Thursday, October 23, 2014

Five Senses and Fall

Fall is a perfect time of the year for children to learn about the 5 senses.  Children can see, hear, smell, touch, and taste all of the changes that occur during the fall.  Fall is also the perfect time for children to write and record information about their 5 senses.

Before young children can write about fall, they need to have rich experiences with the changes that occur in the fall.  They need to have conversations about fall.  They need to express their thoughts orally before they write too.

How can they experience it? We use our five senses all of the time during the fall. We taste the different types of apples.  We see the leaves change colors.  We touch pumpkins at the pumpkin patch.  We smell apple cider and pumpkin pie.  We hear the leaves crunch beneath our feet and geese flying overhead.

During the fall, I like to take my children on nature walks around the school.  We carry our writer's notebooks and jot down thoughts and draw pictures about our walk.  We take time to look. We take time to listen.  Some children will walk and write or draw quick sketches. Some children will sit down outside and write.  Some do both. When we come back into the classroom, I give them opportunities to finish their thoughts as we share and discuss with our friends. We then come together as a group and make a list or anchor chart of our experiences.  We turn and talk to our friends again.  Did they notice the same thing?  Did they see or hear something different?

All of these experiences help young children become writers.  We then make a 5 senses chart labeling our Five Senses and what we can see, hear, smell, touch, and taste during autumn.  This anchor chart and the children's notebooks provide experiences that will prepare them for writing.  Our anchor chart grows over the period of a couple of weeks.  Vocabulary takes time to build.  Writers need time to write.  I love to look at their first attempts and then compare them to their writing after we've had more experiences and conversations about autumn.  The growth is amazing.

Here is a sample of my new mini-video that I just completed.  The song is titled "It's Time for Fall" and is a predictable text song that covers all of the changes that occur during the fall. You can read more about it HERE.

I made a book for your children to use as they write about their five senses and fall.  It comes in 3 different versions depending on the age and developmental writing level of your children.   

CLICK HERE to download your free printable books.

You can encourage young children to become writers by helping them have experiences to write about, conversations to build their vocabulary, and opportunities to express their thoughts in both pictures and in words.  When children uses their 5 senses, they become more empowered to use vocabulary and make connections to their writing.  And autumn is the perfect season to use our five senses to connect to writing.

Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

I Spy - Eye Spy Dollar Store Game

Children need hands-on engaging activities while learning and reviewing skills. When I create a game for centers, I think of how it can be differentiated to meet the wide range of learners in the early childhood classroom.  The best activities are ones that children beg to do over and over again and can be transferred into all areas of the curriculum.  Teach the procedures for playing, then let the learning begin.

I receive questions from parents and grandparents who visit my blog and want activities for working with their children at home.  This game would be easy to implement at home, as it can be used for reinforcing letters, sounds, sight words, word families, and math skills too.

I purchased the eyeball above from the Dollar Tree.  I didn't take a picture before I took them out of the bag, but here is what they look like on Amazon.  The Dollar Tree carries these during the fall, but if you can't find these you can use a googly eye too.  Amazon links are included below.


  1. Write the skill on the white sticker or directly onto the cups.
  2. Model how to play in whole group or small group setting.
  3. Have the children close their eyes.
  4. Place the eyeball under one of the cups.
  5. Chant, "Eye Spy, I Spy."
  6. Children open their eyes.
  7. Call on students one at a time to guess which cup is hiding the eyeball.
  8. Students read the word or the skill of the cup where they think the eyeball is.
  9. Students lift the cup to see if they are right
  10. Game continues until the eyeball is found.
  11. Repeat game again.

I purchased the cups shown in the picture ABOVE at the Dollar Tree too. They came in packages of 20 and were in the birthday section with the paper goods.  To store the game, stack the cups and place in a small tub or container along with the eyeball.  Or you can just stack the cups standing up and place the eyeball in the top cup.  Your children can:
  • Read the word.
  • Spell the word.
  • Use the word in a sentence.

