Monday, November 4, 2013


 Last week, there was a lot excitement about the upcoming Halloween festivities (which for us means costumes, trick or treating on our street, and helping to pass out candy). Instead of sticking with our Growing Up Wild curriculum for the week, I decided to spend a week on pumpkins and a few Halloween related activities. It was a fun week! Here is what we accomplished. 

We did a variety of activities with a pumpkin we actually planted and grew ourselves! (Literally this was the only thing we planted that made it!) The kids had to find the circumference of the pumpkin using linking shapes. They each made and recorded their predictions first. Our pumpkin was 32 links.  

They measured the height of the pumpkin using blocks. The pumpkin was 15 blocks high. 
Here is where we recorded our predictions and actually findings. 

In her journal, Ava had to draw a picture of the pumpkin and describe it. She made a neat observation. She said, "Hey mommy, the lines on the pumpkin remind me of the segments of a worm!". 

The activity all the kids had been waiting for since they helped Daddy pick the pumpkin out of the garden was the carving! Lilly wasn't so impressed with the way it felt, but the other two had fun separating the "guts" from the seeds. 

Ava was in charge of the face design this year. I don't have a picture, but in her journal she needed to draw different ideas. It was cute because she showed her ideas to Dominic and then showed me the idea that they both agreed on. The picture above shows the winning design. 

The kids really wanted to eat the seeds, so we roasted all the seeds they had collected. They were really good! 
In math Ava continued practicing counting and writing numbers through 30. 
Ava was also introduced to adding and subtracting this week! She was so excited. She loves writing the number sentences and finding the answers.  
All four of our children dressed up as a character from the Wizard of Oz. When we were at the craft store earlier in the week, we found this neat felt board kit with all the characters for only $4.99. It was a fun center choice for the week! 

We also sang some Halloween related songs and brought back out the classic 5 Little Pumpkins felt board activity. 

We read a non-fiction story on the life cycle of a pumpkin and created the mini book Pumpkin, Pumpkin What do you See. 
I found the mini book on Teachers Pay Teacher. I can't find the link to the blog. 

We had chocolate scented play dough in the sensory table along with Halloween cookie cutters, bats, bugs, and spiders. 

In addition to our daily reading lessons, we also played several rounds of pumpkin patch sight word memory. I just wrote sight words on the back of pumpkins to create this game. It was a fun way for Ava to practice! 
Finally on Halloween afternoon, we took some time to make some pumpkin chocolate chip muffins! They were a hit! 

Ava has been waiting for November for months. She has been very interested in learning more about Native American culture and more about the pilgrims. Though we have found and read lots of books on the topic, I promised that we would dedicate our school time in November to this theme. Here we are in November! This week we are having a slight set back with school time. Or maybe I should say, this week is when we get to experience the more flexible schedule of home schooling. Our youngest foster son has been in the hospital since Saturday. Right now his health is a priority and one of us is with him 24/7. The other kids get to have a fun spontaneous play date with good friends and visit with Grandma and Grandpa for a couple nights. When our house is back and running, (hopefully in the next couple of days!!) we will dive into learning more about the Native Americans and the pilgrims.


  1. I love the measuring with different items idea. You are so creative, Amanda! I'm praying for your little one - and for you!


  2. another great unit. and prayers for health.