Jack O’ Lanterns are a favorite part of the fall season. Are you carving pumpkins this weekend?
Extend the fun with these activities:
- While you are doing the adult parts, i.e. cutting and scraping the pumpkin, let your child help scoop out the innards or let him start separating the seeds from the flesh. This messy fun helps little fingers develop the fine motor skills that will one day help your child hold a pencil.
- Our friends at the Imagination Tree Blog, suggest using your pumpkin innards as a sensory experience. Make “pumpkin goop” or let your little one loose with wooden spoons, potato mashers and a big tub of innards for play time. Ask your child how it feels to touch the pumpkin–is it slimy? Cold? Wet? Use all the describing words you can think of! This supports your child’s vocabulary which is an important skill that will help her be Ready to Read!
- Save a seed or two to plant in the spring. Talk to your child about what seeds are and how they are the “instructions” for making new pumpkins for next year. Check out some books to help explain this process.
- What to do with all of those seeds? Cook them, of course! You can bake them on an oiled cookie sheet in the oven for 40 minutes at 350 degrees or skillet fry them in a bit of oil on the stove top until they are brown and smell deliciously nutty! Add cinnamon and sugar or salt and garlic powder for a tasty snack.
Have fun! And send us pictures of you and your child enjoying your pumpkin!