The cups in the picture ABOVE are mini-sized cups from the Dollar Tree.  These come in packages of 20 and were located with the kitchen cups and plates. Notice how small they are in comparison to the eyeball.  It fits perfectly underneath.  These cups take up less room and work great for letters, words, and numbers too. Your children can:
  • Say the letter.
  • Say the sound.
  • Name something that begins with the letter.
  • Put the cups in ABC order first.


Your children can also work on reading word families.  The following are ways to address the skill but also change the skill for students who need remediation or a challenge.
  • Work on one word family at a time.
  • Work on two word families at a time.
    • Students can sort the word cups when finished.
  • Student says the sounds for each letter on the cup and then blends the sounds together to read the word.
  • Student names the letters on the cup. (REMEDIATION ACTIVITY for Letter Fluency Practice)
  • Student reads the word then changes it. (CHALLENGE ACTIVITY)
    • Student reads the word cat and changes it to cats (adds an s).
    • Student reads the word sat and changes it to sit (irregular verb), sits, sitting.
    • Student reads the word then thinks of a bigger word that has the word family in it, such as pat - pattern, fan-fancy, ban-banner, man-manners, fat-fatter, tan-tanagram.

  • Shapes
    • Name the shape.
    • Name an real world object that has the shape.
  • Colors
    • Work on color recognition.
    • Say the color.
    • Spell the color word.
  • Counting Dots
    • Count the number of dots.
    • Use sticker dots for subtizing or recognizing without counting.
  • Numbers
    • Work with numbers from 0-5.
    • Work with numbers from 0-10.
    • Work with numbers to 20.
    • Work with numbers to 100.
    • Work with numbers to 1000.
    • Say the number and tell whether it is odd or even.
    • Say the number and then give a math fact to make that number.
      • 5 could be 2+3
      • 10 could be 4 + 6
      • 20 could be 10 + 10
    • Write math facts on the cups.
      • Student solves the math fact.
    • Write 2 numbers on the cup.
      • Students says whether it is greater than, less than, or equal.
  • Children's Names
    • Use students' names or family names.
    • Children read the name.
    • Children spell the name.
  • Children's Pictures
    • Use students' pictures or family pictures.
  • Animal Stickers
    • Name the animal.
    • Spell the animal name.
    • Name the animal and the habitat.
  • Parts of Speech 
    • Nouns, Verbs, Adjectives
    • Read the word and identify whether it is a noun, verb, or adjective.
    • Say the word and use it in a sentence.
  • Vocabulary Words 
    • Read the word and then say the definition.

Children can play in pairs at center time.  One student hides the eyeball, the other person reads the skill and tries to locate it.

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Monday, October 20, 2014

Easy Dollar Store Game Pieces for Kid's Activities

I wanted to share an easy way to make game pieces for both reading, math, and just for fun too.  I was at the Dollar Tree last week and saw these cupcake toppers hanging in the aisle.   They were colorful and seasonal.  So I decided to bring them home and make some games with them.

The first thing you need to do is to remove the stick.  Carefully slide the stick back and forth (not much) and it will release from the object.  Pull the stick out and you have 24 game pieces to use for all types of games.  They are thick and slick, so they do not need to be laminated.

Here are some ways to use these pieces.  First, put dot stickers on one side of the pumpkins or other cupcake topper pieces.  Write the ABC's on them.  You can put the capital letter on one side and the lowercase letter on the other side. Put them in a container and have the children draw one out of the bag, say the letter, make the sound.  You can even leave one blank.  If they draw the blank one, they say "Jack-o-Lantern" and everyone has to put their game pieces back in the container.  Or your children can draw them out of a container and put them in ABC order.

Make word family game pieces with them.  Make sets for individual word families.  Put them in a baggie.  Children see how many words they can make.  They can record the words in a word notebook or on a piece of blank paper.

  • Write the uppercase and lowercase letters on the same side
  • Write sight words on side.  
  • Write numbers on one side.
  • Draw shapes on one side.
  • Color in the circle with different color markers.


