Lesson plan

Pumpkin Creatures

This lesson plan integrates art and reading to create a character by personifying a pumpkin. Your students will enjoy writing a story about a character that they have created!
Grade Subject View aligned standards

Students will be able to use personification to develop and describe their characters.

(5 minutes)
  • Ask your students to define the term character trait.
  • Remind them that character traits are adjectives that describe someone's personality.
  • Write this on the board.
  • Ask students to define personification.
  • Remind them that personification is applying a human characteristic to something nonhuman.
  • Write the definition on the board.
(15 minutes)
  • Ask your students to give you examples of character traits, and write them under the definition.
  • If they are struggling with this, ask them to describe a character they are familiar with. For example, you can use a character from a story you recently read in class or from a movie they have most likely seen.
  • Create a character web.
  • While doing this, ask them to give examples of how they know that trait applies to that character. For example, the character Olaf in the movie Frozen is happy because he smiles a lot.
  • Then, ask your students to give examples of personification, and write them under the definition. For example, snowmen like Olaf usually don't move or talk.
(10 minutes)
  • Tell your students that they are going to create their own pumpkin creatures.
  • Show students an example you have already prepared.
  • Explain to your students that they can use the character trait list to help develop their pumpkin creature.
  • Have them give their characters names and personalities to write a story. For example: I am Polly the Pumpkin, and I love baking pies.
(60 minutes)
  • Help students create their own creatures as needed.
  • Help them with making the pumpkin "glow" by cutting out their shape and face and pasting a strip of yellow construction paper behind the holes.
  • Encourage them to make their pumpkins as human-like as possible, with arms, clothes, props, etc.
  • Enrichment: Encourage your students to write more than one paragraph about their creatures. Ask them to use different figures of speech in their stories.
  • Support: Give your students other examples of personification to refer to, such as characters from movies. Have them draw pictures of these characters instead of making the pumpkin creatures.
(20 minutes)
  • Hold a class sharing time for students to share their creatures.
  • Have students read their stories about their creatures to the class.
  • Ask your students how they used personification in their creatures.
  • Direct your students to describe their characters' traits.
(10 minutes)
  • Review the definitions of personification and character traits.
  • Applaud students' efforts and let them know how impressed you are with their creativity.
  • Hang creatures for others to see.

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