| At this time of year, try using a REAL pumpkin when making your pies, bread, etc.|
1. Children will see what the inside of a pumpkin really looks like. Have them use adjectives to describe what they see, smell, and feel. Depending upon the age group, have children draw or write about the experience and mail it to a friend or relative.
2. Bake the seeds. If possible, compare them to seeds you buy at the grocery store. Which tastes better? Why do you think so? Which is cheaper? (NOTE: Remember the cost of the pumpkin for this answer!) Do these seeds remind you of any other seeds you can eat? Which ones?
3. By all means, let your children help you bake! They will be practicing measurement skills, reading, following directions, and sequencing, not to mention health and safety. Ask what would happen if they put in too much or too little of an ingredient. What would happen if they skipped a step or reversed the order? For instance, they put all the ingredients in a bowl without mixing them, pour this into the pie shell, and bake. What do they think the final result will look and taste like? By asking such questions, children practice critical thinking.
4. If possible, use real pumpkin meat for one of your recipes and canned pumpkin for another. Which is easier to use? Compare the look, taste, and texture of the final result. Which do you prefer? Why?
5. Read about pumpkins. What did you learn that surprised you? Compare them to other vegetables.
6. If possible, visit a pumpkin patch or watch a video, perhaps sent by Pen Pals or family members up north.
I hope you have found these tips useful. Have fun and remember that Reading is FUNdamental!!
About the Author
Freda J. Glatt retired from teaching after a 34-year career in early childhood and elementary education. Her focus, now, is to reach out and help others reinforce reading comprehension and develop a love for reading. Visit her site at http://www.sandralreading.com. Reading is FUNdamental!
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