The Topic:
Pumpkins

Easier - A pumpkin is a large round orange fruit. Pumpkins grow on a vine along the ground. The thick inside pulp can be eaten and is often used for making pies. People in the United States also carve and decorate pumpkins into jack-o'-lanterns to celebrate Halloween.
 
Harder - The pumpkin plant is a vegetable that yields round or oval fruits, also called pumpkins. The pumpkin plant is a green bushy vine that has large, prickly leaves, and produces short-lived blossoms. These yellow male and female flowers open for one day. More pumpkin blossoms are male than female. Male blossoms have pollen that is transferred to the female flowers by bees. Only pollinated female blossoms develop into pumpkins. Therefore, few of the pumpkin flowers actually produce a pumpkin.
 
Pumpkins are related to squash. Most pumpkin fruits are orange, but some are white, yellow, or other colors. They have a hard outer shell that is lined inside with a thicker layer of coarse pulp. Inside that, the pumpkin's central cavity holds seeds within its stringy mass. The mature pumpkin fruit usually weighs 15 to 30 pounds (6.8 to 14 kilograms), but some giants may weigh over 800 pounds (363 kilograms). The eatable pulp of a pumpkin is rich in vitamin A and potassium. People cook pumpkins in various ways, especially as pumpkin pie. Pumpkin seeds, a source of protein and iron, are a popular snack when roasted. Some farmers raise pumpkins for livestock feed.
 
Pumpkins (Grades K-3) at Enchanted Learning
http://www.enchantedlearning.com/themes/pumpkin.shtml
Here you find lots of pumpkin activities, rhymes, a maze, and more.
 
Pumpkins and More from University of Illinois Extension
http://www.urbanext.uiuc.edu/pumpkins/
Learn history and facts about this squash, get recipes for things like pumpkin seeds, or have some pumpkin-y fun.
Related Website:
2) Pumpkin Patch from Ohio State University Extension
http://www.ag.ohio-state.edu/~vegnet/reports/pumpkins.htm
 
Pumpkin Circle Project
http://www.pumpkincircle.com/ and http://www.sadako.com/pumpkin/index.html
This website site provides information about the award-winning Pumpkin Circle video (narrated by Danny Glover with music by George Winston) as well as the Pumpkin Circle picture book. The site also has information about growing pumpkins.
 
Pumpkin Nook
http://www.pumpkinnook.com/
This site is dedicated to everything there is to say, do and know about pumpkins; how to grow them, carving pumpkins, recipes for cooking and eating, pumpkin songs and games, the history of pumpkins and more.
Related Websites:
2) Pumpkineaters http://www.pumpkineaters.com/
3) Pumpkin Patch http://www.backyardgardener.com/pumkin.html
 
After exploring lots of the pumpkin websites, complete one or more of these activities.
 
Read A Pumpkin Story. You can find some online at KidsDomain (http://www.kidsdomain.com/holiday/halloween/stories.html). Also visit your library media center to pick out a pumpkin book. After you finish reading it, write a review of it. Include a summary of the book and your opinion.
 
Complete Some Pumpkin Activities. You can find an online quiz, fun facts, word scramble and more at Learning Activities (http://www.thepumpkinfarm.com/learn.html) from Swan's Pumpkin Farm.
 
Do You Like Pumpkin Puzzles? Younger learners might want to start with the 6-piece (1) Pumpkin and Boy (http://www.jigzone.com/ms/z.php?zi=02900001882c&2=6_piece_classic) and (2) Pumpkin Patch puzzles (http://www.jigzone.com/ms/z.php?zi=589000019404&z=6_piece_classic). Then see how long it takes to put together the (3) Pumpkin Jigsaw Puzzle (http://www.primarygames.com/puzzles/jigsaw/pumpkin/PumpkinJigsaw.htm). Then move on to the (4) Pumpkin Ledge (http://hartford.about.com/library/puzzles/npumpkinledgepuzzle.htm), (5) Potted Pumpkins (http://hartford.about.com/library/puzzles/npottedpumpkinpuzzle.htm), (6) Happy Pumpkins (http://www.freejigsawpuzzles.com/beta/beta_test_happy_pumpkins.htm), (7) Pink Pumpkinheads (http://hartford.about.com/library/puzzles/npinkpumpkinheadspuzzle.htm), and (8) Thanksgiving (http://www.dltk-kids.com/crafts/thanksgiving/puzzles/2.htm). You can change the difficulty of some of these puzzles by choosing the type of shapes and increasing the number of pieces. Find a different type of pumpkin puzzle to solve at (9) Pumpkin Slider Puzzle (http://freehalloween.com/sliderpuzzle/sliderpuzzle.htm) - - its a tough one!
 