Write numbers and corresponding dots to make math games.

You can also find these cupcake toppers at party supply stores, Michaels, and Hobby Lobby.  I found spiders and skeletons too.

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Sunday, October 19, 2014

Part Part Whole Spider Web Math

This is a differentiated post for working with part-part whole.  One of the concepts children need to understand is that numbers can be decomposed into other sets of numbers.  So 5 can actually be decomposed (taken apart) to make a set of 4 and a set of 1.  Learning this concept will help children understand basic addition and subtraction facts by developing number sense first.

I like to make easy games that can be used at different levels of instruction.  This one works great at any time of the year, but October is a great month to play it too.  I give my children paper plates and let them draw a web out of 2 different colors.  Why not throw in some finer motor drawing at the same time?

There are different levels of playing the following game to meet the diverse needs of your students.


  • small paper plates
  • 2 different colored markers
  • flies or spiders from the dollar store


Playing this helps children learn they can take a set of objects and separate them into different sets.  This is also a great way to introduce story problems through play.  I call this game SOME HERE-SOME THERE.  I start by putting all 5 flies above the spider webs (in the air).  This represents the whole number of 5.  Then we say the story problem below.

This can be played over and over again by having the children play with different scenarios of the the flies getting stuck in the web.  They are learning that the number 5 represents 5 flies and the 5 flies can be separated into different groups. For example: 5-0, 4-1, 3-2, 2-3, 1-4, 0-5  This also lays the foundation for understanding the basic addition facts of 5.  


After your children have played SOME HERE - SOME THERE, add a die to the game. 
  • Put 5 flies on the left web.
  • Roll the die.  If a 6 is rolled, roll again.
  • Move the number of flies from the left web to the right web.
  • How many flies are on the left web?
  • How many flies are on the right web?
  • Say the number sentence.
  • 5 flies (total flies on the left at the start) - 3 flies (flies on the right now) = 2 flies (what is on the left web now).

Children need many experiences manipulating objects within a set BEFORE they begin recording their information into more formal equations and drawings.  After your children play this game several times, add some recording sheets (plain paper) or fold 4 sheets of 8 1/2 x 11 copy paper in half.  Staple on the left side to make a book.

  • Children play the Level 1 game first.
  • They draw 2 circles on each page to represent the web. 
  • Children draw a picture of the flies in the web to match the hands-on game.
I LOVE fall and teaching.  Have fun playing this game.

Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, October 18, 2014

DIY Rekenrek

Rekenrek is the buzz word today but has actually been around for quite some time.  You can buy them or attempt to make them as a DIY project.  I've tried several ways of making them including craft foam and 4X6 laminated cards.  They work fine for a while, but are flimsy and don't last as long.

Up front, I'll just admit it.  I am a paint stick hoarder.  I love to make activities and games with paint sticks.  Put paint stick in my search box and you will see :)  So it makes sense that I turned paint sticks into rekenreks.  And the jury is out, after one year, they have held together nicely and are easy to store in a bucket.  When the children need their math tools, they grab a stick.  It's hands on and the paint stick gives them a handle to hold while they manipulate the beads.  

The post is part of the BRIGHT IDEAS LINKY PARTY.  Keep on reading for links to other amazing ideas.

These are the drilled-hole version.  I slide the pipe cleaner through the holes and used a glue gun to secure the ends.

I also use BIGGIE BEADS!!! instead of pony beads.  My secret is OUT!  I discovered BIGGIE BEADS in a craft store 4 years ago, and it just hit me that these would be much better than pony beads. And even better, they are cheaper in the long run.  You get tons - 1200 beads for $8.99 at Amazon or you can use your 40% off Sunday coupon at Michaels.  They are used to make crafts where you iron them down to make different shapes such as butterflies.  But I digress, they are AWESOME!!!  In fact, sign up by email at the top right corner so you don't miss out on any of the posts I have about using these in the classroom for math manipulatives. 


