Pumpkin Activities for Kids: Making The Most of Pumpkin-Spice Latte Season in the Classroom

Pumpkin Activities for Kids: Making The Most of Pumpkin-Spice Latte Season in the Classroom

Posted by Sara Naff on Sep 28th 2023

Pumpkin season offers more than just the perennial Dunkin’ versus Starbucks debate about which makes a better PSL. One of early fall’s favorite fruits (along with the apple) can be used for fun classroom activities from pre-school to third grade on topics that range from art to math to geography and more.

Pumpkin-themed art project for kids

The leaves are turning, the air has that crisp chill, and it's officially pumpkin-spice latte season!

Although some of us are busy indulging in our favorite autumnal beverages, let's not forget that pumpkins offer more than just a tasty treat. They provide a multitude of opportunities for interactive, hands-on learning across different age levels.

So, put aside your PSLs (don’t worry -- it’s just for a moment!) and dive into these age-appropriate pumpkin-related activities for the curious minds in your classroom.

Click the links throughout for some of our favorite resources, including free printable templates and more low- or no-cost teaching tools.

Pre-School Activities

Pumpkin Sensory Bin

Fill a bin with pumpkin seeds, small gourds, and other fall items. Allow the children to explore the textures, sizes, and shapes. This tactile activity aids in sensory exploration and fine motor development.

Pumpkin Faces

Give children a cut-out of a pumpkin and various craft items like buttons, yarn, googly eyes, and felt pieces. Let them create their own pumpkin faces, helping them identify different facial features and expressions.

Colorful Pumpkin Patch

Teach children about colors using pumpkins. Paint small pumpkins in various colors and let children identify and group them.

Kindergarten Activities

Pumpkin Seed Counting

Use pumpkin seeds as counting aids. Create number cards and have the children place the corresponding number of seeds next to each card. This promotes number recognition and basic arithmetic skills.

What's Inside a Pumpkin Exploration

Cut open a pumpkin and let the children see and feel its contents. Discuss the various parts, like the skin, pulp, and seeds.

Pumpkin Story Time

Read stories about pumpkins and discuss the life cycle, or perhaps dive into tales where pumpkins play a central role.

First Grade Activities

The Life of a Pumpkin

Teach about the stages of a pumpkin's growth. Create a visual chart or storyboard and let children draw or paste pictures representing each stage.

Pumpkin Measurements

Bring in various sizes of pumpkins and have the children estimate and then measure their circumference, height, and weight. Have them assign names and even roles to this “family” of pumpkins.

Pumpkin Seed Art

Use pumpkin seeds as art materials. Children can glue them onto paper in patterns or shapes, promoting creativity and fine motor skills.

Second Grade Activities

Pumpkin Science

Discuss what conditions pumpkins need to grow. Maybe even start a mini pumpkin garden in the classroom (or a windowsill)!

Pumpkin-themed Math Problems

Create math story problems related to pumpkins, such as buying and selling them, or even fun challenges like "If one pumpkin pie requires 200 seeds, how many seeds are needed for five pies?"

Pumpkin Geography

Research where pumpkins grow around the world. Map them out and discuss different pumpkin varieties.

Third Grade Activities

Pumpkin Genetics

Dive into a simple genetics lesson by discussing how pumpkins are different: why some are large, some are small, and why they come in different colors.

Detailed Pumpkin Art

Let children sketch detailed drawings of pumpkins, focusing on shading, texture, and depth.

Pumpkin Journals

As a class or individually, encourage children to keep a journal observing the life cycle of a pumpkin. They can document its growth, changes, and the eventual transition as it matures. This not only teaches them about the pumpkin's life but also instills observational and note-taking skills.

As I said, pumpkins aren't just for lattes (but I could seriously use another cup of joe right now!). They offer an array of hands-on, fun, and educational experiences across different age groups. Embrace the pumpkin-spice season and introduce these activities in your classroom for a memorable, pumpkin-filled learning journey. Happy teaching!

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Sara Naff headshot

Sara Naff is an early childhood education professional who has taught in the preschool classroom as well as adult learner environments. She is Director of Operations at AIR Childcare Training Solutions.