It is officially Fall, and that means it is time for pumpkins! While the stores are filled with pumpkin flavored everything, homeschool moms are thinking about ways to bring a little bit of fun into school. Here are 15 different educational ways to use those pumpkins besides just carving them.
Science Pumpkin Activities
1. Life cycle of a pumpkin. Mama's Learning Corner has a great set of printables to help your child learn about the pumpkin life cycle and pumpkin vocabulary.
2. Varieties of pumpkins. You can even have your child make a book or write a report about a particular variety.
3. Floating and Sinking Pumpkins. Will a pumpkin float or sink in the bath tub? Does the size of the pumpkin matter? This is a fun activity that can be as simple or complex as you want. For older kids they can make a hypothesis and record their results. Younger kids may like just trying different items.
4. 5 Senses with pumpkins. Have them describe what the pumpkin looks like, smells like, and feels like. Softly hit the pumpkin and have them describe how the pumpkin sounds. (You may or may not want to taste the raw pumpkin.)
Here are more pumpkin science activities.
Math Pumpkin Activities
5. Measurement. How many inches around is their pumpkin? How tall is it? Learn about circles, diameters, and radius.
6. Counting and Graphing. Have them count the ribs on their pumpkin. Then they can graph the results. If you have more than one child have them each count the seeds in their pumpkin and make a graph together.
7. Shapes. What shape does a pumpkin most resemble? You can take it a step further and learn about the difference between 2d and 3d shapes.
8. Weight and estimation. Have your child estimate how much their pumpkin weighs and then weigh it. Use different sized pumpkins to see how size and weight relate.
History and Geography Pumpkin Activities
9. Geography. Learn which states grow the most pumpkins, what do their climates have in common? Are there any states or countries where pumpkins do not grow?
10. History. They didn't always look the way they look today. Research pumpkin history for the plant and it's uses.
Art Pumpkin Activities
11. Paint Pumpkins. Give your child only primary colors and have them paint pictures of pumpkins. Teach them how to mix colors and talk about secondary colors. Or paint your pumpkin with faces and/or designs. You can add glitter or stickers as well. You can also cut cookie cutter shapes out of the shell of the pumpkin and make them stamps for stamp painting.
12. Draw a pumpkin. There are some fun tutorials out there to help your child learn how to draw a pumpkin. One tutorial I like is from Drago Art.
Language Arts Pumpkin Activities
14. Practice phonics or reading activities to go with the letters found in Pumpkin. For younger kids have them find pictures for each letter in the word pumpkin. Older students could write an acrostic poem about pumpkins.
15. Write stories about a pumpkin. They could write about the journey from the farm to the store from the pumpkin's point of view. Or they could write about a pumpkin that came to life. You can give them a prompt or let them write whatever they want.
There are many, many ways to use your pumpkins in an educational way. What other ideas do you have?