This week is pumpkin week in room 309. We started the week with a big, round, orange pumpkin sitting on the table attracting wonder as all the students randomly filed in. It later was announced that it was our class pumpkin. For the week. One that we all touched, smelled, held, and looked at to see what it was really all about. On the outside. We read about it. We watched videos about it. And we wrote about it. We did math worksheets counting pumpkin seeds, and we even all guessed with our very best mathematical estimations how many seeds were in our pumpkin.
Then Tuesday brought the inside viewing. And touching. And smelling. And actual counting.
After Monday’s outside viewing, we cut it open. My sweet husband cut it open for us. I’m not so good with knives. My thumbs still have scars from Fair Friday’s classroom caramel apple cutting. We looked inside. We felt inside. All that squishy, gooey, slimy pumpkin innards that we know and love. And then it was time for math. We estimated the day before how many seeds we thought were in our pumpkin. Tuesday we counted them. We counted by ones for the total amount of each of our handfuls. We counted by twos, and we made sets of 10 to count them easier for our final count. One counted by fives. All 490 seeds were counted. One student was only 10 shy of our total at 500. Then some of the seeds were gently glued into place to make the insides of their pumpkin work of art with orange yarn for the pulp. And some went home to plant to grow their own pumpkin patches.
A handful I saved for Thursday’s project. We will each plant a pumpkin seed along with four other seeds in plastic gloves, and make a “garden in a glove” to watch in the upcoming weeks.
Once our pumpkin mess was cleaned up, we all sampled handfuls of salted roasted pumpkin seeds that I had purchased for just the occasion. They were a hit!
Where and when else but fall can you teach reading and writing, math, science and social studies all in one contained classroom with just one resource, a pumpkin? Especially when it’s October!
As our grand finale, my students will paint their pumpkin blue for the water and whatever color they choose for the land masses, the continents, to create their own classroom globe.
One of our classmates has recently had to leave the country and is in Mexico with a family emergency. We can see exactly where she is via a map, and take pictures showing her the empathy her classmates share for her. All this from our pumpkin! Who started with just one little seed!
I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow. So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything but only God who gives the growth. 1 Corinthians 3:6-8
Love and laughter,