If you love all things fall and harvest, like beautiful imperfect round pumpkins there are many wonderful ways to incorporate them into your homeschool routine. Pumpkins can be turned into math, science, and history lessons, but also so much more. For a pumpkin unit study, you really need no special supplies or expensive curriculum, just a few pumpkins and some basic items you already have around the house.
Grab a ruler, a scale, and a flexible measuring tape. Bring home several pumpkins or head to the pumpkin patch with them and work on some math skills.
- Measure the height, width, and circumference of several pumpkins. Weigh pumpkins on a scale, remove the pulp and seeds and weigh them separately.
- Have younger children place pumpkins in a line in order of largest to smallest and reverse. Cut open a pumpkin and count the seeds.
- Once your pumpkin is cut open measure the amount of seeds vs. pulp.
- Cut a small pumpkin in half, then quarters, then eighths to introduce or reinforce fractions with your child.
- Use pumpkin seeds as manipulatives for counting, skip counting, grouping, creating arrays, use a fine tip sharpie to write numbers on clean dry seeds to use to create math problems.
Label the Parts of a Pumpkin
For this hands-on activity, you just need toothpicks and a bit of cardstock. Cut cardstock in small 1”x2” squares. Write the parts of a pumpkin on each piece of cardstock- stem, seeds, pulp, skin, and ribs.
Tape each piece to a toothpick. Cut pumpkin open or in half and have them stick the label in the correct place, hands-on fun is much more memorable than a worksheet!
Cinnamon and Sugar Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
An easy pumpkin recipe is a great way to enjoy a hands-on activity for math, science, and reading skills. Recipes help children learn to follow directions, introduces them to fractions, scientific reactions, and more.
You will need:
- ¾ cup Pumpkin seeds
- 2 teaspoons butter
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon or pumpkin spice
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
- Remove the seeds from your pumpkin.
- Wash well, drain in a strainer and remove all bits of pumpkin pulp.
- Dry seeds well.
- Toss in a bowl with melted butter, sugar, and cinnamon.
- Spread in a single layer on a baking sheet.
- Bake for 25 minutes.
- Allow to cool then store in a container with a tight-fitting lid.
- A delicious treat to enjoy while learning all about pumpkins!
Quick Facts About Pumpkins:
- In Colonial America they sliced to top off the pumpkin, removed the seeds and pulp then filled it with milk, spices, and honey, They then baked it right over hot ashes to make the first pumpkin pies!
- Pumpkins are made of 90% water.
- Every single part of the pumpkin is edible, even the stem.
- Pumpkin is considered a fruit, mainly due to its seeds.
Decorating pumpkins this year but want an educational spin on it? Paint your pumpkin like a globe, label the oceans and continents. Have older children label additional details.
Pumpkin Art Project for Kids
If you want to add a little fall fun to your classroom try these DIY Pumpkin Window clings! Your kiddos can each design their own colorful pumpkin, using these special paints, and our free pumpkin template. You’ll have a unique fall decoration you can hang up for years to come!
Educational Pumpkin Books
Pumpkin is from the Greek Word ‘pepon’ which means ‘large melon’.
Use the words below as spelling and vocabulary words for your child. There are many ways they can be used such as in sentences for handwriting and grammar,
Pumpkin, Gourd, Seed, Vine, Rind, Pulp, Seedling, Gourd, Harvest, Stem, Tendril, Ribs, Sprout, Skin, Leaves.
Read the following pumpkin facts aloud and have your child locate the places on a map.
- Pumpkins are grown on every continent but Antarctica.
- Morton, Illinois considers itself the pumpkin capital of the world.
- The world record for the largest pumpkin is 2,600 pounds and was grown in Germany in 2016.
More Pumpkin Printables & Ideas:
We have a great variety of free pumpkin printables and teaching resources you can add to your unit study. These are great for adapting your lesson for younger students:
This is a great idea. Last year I bought a few pumpkins from a pumpkin patch and used it as a resource. I got my Sunday school and other classes to do some sums involving the numbers and cost of pumpkins etc for starters. I had the older kids write me a article on the humble pumpkin and also we created a pumpkin play too. We even made some tasty hot pumpkin soup and a pie. For art I got the kids to sketch a pumpkin and made rubbings of a old pumpkin. We had a pumpkin party and a fun pumpkin carving event and a pumpkin bobbing contest. We had fun. Then we played name that pumpkin game and pumpkin flavored cupcakes plus roll the pumpkin.