Children love going to the pumpkin patch and choosing their own pumpkin for the fall season. Getting to carve the pumpkin and make faces in it is tons of fun for them, but did you know this time-old tradition could be used to help improve their math skills as well?
This fall, let your child practice the important skill of shape recognition with their familiar autumn friend, the pumpkin! In this activity, your child will work on this skill by identifying, drawing, and carving geometric shapes out of a Jack-O-Lantern face. This is a great visual and tactile activity for young kids and can even help them develop their fine motor skills as they scoop the seeds of the pumpkin out. So go on and let your child learn while having an ooey-gooey time!
What You Need:
- Carving knife
- Big bowl
- Plastic spoon
- Permanent marker
- Piece of paper
What You Do:
- Get your child to list shapes. Help them draw the shapes they call out on a piece of paper with the pencil. These shapes will be the basis for the Jack-o-lantern, so discuss and let them pick which shapes they would like to use for her pumpkin's eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Using the permanent marker, help your child draw these shapes on the pumpkin.
- Carve the pumpkin for your child. Have them point out the various shapes as you cut them out.
- Let your child scoop out the pulp with the spoon or their hands and place it into the bowl.
- How many pumpkin seeds did they scoop out? For added math practice, have them wash them and count. Listen to them count and assist as needed. When your child's done, use a favorite recipe and bake the seeds for a nutritional treat.
When you're finished, place a candle inside and watch the Jack-o-lantern "glow" with pride!