This month at RisingOaks Early Learning | St.Brigid, the preschool 2 classroom was able to dissect and explore a pumpkin. First, we talked about pumpkins and the different sizes, shapes and colors they come in. “I like the big orange pumpkins” Connor said. “I like the baby pumpkins” Harlee said. We talked about how some pumpkins feel bumpy, smooth and even slimy. We discussed our experiences at pumpkin patches and how we can pick our own pumpkins with our families.
Once the educator opened up the top of the pumpkin she passed it around for the children to touch and feel. “It’s slimy,” Karter said. After the top had been passed around, the children were able to put their hand inside and feel around. They expressed what they were feeling. “I feel something, it feels like a seed” Nash Y exclaimed. The children were encouraged to pull out the seeds and place them in a bowl. “Once we collect all the seeds, we can wash them and put them on a pan to roast in the oven” the educators told them. The children seemed very excited to ty the seeds.
Finally, we cut the pumpkin in half which allowed the children to fully explore them. “It smells funny,” Norah said. Cooper said, “This feels funny”. Once it was opened up, the children were able to collect the rest of the seeds. We talked about how we were going to clean them. “We wash them with water” Tommy said. When we were done washing them, we laid them out on a roasting pan. “I hope we don’t burn them” Connor said with concern. The educator reassured everyone that they would not burn and that a timer would be set so they could check on them. Once they were done, we taste tested them with our afternoon snack. It was about a 50/50 split with liking them vs not liking the seeds.
We continued to talk about pumpkins and the different components that make a pumpkin. This was a wonderful fall sensory activity to explore together as a class.