Pumpkins are such a fun topic of study for the kindergarten classroom! I look forward to diving into pumpkin activities in my room every year. In my classroom, I love using lapbooks to collect all of our pumpkin activities and lessons. Come along as I walk you through exactly how pumpkin lapbook activities look in our classroom!
What Are Lapbooks?
As I mentioned, I love to use lapbooks (also called flippy flaps around here) for our pumpkin activities. If you’ve never heard of them, lapbooks are essentially a smaller version of an interactive notebook. To make a lapbook, all you need are manilla folders and information to put inside.
Basically, you’ll re-fold your folders to open on each side and fill them with small paper foldables, pictures, and writing prompts. When you’re finished, each child will have a visual record of everything you’ve learned about pumpkins! Lapbooks aren’t just for pumpkins though! I use them all year long for a variety of topics including:
So grab some manilla folders and let’s get started! All you need to do is open the folder and then fold each side in until it meets the center crease. At the beginning of the year, I help my students do this, but kindergarteners learn quickly and become independent in this before they know it! Feel free to share this image below to help your students learn how to fold their own lapbooks!
Set the Stage for Pumpkin Activities
Before you dive into your pumpkin activities, make sure to do a quick introduction. I love using books for any new topic we explore. If you’re looking for books to go with your pumpkin activities, here are a few of my favorites:
- Pumpkin Jack by Will Hubbell is one of my all-time favorites! This book explores what happens to a pumpkin that’s left outside all through the year.
- The Pumpkin Book by Gail Gibbons provides an in-depth overview of the pumpkin life cycle, facts about pumpkins, and seasonal uses.
- Seed, Sprout, Pumpkin, Pie by Jill Esbaum has a lot of great real pictures for students to see.
- How Big Could Your Pumpkin Grow by Wendell Minor is a fun read for the kindergarten classroom.
There are SO many great pumpkin books out there, these are just a few of my all-time faves! Be sure to take a peek around your local library and browse YouTube for read-alouds as well. I like to read a book or 2 each day we spend learning about pumpkins to set the stage and excite my students for our lesson!
1. Exploring Pumpkins
First off, to start our pumpkin activities I love inviting my kindergartners to explore a pumpkin with their senses.
For this activity, I like to have a few different-sized pumpkins on hand and invite them to observe what they see, hear, smell, feel and taste!
We begin this activity by touching the pumpkin and describing what we notice. Then we move on to listening carefully for any “noises” and describing visual observations of our pumpkins.
Next, we smell the pumpkins, and finally- I cut the pumpkin open and invite everyone to “have a taste”.
There usually aren’t many takers on this final step, but some of your kiddos might be brave enough! I like to bring a can of cooked pumpkin in as well and give everyone a spoonful before asking them to describe how it tastes.
We write all of our notes down in our pumpkin lapbooks and color the pictures before moving on.
2. Discuss Pumpkin Facts
For our next activity, I like to chat with the kids about pumpkin facts. For this one, I like to make a large anchor chart as a class before having the kids fill out their lapbook pieces. We think back to the books we read and brainstorm things we know about pumpkins. Some of the things my kids usually come up with include:
- pumpkins can be orange
- pumpkins can be white
- pumpkins can be big or small
- pumpkins grow on a vine
- pumpkins have seeds
- pumpkins can be used for jack o’ lanterns
After we finish our big anchor chart, I provide the kids with mini-pumpkin cut-outs to write out a few of their favorite pumpkin facts from our class list. Then we create a small paper pocket on their lapbook that will hold the fact cards.
3. Teach the Pumpkin Life Cycle
Next, I like to dive into the pumpkin life cycle. A great book to preface this activity is From Seed to Pumpkin by Wendy Pfeffer. I put the read-aloud of this book from YouTube on my board and we take a few minutes to watch and listen.
After watching the video, I like to make another large anchor chart detailing the life cycle. You can draw pictures for each stage or glue cut-outs to your poster board as you create the chart with your class. Once you have finished the class chart, provide your students with their own picture cards to illustrate the life cycle in their lap books.
