Thursday, November 8, 2012

Pumpkins & Halloween!

For the past few weeks we have been learning about plants and pumpkins. I'll put a post soon about plants, but first I wanted to share with you all our fun pumpkin and Halloween-related activities.

Of course, everyone was talking about what they were going to be for Halloween weeks before it actually happened. My kids loved getting to draw what they were going to be for our class book. It turned out so cute!! I have SO many good artists this year!

                                                                   (Strawberry Short Cake)

(knight)                                                           (Merida)

(black cat)                                                     (mermaid) 

   (zombie)                                               (Statue of Liberty) 
We also did several literacy activities such as candy corn ABCs, where the kids had to match letters with pictures that had the same beginning sound as that letter. Later they did a cut and paste activity.

On Halloween, we read "Spookley the Square Pumpkin" (a great book to talk about bullying and the importance of being kind to others) and the kids filed in a listening to reading sheet (from Kinder-Craze) that they use during Daily 5. We listened to the story all together and then the kids drew a picture from the story. We had watched the movie earlier so we compared and contrasted the movie to the book.

Literally while holding the book up to show the kids as we listened to the story, I thought to myself, "Hey! I want to do a craft!" So I whipped this baby up in about 2 seconds and it turned out so cute! It's so easy. I just cut a rounded square on orange paper, 2 half ovals on white and a stem shape on green. I gave them to the kids to glue together and decorate. At the bottom, they filled in an adjective to describe Spookley.

In math we also did several Halloween-related activities. To review patterns, the kids played with my pumpkin pattern game where they had to find the next pumpkin in the pattern. Later they created their own pumpkin patterns!



They did a pumpkin addition game and a Halloween addition and subtraction game. They also did paper activities to go along with the games.

We also reviewed matching sets by gluing paper seeds in our Pumpkin Seed book. The kids had to read each page to see how many seeds each pumpkin had. On the last page they could write in their own number. 


Solving word problems is a huge priority in my school and we try to do them at least 3-4 times a week (even in kindergarten!) The kids solve the problems using their own strategies and we share out after everyone has an answer. We were learning about subtraction the week of Halloween so I had the kids work on subtraction word problems with a Halloween theme. 


Learning about plants tied in perfectly with Halloween because of Pumpkins! I usually try to carve pumpkins with my kids each year and this year I decided to do one pumpkin for the girls and one for the boys. First we did several measurement activities with the pumpkins where the kids recorded their data in a pumpkin book. We estimated how many seeds would be in the pumpkin. We measured how tall the pumpkin was with cubes. We measured how long it was around in inches using a string and ruler. Finally, we found how much it weighed using a scale.

 After that, we got started on the carving! First I cut open the top and let the kids take turn scooping out the seeds. I put the seeds in separate bowls as we were going to count the seeds and see which pumpkin had more.

Next, each group voted on what kind of face they wanted me to carve. The boys picked scary, while the girls picked cute. I did my best to create a scary and cute face and if I do say so myself, they turned out pretty good! I let two girls who were being quiet and good listeners name the pumpkin and they chose Susan. I did the same for the boys and they chose Spookley.

(Susan and Spookley)

 I then let the kids "carve" their own pumpkins through drawing! :) They illustrated a pumpkin with any kind of face they wanted. (These examples are happy, scary and silly)

I took the seeds home and baked them in the oven so we could count them. Our final count was Girls: 210 and Boys: 313!  We added this information to our pumpkin books to see if our guess was right. Finally, the kids made a front and back pumpkin cover for their book. 

Stay tuned for a post all about plants! If you are interested in any of these activities, check out my Halloween unit!

1 comment:

Miss Kindergarten said...

I love everything about this post!!!