  • Paint stick
  • 2 black pipe cleaners
  • 20 Biggie Beads consisting of 2 colors 10 each
  • Glue gun

You can choose 2 different methods for making these rekenreks.  In the picture above, I had my husband drill 4 small holes in the paint stick - two at each end.  Don't have a drill?  No worries. I went all of last year doing it with this method as seen in this picture.

These are the glued version.  I glue the pipe cleaners to the ends.
Glue the pipe cleaners down at the ends.  They work the same.  The main thing to be aware of is that you want the ends to be equal, so when you slide the beads they line up.
  • Cut pipe cleaners to the desired length.
  • Glue down the pipe cleaners on the left side making sure they line up evenly.
  • Slide 5 beads of the same color on each of the pipe cleaners.
  • Slide 5 more beads of a different color after the previous step.
  • Pull tight or stretch the pipe cleaner tightly.
  • Glue the pipe cleaners on the right side.
  • Let cool.
  • Ready to learn!
  • If you have children who are left-handed, you can make the hand holder on the opposite side.  Just make sure the bead colors will be in the same placement as the right handed version, which actually means the opposite.
Where can you store them?  I store mine in a tub and then pass out as needed during whole group instruction. They are also used during small group and during independent math stations.

Where did I get my paint sticks? Originally, I asked. You can ask Walmart, Lowe's or Home Deport to donate your paint sticks or you can buy them separately which is what I do now since I use them for other projects.

What do you do with a rekenrek?

HERE is a great resource website with explanations and activities for using a rekenrek with your students.  

HERE is a FREE 2.0 Tool (as of this post) called the Number Rack for an online computer model for a rekenrek.

HERE is a FREE iPad App (as of this post) of a rekenrek. 

If you liked these ideas please consider following me on FACE BOOK, PINTEREST, or TEACHERS PAY TEACHERS.

Now here are the links to the other teachers participating in the Bright Ideas Linky.

Have fun!  If you have any comments or questions, please leave them at the end of the Linky Posts.

Thanks for stopping by!  The linky goes live at 9:00 a.m. CST on Saturday, October 18, 2014.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Math and Literacy DIY Manipulatives

Counting sticks can be used when teaching phonemic awareness skills and math skills too.  About 4 years ago, I was walking through a craft store looking for pony beads to make counting sticks.  Down the aisle I saw something that caught me eye. Biggie Beads!!!! Have you seen them?  We made them during one of my math sessions at a conference in Illinois on Wednesday, and I said I would share them on my blog as a reminder too.  

They are absolutely my favorite counting manipulative.  Hands down.  They are great for fine motor, slide easier, and line up to compare and contrast with friends.  Here are a few ways that I use them to teach and assess  in whole group, small group, and independent centers.

Disclosure:  Amazon links are included in this post.


I make a counting stick for each child.  These are similar to rekenreks, except they just have one row.  They are a great way to have your children working within 10.  Be sure and sign up by email at the top right corner of my blog, so you don't miss how I make rekenreks with paint sticks. I will be sharing that in my next post.

  1. Large craft stick
  2. 1 pipe cleaner
  3. Biggie Beads
  4. Choose 2 colors and use 5 each.
  5. Refer to picture above.
  6. Glue gun

I've shown 2 different samples to illustrate how they can be made.  You can drill a small hole in each end of the popsicle stick as above or use a glue gun to glue the pipe cleaner at the ends as in the picture below.  I've used the ones below for several years then talked my husband into drilling the holes in the ones above.  Either way works just fine.


The beads are divided into groups of five.  After lots of practice counting the beads one by one, children will transfer over into understanding that the first set is 5 and then they add on with the other.  

For example, in the picture above there are 5 orange beads and 1 blue bead representing the six on the card.  Subitizing is the ability for children to know the number (how many objects in a set) without counting.  These counting sticks give our children meaningful experiences that will help with subtilizing.