Make Some Pumpkin Food. Try the recipe at (1) Vala's Pumpkin Pie (http://www.thepumpkinfarm.com/pie.html)or pick one from the many at (2) Pumpkin Recipes (http://www.urbanext.uiuc.edu/pumpkins/recipes.html) from University of Illinois Extension's Pumpkins and More, (3) Recipes that Call for Pumpkin (http://www.pastrywiz.com/archive/category/pumpkin.htm), or (4) Pumpkin Recipes Galore! (http://www.pumpkinnook.com/cookbook.htm#recipe) from Pumpkineaters. You might even want to learn how to roast pumpkin seeds at (5) Roasted Pumpkin Seeds (http://www.kraftfoods.com/main.aspx? . . . id=54147) from Kraft and (6) Preserving Sunflower and Pumpkin Seeds and Popcorn (http://ndsuext.nodak.edu/extnews/askext/foodstor/411.htm) from North Dakota State University Extension Service.
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Carve A Pumpkin. Get some carving and decorating ideas from sites like these . . .
1) Giant Pumpkin Carvings http://gophergirl.freeservers.com/
2) Pumpkin Carving 101 http://www.pumpkin-carving.com/
3) Pumpkin Carving from Pumpkin Nook http://www.pumpkinnook.com/hween/carve.htm
4) Pumpkin Carving Party from Kraft
http://www.kraftfoods.com/Kf/ff/Halloween04/Pumpkin+Place.htm
5) Pumpkin Decorating from Halloween Kids http://www.halloweenkids.com/k_decorating.htm
6) Pumpkin Masters http://www.pumpkinmasters.com/
You can also carve a pumpkin online at Create Your Own Jack O'Lantern (http://www.allhallowseve.com/create/index.html), Carve-a-Pumpkin (http://www.primarygames.com/holidays/halloween/carving/carve.htm), and Carve Your Own Virtual Pumpkin! (http://www.thepumpkinfarm.com/jack/jackboard.html) from Swan Pumpkin Farm, Inc.
 
Complete A Pumpkin WebQuest. Adapt or follow the instructions that you find at one of the following webQuest sites . . .
1) Great Pumpkin Detectives (Grade K-1) by L. Palmieri and B. Demetriow
http://www2.lhric.org/kat/PMPKS.HTM
2) Pumpkin Web Quest
http://www.css.edu/users/ggaetz/web/Pumpkin.html
3) Pumpkin Patch (Grade K) by J. Johnson
http://www.fd.appstate.edu/webquests/messner_f01/pumpkin/punpkin.htm
4) Pumpkin Patch (Grade 2) by M.B. Spell
http://www.sampson.k12.nc.us/Countypage/Technology/Web%20Quest . . .
6) Pumpkin Patch Webquest http://www.gmrsd.com/Liberty/tech/pumpkinpatch.html
8) Pumpkin Webquest (Grade 1)
http://www.mid-prairie.k12.ia.us/wt/classroomnews/pumpkinwebquest.html
 
Try Growing A Giant Pumpkin. Find some startup help at Starting the Giant Pumpkin Seedling (http://www.backyardgardener.com/wcgp/tips/seedstarts.html) by R. Waterman and other sites at World Class Giant Pumpkin (http://www.backyardgardener.com/wcgp/index.html) from Backyard Gardener.
 
How Do You Carve A Pumpkin? There's definitely more than one answer to that question, but what is the right way to carve a pumpkin? Write out step-by-step instructions for the task. What types of safety considerations should be taken? Include them in your procedure.
 
