the lid tightly and shake the bottle to mix the contents.
Your pumpkin sensory bottle is now ready! You can play with the bottle, watch the contents swirl around, or use it as a calming tool when feeling overwhelmed.
Autumn is here, and that means it’s pumpkin season! Pumpkins are not only great for carving jack-o-lanterns and decorating your home, but they are also an interesting subject to learn about. Delve into the pumpkin’s life cycle with these fun printables and activities that will teach kids about how pumpkins grow and change over time.
Use this resource with clear true-to-life images and photographs to create hands-on science activities for your students. Children will learn stages of the pumpkin life cycle, practice sequencing skills, and work to improve their concentration and fine motor skills. This resource will come in handy when exploring the plant life cycle and setting up activities for autumn explorations.
This Pumpkin Life Cycle printable is a perfect activity to offer students in the fall. It features clear photographs of each stage of the life cycle. In addition to using the set of 3-part cards for teaching vocabulary, you may decide to hang control cards (labeled pictures) on display. Alternatively, place them on your nature table for children to explore, build the life cycle sequence and retell the stages using new vocabulary.
Here is what’s included:
- Pumpkin life cycle poster
- Pumpkin life cycle 3 part cards
- Pumpkin life cycle coloring, cutting, and pasting worksheet (color and blackline)
- Pumpkin life cycle tracing strips
- Pumpkin life cycle information cards
- Parts of a Pumpkin poster
- Parts of a Pumpkin student activity page
- Parts of a Pumpkin labels
- Parts of a Pumpkin tracing & independent writing worksheet
- Parts of a Pumpkin student booklet (independent writing)
- Parts of a Pumpkin information cards
- Types of Pumpkin 3 part cards
- Types of Pumpkins information cards
- Pumpkin characteristics color poster
- Pumpkin characteristics black line poster
- Pumpkin characteristics mat
- Pumpkin characteristics color cards
- Pumpkin characteristics tracing & coloring student booklet
- Pumpkin Characteristics student booklet
- Pumpkin information poster
- My Book of Pumpkins
- Pumpkin anatomy diagram adjective activity
Age: Preschool ages 3 – 6 years
Invite your students to make their My Book of Pumpkin Life Cycle booklet or work with the blackline worksheet included in the printable.
It is always a good idea to have seeds and real pumpkins for children to touch and smell or even plant to observe the life cycle in the classroom.
Printable Pumpkin Life Cycle Worksheets
To kick things off, print out a set of pumpkin life cycle worksheets that include all the different stages involved in the growth and development of a pumpkin. From seed to sprout, vine to flower, and fruit to pumpkin, these worksheets will help kids understand the different parts of the life cycle.
Life cycle poster – Print on cardstock and laminate. Present all stages of the pumpkin life cycle. Invite the children to retell them or tell their own story that features all the stages.
Pumpkin life cycle 3-part cards – print on cardstock and laminate if you wish to preserve colors and card quality for future use. Place picture cards in a column and invite the children to match the picture to the picture and the word to the word. Present control cards and ask the child to lay the stages of the cycle in the correct order.
Pumpkin life cycle line art – supply scissors, glue, and coloring pencils. Invite the student to color and cut cards and glue them into the correct sequence.
Pumpkin tracing/labeling and coloring worksheets – print on cardstock and laminate. Supply an erasable pen. Invite the child to trace the words and color corresponding images. Alternatively, print pages on regular printing paper and invite the child to trace or label the stages of the life cycle.
Pumpkin Life Cycle Craft
Take your pumpkin life cycle lesson to the next level with a fun craft project that demonstrates the stages of the life cycle. Have students cut out and glue together the different parts of the pumpkin life cycle, from seed to pumpkin. Add some colorful markers or paint to make the craft come to life.
After kids understand the pumpkin life cycle, it’s time to explore. Take a trip to a local pumpkin patch or farm where kids can see pumpkins in action. Have them observe the different stages of the life cycle and talk about what they see. Bring back a small pumpkin or two to dissect and learn about the different parts of the pumpkin.
Pumpkin Science Experiment
Conduct a science experiment using pumpkins to teach kids about the different properties of pumpkins. Have them measure the circumference and weight of a pumpkin and compare it to other fruits and vegetables. Cut open the pumpkin to explore what’s inside and the different uses for pumpkins, such as pumpkin pie, roasted seeds, and more.
Pumpkin Math Games
Engage kids in some fun pumpkin-themed math games by having them count the number of seeds in a pumpkin and guess how many seeds are in a pumpkin. Use the pumpkin as a weight and balance tool, and have kids predict how many pumpkins it would take to balance out different weights.
Parts of a Pumpkin – Gather books about pumpkins for children to explore. Print posters and label cards on cardstock and laminate. Cut individual label cards. Attach clear velcro to the poster without labels and label cards.
Present the poster – Name all parts and invite the students to share their thoughts on the various functions of each part and do their own research. Then read each label and invite the student to match it to the corresponding part of the pumpkin.
Pumpkin-themed activities can be a fun and educational way to engage children during the fall season. With these hands-on activities and printables, children can learn sequencing, new vocabulary, and more while also having fun. By incorporating these activities into classroom lessons or family time at home, parents and educators can help children learn and grow while enjoying the festive season.