What goes better with Fall than pumpkins? We have many fun and easy pumpkin activities for kindergarten and preschool and even toddlers to enjoy this fall season. Combine pumpkin science, sensory, and fine motor play, along with pumpkin art activities for a simple to set-up pumpkin theme!
Enjoy A Pumpkin Theme This Fall
Hands-on learning through play is perfect for this time of year! What better way than with a seasonal preschool pumpkin theme?
The wagon ride to the pumpkin patch, have you ever been on one of those? I know we remember it fondly every time October rolls around. There’s so much to love about fall and pumpkin season! Check out all the activities below you can do with pumpkins.
Make an erupting pumpkin volcano, try fizzy pumpkin art, learn about the parts of a pumpkin and more. These simple preschool pumpkin activities use items you have or can pick up quickly and inexpensively at your local store.
Our pumpkin projects are perfect for preschool-age kids ranging from 3-6 but also work well for kindergarten and early elementary-age kids. Of course, you can extend the learning with more pumpkin science experiments and pumpkin art activities, too!
These simple ideas will have you enjoying great Fall learning all season long. Easy-to-find supplies and using inexpensive pumpkins make great opportunities for hands-on play and learning.
Also, check out the printable preschool activities pack at the end, including five senses activities.
Tips For Setting Up A Pumpkin Unit
Creating a pumpkin theme unit for preschool and kindergarten can be both educational and fun for young learners. Here are seven tips to help you set up a successful pumpkin theme unit:
1. Start With Discussion
Start the unit by introducing the concept of pumpkins. Engage the children in discussing pumpkins, their colors, shapes, and uses. Show pictures of different types of pumpkins and talk about where they come from. Try to find a variety of real pumpkins to add to the room.
2. Create A Pumpkin Sensory Station
Set up a hands-on exploration station with different types and sizes of pumpkins. Allow children to touch, feel, and examine the pumpkins closely. Encourage them to describe the pumpkins using sensory words like rough, bumpy, and round. Check out more preschool science center ideas.
3. Pumpkin Art and Craft
Use art and craft activities related to pumpkins. Children can paint or decorate paper plates to look like pumpkins, create pumpkin collages using orange and green paper, or make pumpkin prints using cut halves of real pumpkins dipped in paint. See how we did that with apples. Find even more projects below!
Grab our playful pumpkin template with four unique pumpkin images to download and print.
4. Pumpkin Math Activities
Teach simple math concepts using pumpkins. Children can count pumpkin seeds, compare the sizes of different pumpkins, and sort pumpkins based on attributes like color and size. You could also create a simple graph showing the favorite types of pumpkins in the class.
5. Explore Pumpkin Science
Explore pumpkin science by carving a pumpkin together. Discuss the parts of a pumpkin (stem, skin, pulp, seeds) and their functions. Let children feel the inside of a pumpkin and investigate the seeds. Talk about how pumpkins grow and what they need to thrive. Create a mini volcano in a pumpkin!
6. Pumpkin Story Time
Look for stories that involve pumpkins, Halloween, or fall themes. After reading, engage the children in discussions about the stories’ characters, settings, and events. See our book suggestions below.
7. Pumpkin Cooking or Snack Time
You could make pumpkin muffins, pumpkin pie bites, or even prepare a simple pumpkin soup (if allergies and dietary restrictions allow). This hands-on experience will be fun and help children understand that pumpkins are not just for decorations.
These pumpkin-themed books are sure to captivate kindergarteners and preschoolers’ imaginations and get them excited about pumpkins and the fall season! (I am an Amazon Affiliate.)
Pumpkin, Pumpkin by Jeanne Titherington
Follow a little boy’s journey as he plants a pumpkin seed, nurtures it as it grows, and watches it transform into a big, orange pumpkin. This book beautifully captures the life cycle of a pumpkin from seed to harvest.
“Too Many Pumpkins” by Linda White
In this fun and colorful story, Rebecca Estelle discovers a bumper crop of pumpkins in her garden after a pumpkin falls off a truck and smashes on her driveway. At first annoyed, she eventually finds creative ways to use her pumpkins with the help of her neighbors.
