The preschool kiddos and I delved into a fun fall S.T.E.M. activity this week! We explored pumpkin math, pumpkin engineering, and pumpkin literacy! It was a bigger hit than I thought it would be, and the children are already planning extensions to it. I’m adding it to the list of must-do fall activities!
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preschool pumpkin math and engineering
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When I planned this activity, I wanted to explore a few concepts with the children:
- Number identification
- One-to-one correspondence
- Planning and building structures with unusual materials
- Using technology in a simple project
I think, over the course of this project, the kids have done a wonderful job with each of the concepts. It also helped me to see what each child understood about the topics.
What we did
I placed the items out on a tray and explained to the kids I had a challenge for them! Could they count and make different structures using pumpkin candies I had leftover from last Halloween? Of course, the children could hardly wait to have their turns!
At first, we tried using toothpicks to build with (like last year’s winter animal dens), but that was not successful. The pumpkin candies, being old and stale, were rather hard. So getting toothpicks into them consistently just didn’t work out well. Once we determined the toothpicks wouldn’t work, we grabbed some play dough to act as “glue” and got started.
Each child grabbed a magnetic number, and then we talked about what number they each chose. I then encouraged the children to count out the appropriate amount of pumpkins, helping as needed. Then the kiddos were challenged to build structures with their pumpkins, using play dough to help the pumpkins stick together!
Whoa, did these children love the pumpkin math and engineering challenge! They planned and built and planned some more. Their structures were random conglomerations and castles and pumpkin patches and “I don’t know what it is right now.”
Once the structures were done, the children were allowed to use my cell phone to take photos of their creations with their numbers. I also took some photos, of course! It was interesting to see who liked the different aspects of this activity – some were super into counting, others loooooved building, and a third group just wanted to take photos!
More fall STEM activities from the #TeachECE crew:
How Long Am I? Measuring with Leaves by Tiny Tots Adventures