Compare And Contrast Apples & Pumpkins. Analyze pumpkins and apples to identify how they are alike and different. Use a Venn diagram to show your findings. Learn about this technique at Venn Diagram Basic (http://www.graphic.org/venbas.html). Place the things that are different in the outside circle sections, and the ways they are alike in the shared inner section. Find lots of information about apples at a companion eduScapes 42eXplore project: Apples (http://42explore/apples.htm).
 
Write Some Pumpkin Poetry. Get some startup help and find lots of examples and help from Mrs. Silverman's Pumpkin Patch (http://kids-learn.org/pumpkins/index.htm).
 
Website By Kids For Kids
Some Halloween Pumpkins
http://www.dl.ket.org/latin1/special/student/projects/pumpkins.htm
Here's a gallary of pumpkins decorated by students of Greek mythology.
 
More Pumpkin Sites
Giant Pumpkins
http://www.giantpumpkins.com/Index.htm
This is a place to find out new information about growing and having fun with giant pumpkins.
Related Websites:
2) World Class Giant Pumpkin from Backyard Gardener http://www.backyardgardener.com/wcgp/index.html
 
Pumpkin Clip Art at The Pumpkin Patch
http://www.eskimo.com/~mcalpin/pump.html
Here you find lots of free pumpkin clip art that you can use, plus links to other clip art sites.
 
Pumpkin Patch by S.A Silverman
http://kids-learn.org/pumpkins/index.htm
Here you find lots of pumpkin poetry written by stundents plus facts and links for pumpkins.
 
Websites For Teachers
Addie's Pumpkin Potpourri by A. Gaines
http://www.geocities.com/Athens/Aegean/2221/pumpkin.html
Here is a collection of pumpkin-themed activities to keep little hands learning.
Similar Website:
2) Pumpkin Circle http://www.sadako.com/pumpkin/activities.html
 
Halloween Creative Writing Project (Grades 2-6) by J. Offt from A to Z Teacher Stuff
http://atozteacherstuff.com/lessons/creative_writing_Halloween.shtml
The lesson focus is on creativity as students write from the pumpkin's point of view to convince the teacher not to pick it to be carved into a jack-o'-lantern!
Other Related Lessons from A to Z Teacher Stuff:
2) Pass The Pumpkin (Preschool) by P. Diekhoff http://atozteacherstuff.com/lessons/PassthePumpkin.shtml
3) Pumpkin Circuit (Grade 2) by L. Slaughter http://atozteacherstuff.com//lessons/PumpkinCircuit.shtmll
4) Pumpkin Investigation (Grades K-2) by A. Post
http://atozteacherstuff.com/lessons/PumpkinBook.shtml
5) Pumpkin Patch (Grade 1) by S. Mitchell http://atozteacherstuff.com/lessons/PumpkinPatch.shtml
6) Pumpkin, Pumpkin Yummy Treats (Preschool-Grade K) by A. Koch
http://atozteacherstuff.com/lessons/PumpkinTreat.shtml
 
Harvest / Pumpkin Poems and Songs from Teachers Net Lesson Exchange
http://teachers.net/lessons/posts/202.html
Here is a collection of poetry and songs, mainly about pumpkins.
Another Related Site from Teachers Net Lesson Exchange:
2) Pumpkin Investigations http://teachers.net/lessons/posts/660.html
 
Pumpkin Pumpkin by Jeanne Titherington
http://www.ri.net/schools/Central_Falls/ch/heazak/pumpkin.html
This book is the story of a boy, named Jamie, who plants some pumpkin seeds. As the pages turn so does time and a wonderful sequence of the growth of a pumpkin.
 
Pumpkin Project (Grades K-6) by By D. Brady from Greentree Naturals
http://www.greentreenaturals.com/pumpkin_project.htm
This site describes a pumpkin growing project.
 
Museums in the Classroom Pumpkin Project
http://www.chias.org/www/edu/mitc/wkshp/pumpkin/pumpkin.html
The lesson is all about those lovely, roundish, orange fruits--pumpkins. Included in this project are hands-on activities, links to other web sites on pumpkins, extension ideas, and a discussion of the standards met by this project.
 