“The Biggest Pumpkin Ever” by Steven Kroll
Two adorable mice, Clayton and Desmond want to grow the biggest pumpkin ever. Without realizing it, they end up nurturing the same pumpkin vine. This book teaches cooperation and friendship sweetly and engagingly.
“It’s Pumpkin Time!” by Zoe Hall
Follow along as a brother and sister plant, care for, and eventually harvest pumpkins. This book not only covers the growth of pumpkins but also includes a simple pumpkin recipe at the end for some hands-on fun.
“Five Little Pumpkins” by Dan Yaccarino
This classic counting rhyme comes to life with colorful illustrations and playful rhymes. Follow the journey of five little pumpkins as they roll out of sight in this engaging and interactive book. Fun to pair with our 5 Little Pumpkins STEM Challenge.
Also, try these Pumpkin STEAM-inspired books with hands-on activities.
Try These Pumpkin Activities
Click the links below to try our best pumpkin activities for preschoolers and kindergarteners this Fall.
Pumpkin Life Cycle Worksheets
This life cycle of a pumpkin activity set is the perfect way to kick off a fall pumpkin-themed unit!
Combine mini pumpkins with a simple kitchen chemistry experiment!
Incorporating math concepts into activities with real pumpkins can be a fun and engaging way for preschoolers to learn. Check out seven creative ways to practice math with pumpkins.
Fun pumpkin activity for teaching math and fine motor activity for kindergarten or preschoolers.
Engineering and dramatic play inside a pumpkin!
Another fun pumpkin activity for preschoolers or kindergarten. Learn about decomposition with a rotting pumpkin experiment.
Make a fairy house with Lego bricks that light up inside a white pumpkin. Every fairy house needs a fairy door! Pumpkin seeds add a fun, dramatic play element to this kindergarten pumpkin activity.
Use a pumpkin for a car tunnel. Run Hot Wheels tracks or train tracks right through a pumpkin! Can you make a car fly through the pumpkin and land on the other side?
Let kids explore the inner workings of a pumpkin. A preschool pumpkin activity that makes great science and sensory play! Combine it with our parts of a pumpkin printable.
You don’t need a Jack O’Lantern face to enjoy squishing pumpkin inside a sensory bag! Kids are sure to enjoy this mess free sensory fun.
Kitchen science with a non-Newtonian fluid. Cornstarch and water, or oobleck is a must try activity! Give it a pumpkin twist!
Taste safe sensory play with real pumpkin. Cloud dough is a great sensory play recipe for preschool or kindergarten to have on hand any time of the year!
Get your kids exploring pumpkin themes with homemade pumpkin pie playdough. Use our easy pumpkin playdough recipe and check out the fun activity suggestions to encourage hands-on learning, fine motor skills, counting, letter recognition and more!
Mess free pumpkin painting in a bag sensory fun for kids. Finger painting for little ones without the big clean up!
Bubble wrap is definitely more than just a squishy packing material that’s fun for kids to pop! Here you can use it to create fun and colorful pumpkin prints for fall.
This fizzy pumpkin art activity is a fun way to dig into a bit of science and art all at the same time! Make your own baking soda paint and enjoy a fizzing chemical reaction.
Fabulous fine motor skills and an easy craft idea for young kids make yarn-wrapped pumpkins perfect for a fall theme!
Combine learning about the parts of the pumpkin with a fun coloring page. Use markers, pencils or even paints!
Printable Preschool Activities Pack
Want to set up an entire center with a pumpkin theme? I’ve got you covered with our newest Pumpkin Theme Pack. Get ready to explore this year with our growing Preschool STEM Bundle!
There are 6 fun preschool themes to get you started. This is an ” I can explore” series!
Each unit contains approximately 15 activities, with instructions and templates as needed. Hands-on activities are provided to keep it fun and exciting. This includes sensory bins, experiments, games, and more! Easy supplies keep it low cost, and book suggestions add to the learning time.
Or grab the Pumpkin Preschool Pack on its own!