The ones we use have an accordion-style fold on them that we glue to the lapbook so they can be extended to illustrate each step in the pumpkin life cycle.
The kids LOVE creating these and showing them off later to their families!
4. Pumpkins Need/Have/Are Charts
This writing activity is great for small groups or your writing center. For this activity, students will brainstorm what pumpkins need, have, and are before writing down something for each category. Depending on the age of your kiddos, you might need to offer some inspiration to get them started.
I like to offer the example of what apples need/have/are first off as a refresher. I’ll say something like apples needs water to grow, have red skin, and are fruits! Then I let my students think about how pumpkins relate to apples and come up with some describing words on their own.
5. Label Pumpkins
This next activity is always fun to do when you have a real pumpkin that you’ve sliced in half.
I save the one from our first activity for this! If you’re doing this a day or 2 later, don’t forget to pop your pumpkin in a fridge so it will last!
To get started, I show the kids our real pumpkin and point out each part and its name.
Then, I give my kiddos a pumpkin labeling worksheet and ask them to name each piece they see. Once they’ve got it down, they can color their pumpkins, cut out the pieces and glue them down to their lapbook.
This is a wonderful activity to help prompt students on some new pumpkin vocabulary.
6. Pumpkin Data Activities
I like to include some pumpkin data on our lapbooks for a little bit of math integration into our pumpkin activities. For this one, I have my students explore several things on a pumpkin and write down what they see. We check for:
- pumpkin circumference
- number of ribs on their pumpkin
- if it sinks or floats
- how much it weights
- the height using snap cubes to measure
I usually do this activity in small groups and have 1 child carry out each activity. Then we glue the paper flap for this activity to the lapbooks and write down what we discover under each one.
7. Discuss Pumpkin Treats
This is always a favorite among our pumpkin activities! My students love talking about all the fun things we can make with pumpkins. Often, children are unfamiliar with all the yummy treats we can make with pumpkin so I help them brainstorm. We talk about:
- pumpkin soup
- pumpkin muffins
- pumpkin pie
- pumpkin pudding
- roasted pumpkin seeds
Then I let the kids decide what they would like to write and illustrate for each of their cards and glue the pieces down to their lapbooks. As a final, fun activity, I usually bring in some kind of fun pumpkin-flavored treat for my kiddos to have on this day as well.
This simple pumpkin cupcake recipe is a great option if you have time to bake a batch. I skip the frosting as they are plenty sweet on their own. If this isn’t an option, try grabbing some pumpkin butter and graham crackers for an easy treat!
Add Some Digital Pumpkin Activities
I love using lapbooks for our pumpkin activities because they offer so many opportunities for hands-on learning to my students. My kindergarteners can work on writing, cutting, coloring, and gluing as we go through our lessons. But if you find that you need digital pumpkin activities, I also have this resource available for Google Classroom.
The digital version is fantastic to use for review, whole group instruction, technology centers, homework, or for students who were absent during the in-person lesson. I find that completing the paper version in class with my kiddos and then reviewing it the next day as a group on Google Slides helps my kindergarteners remember what they learned! I also love projecting the Google Slide activities to use as part of our lessons.
Try Lapbooks for Pumpkin Activities with your Students!
Lapbooks are so great to keep a record of all the fun pumpkin activities you’ve done as a class. Once your kids have completed their worksheets and foldables, they will love showing off their fancy lapbooks to family members at pick-up! If you’re interested in checking out all the fun pumpkin activities I mentioned in this post, you can take a peek at the full resource.
Aside from the activities I chose to include in our lapbooks, you’ll find a variety of other options! Feel free to pick and choose whichever pieces work best for your group to create the perfect pumpkin lapbooks.
Save This Post
Don’t forget to pin this post to your favorite classroom Pinterest board so you’ll be all set when it comes time to plan your pumpkin activities