10/18/12

Pumpkin Unit




Books






Science

Pumpkin Investigations

We used Pumpkin Investigation pages from  Teaching Tiny Tots and Mrs Nelson's Class.  Sam loved exploring the pumpkin and recording the info.


Big or small, pumpkins float!  (even if you try to hold them under)
Measuring the pumpkin



Exploring the inside of the pumpkin



Scientific Method Practice

Sam also recorded our Sink or Float experiment in his Science Investigation Notebook.  


Observation/Question:  Do pumpkins sink or float?

Hypothesis:  Our big pumpkin will sink because it is heavy.

Experiment:  We put a big pumpkin and a small pumpkin in a bucket of water to see if it would sink or float.

Conclusion:  Both pumpkins floated.  Pumpkins float because "there's not that much stuff in them."      
        **I was so happy he figured that out without any help from me. :)



Parts of a Pumpkin:

As we looked inside our pumpkin I explained the different parts of it to the boys, then Sam did this cut and paste activity from 2 Teaching Mommies during his one on one school time.



Life of a Pumpkin

After reading our pumpkin books, both boys made their own sequencing chart (this one is Max's) and looked at a life cycle of a pumpkin diagram (link also includes parts of a pumpkin three part cards).



Math

Counting Pumpkin Seeds

After we gutted our pumpkin and cleaned and dried the seeds, we took on the task of counting them.  After we finished up our pumpkin unit I stumbled onto the book How Many Seeds in a Pumpkin? I really wish we would have had it to go along with this activity, it would have been perfect.  I'll have to remember for next year.

To count the seeds, we started out by separating them into groups of 5-- Max counted out the groups of five and Sam kept track with tally marks.  But after we counted out two hundred with MANY more to go, I went ahead and made groups of fives and tens myself while Sam made lunch.


Here's what it looked like all spread out.  The piles on the left and in the tray are all groups of five.  The two big groups in the middle are our first two hundred.  The two piles on the right are groups of ten to one hundred.  And the piles on the construction paper are groups of tens and ones that didn't add up to one hundred.  

Sam's job was to count the groups by fives or tens. We grouped piles of one hundred together as we went.  
The grand total was 741 pumpkin seeds!

It turned out to be a wonderful math lesson.  Sam used to have trouble counting by fives, but not anymore!!   We did this activity a little over a week ago and he has been breezing through skip counting by fives ever since!




Reading 

Sight Word practice

His sight words for the week were said, look, down, and little.  He worked on them individually through the week, then (after a bit of searching) I found this awesome free worksheet creator and was able to make a custom traceable sentence including all of our words.  He read the sentence beautifully, then traced the words and put a little pumpkin sticker at the bottom of the page.   


Fun Food



We made pumpkin chocolate chip cookies one morning and ate them while reading The Runaway Pumpkin.





In the book, a big pumpkin is on the loose, rolling through a farm. As it goes by, it reminds each family member of their favorite pumpkin food.  I decided we would make pumpkin chocolate chip cookies to go along with the story since pumpkin chocolate chip anything are my favorite pumpkin treats.    The boys don't particularly have a favorite pumpkin food.  They wanted to make pumpkin pie, but in the interest of time I talked them into these super easy cookies instead. :)  

** To make:  Just mix together a 15 oz. can of pumpkin with a box of cake mix (I used yellow) and a bag of chocolate chips.  Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.



Craft Time

Pumpkin Painting



*    *    *    *    *    *    *    *


~Max is 4 years old~

I've decided to change things up a bit and do a little more to highlight what Max does during his school time.  He does a lot with his brother, but there are those things Max and I do one on one that I don't want to neglect to write about.  

**All the printables Max used are from Confessions of a Homeschooler unless otherwise noted.

 Pink Play-Doh "P"
Max can look at a letter and say it's sound, but he is still working on identifying the beginning letter sound in a word (unless I really stress it when I say it).  So this week we did a "P" scavenger hunt around the house, filling our wagon with objects that begin with P (Play-doh, paint, a pillow, a pumpkin, and a picture were the things that ended up in the wagon).  When we did our Pink Play-Doh "P" we made the /p/ sound and said the names of the objects from our scavenger hunt.


Letter sound BINGO
 This was an activity included in Sam's All About Reading level 1 curriculum.  I thought it fit where Max is in reading more than it did Sam, so Max did it instead.  We didn't really play BINGO, I just called out letter sounds and he used pumpkin seeds as markers until the card was full. :)


Pumpkin Seed Tray 
 The boys came up with this all on their own.  A tray full of 741 pumpkin seeds was obviously begging for some attention, so they spread the seeds out and used their fingers to make letters in them-- kind of like a salt tray.  I thought it was so clever I included it with Max's work the next day.


P is for pumpkin coloring page
 I printed off this coloring page for all three of the kids to do.  Sam read and traced the words on his, Max traced the letter P's and we talked about P being the first letter in the word pumpkin, and Corinne (age 2) just colored hers and talked about the color orange.

Pumpkin Pattern Strips
 Patterning was a tricky concept for Max for a while, but a couple weeks ago it just clicked.  I'm not sure what changed, but for a while he was just guessing at these (and complaining when I asked him to do them) but then after taking a little break, he just got it!  Now he's more than happy to do them!  The pattern strips in the picture are from 2 Teaching Mommies.


Pumpkin Lacing Card


Pumpkin Spelling Mat


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13 comments :

  1. What a lovely pumpkin unit!! We may just have to do one, as well. Thank you for sharing!!

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  2. You did a great job organizing this pumpkin unit! It looks like everyone had fun! That is a TON of pumpkin seeds!

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  3. Is there any way for you to link to the printables you used?

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    1. I used printables from a few different places-- mostly from 2 Teaching Mommies and Confessions of a Homeschooler. I think the links may have been a bit hard to see, so I went back in and changed all them all to "bold." Hope that helps make them easier to find. Let me know if there's anything specific you're looking for that I didn't link, I'd be happy to help! :)

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  4. Love your activities for your pumpkin unit. We love The Runaway Pumpkin!

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  5. I am so glad I saw this; we're doing pumpkins next week! I loveeee the pumpkin investigation sheets.

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  6. This is the best pumpkin unit I've seen on the web so far! I really like the exploration of the scientific method, and also the pumpkin seed counting. Thanks for sharing this

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  7. Wow! What a great unit! I love how you used big science words like hypothesis with the kids. Thank you for sharing this on Read.Explore.Learn. I am sharing this post on the Read.Explore.Learn Facebook page today.

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  8. I love the pumpkin theme. I'm featuring you this week on the Sunday Showcase!

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  9. You know, I taught this EXACT same unit back when I was teaching and it was always a hit. I'm laughing because I even used some of the same books. Great minds think alike!

    Thanks for linking up to Science Sunday!

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  10. Excellent unit, and wonderfully portrayed! :D

    I found you through Pinterest -- just wanted to let you know your pins bring you new admirers, even a year after the post. :O>

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  11. I'm so excited I found this! I have been looking for fun fall/Halloween related homeschool ideas that didn't involve witches, ghosts, mummies, etc. LOVE these ideas! Thank you!

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  12. After the pumpkin patch this weekend, I will try to attempt to use your ideas for our pumpkin. Thank you. I'm so happy there are people like you who create cool stuff like this, because I just can't come up with it. Please keep posting your ideas.

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