101 Things to Do with a Pumpkin
http://www.youthonline.ca/halloween/101pumpkin.shtml
Harvest a crop of fun-filled learning with this passel of pumpkin ideas and activities for math, writing, science, art, and fun using the ever-popular pumpkin!
Related Lesson / Unit Plans:
2) Learning About Pumpkins http://teachingheart.net/apumpkinunit.html
3) Ms. Pieczko's Pumpkin Patch http://www.kinderhive.net/P.html
4) Pumpkin Unit from Kindergarten Kapers http://members.tripod.com/~cbauder/newpage21.htm
5) Pumpkin Unit http://www.teachingheart.net/apumpkinunit.html
6) Pumpkin Unit http://www.busyteacherscafe.com/units/pumpkins.htm
 
Pumpkin Observations by L. Cody and L. Roccotagliata (Grades 2-3) from the Educator's Reference Desk
http://www.eduref.org/cgi-bin/printlessons.cgi/Virtual/Lessons/Science/Agriculture/AGR0008.html
Students will learn that all pumpkins are different. They vary in size, weight, and the number of seeds found inside. Students will practice several scientific processes, including observing, predicting, and recording observations as a pumpkin is examined.
Related Websites:
2) Pumpkin Exploration from Southwest Educational Development Laboratory
http://www.sedl.org/scimath/compass/v01n02/pumpkin.html
3) Pumpkin Life Cycle (Grade 1) by D. Heinemann
http://dnr.state.il.us/entice/plants/pumpkin%20life%20cycle_Kto2.htm
4) Pumpkin Science http://www.monroe2boces.org/programs.cfm?subpage=458&searchfor=pumpkin%20science
5) Pumpkin Seed Comparison (Grades 5-6) by A. Maratea-Crowder from AskERIC
http://www.eduref.org/cgi-bin/printlessons.cgi/Virtual/Lessons/Science/Botany/BOT0083.html
 
Pumpkin Pie for All! (Grades 2-7) by D. Lehar
http://score.kings.k12.ca.us/lessons/pumpkin.htm
Let's make pumpkin pie for the whole class! Imagine making enough pie so that everyone could have a piece. How about enough pie to take one home. The only problem is that the recipe you have makes 1 pie at a time which only has 8 pieces.
Related Activity Ideas:
2) Estimating With Pumpkin Seeds by M. Stout
http://www.lessonplanspage.com/MathEstimationPumpkin.htm
3) Pumpkin Estimation http://www.mtlebanon.k12.pa.us/element/elemmath/pumpkin.htm
 
Pump Up the Curriculum With Pumpkins! from Education World
http://www.education-world.com/a_lesson/lesson028.shtml
This lesson planning article provides lots of ideas for pumping up the curriculum with pumpkins! Jump into pumpkin facts and pumpkin lore. Try pumpkin science, pumpkin math, pumpkin writing.
Related Website:
2) Great Pumpkins from RiverDeep http://www.riverdeep.net/current/2001/10/102201t_pumpkins.jhtml
 
Storyboard of "The Biggest Pumpkin Ever" by I. Psaras (Grades 2-3) from the Educator's Reference Desk
http://www.eduref.org/cgi-bin/printlessons.cgi/Virtual/Lessons/Language_Arts/Story_Telling/STT0003.html
This lesson begins with After reading "The Biggest Pumpkin Ever" by Steven Kroll aloud.
 
pumpkin
fruit
squash
Halloween
vine
jack-o'-lantern
berry
pumpkin seed
puree
gourd
pumpkin patch
rind
farming
melon
pumpkin pie
vitamins & minerals
gherkin
gardening
western hemisphere
spice
blossom
germination
water
pumpkin bread
native American
sprout
apples
leaf
Smashing Pumpkins
drip irrigation
stem
ghosts, ghouls & goblins
rot
soil
angiosperm
corn
pumpkin carving
flower
root
compost
Cucurbita
Cucurbitaceae
 
  
 
Created by Annette Lamb and Larry Johnson, 10/02. Updated by King Family, 9/04.