  • Slide the beads to the right to begin.
  • Slide the beads to the left to count.
  • Choose a number.
  • Slide one bead for each number counted.
  • This helps children with one-to-one correspondence.

Young children learn to recognize numerals.  Number sense is when they understand that a number represents a set of objects counted.  For example, the numeral 6 could represent 6 buttons counted. Use a deck of cards or write the numbers 1-10 on small pieces of paper.

  • Slide the beads to the right to begin.
  • Children draw a card.
  • Children say the numeral.
  • Children slide the number of beads to the left to match the numeral on the card.
  • Most children will count one-to-one as they represent the number.
  • After lots of opportunity to practice, they will understand that they can move 5 beads over at one time and then count on one more to get to 6.

  • Roll a die. If you roll a 6, roll again.
  • Slide the number of beads to the left to match the number on the dice.
  • Roll the die again. 
  • Slide the number of beads to the left.
  • What is the answer?

  • Slide the beads to the left.
  • Draw a card.
  • Side the number of beads to match the number on the card to the right.
  • What is the answer?  
  • For example. Child draws a 6. 
  • Child slides six beads to the left.  
  • 4 beads are remaining. 
  • The answer is 4.

I pass these out during whole group time when we are working on story problems.  It keeps all of the children engaged and gives them a hands-on tool for adding and subtracting.
  • Slide the beads to the right to begin an addition problem.
  • Slide the beads to the left to begin a subtraction problem.
  • Example:  Kathy had pumpkins. (Children slide 2 beads to the left.)
  • Josh had 4 pumpkins.  (Children slide 4 beads to the left.)
  • How many pumpkins did they have altogether? (Children count the total).
  • Use the sticks to check for understanding.  
  • Make all the sticks the same so you can quickly check to see if the children have the correct answer.
  • Adjust as needed.
  • Have the students turn and share their sticks to compare their answers.
  • Children can record their thinking drawing a line for the counting stick and  putting circles on the sticks to represent the beads. 
  • Children can color in their beads to match their story problem or to represent a number.


I make separate phonemic awareness sticks as show in the picture above.  I choose 5 different colors from the Biggie Beads and put them in the same order.  This way you can teach and quick assess too to check for understanding of the concepts being taught by looking at the color to match the count.


Gather objects to use for syllable counting.  I like to use shapes too as it is a bonus for working with shapes and counting syllables.

  • Slide the beads to the right.
  • Touch the object and say the word.
  • Children repeat the word and slide a bead for each syllable.
  • Example:  square, heart = 1 syllable - Children would slide the purple bead to the left showing one syllable.
  • Example:  circle, oval = 2 syllables - Children would slide the purple bead for the 1st syllable and then the pink bead for the 2nd syllable.
  • Example:  triangle, hexagon = 3 syllables - Children would slide the purple for the 1st syllable, the pink for the 2nd syllable, and the yellow for the 3rd syllable.

Uses these sticks to work on blending and segmenting phonemes.  I use concrete objects that have 3 phonemes to put on my teaching table or in a literacy tub.  You can use picture cards too.

  • Slide the beads to the right to begin.
  • Say the individual sounds of a CVC (consonant-vowel-consonant) word.
  • Children move a bead to the left for each sound.
  • Children blend the sounds together to make the word.
  • For example:  "c" move the purple bead, "a" move the pink bead, "t" move the yellow bead.
Here are some examples of CVC words:
  • bat, hat, mat, pat, sat
  • top, mop, hop
  • bug, rug, dug, hug
  • wet, vet, get
  • dip, hip, lip, sip
  • Slide the beads to the right to begin.
  • Pick an object or draw a card.
  • Name the object.
  • Children stretch out the word by moving one bead for each sound.
  • Example: cat = c-a-t
  • Using the picture above they would have moved the purple for the "c," the pink for the "a" and the yellow for the "t."
Perler BIGGIE Fun Fusion Fuse Bead Bucket-Assorted Colors

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Friday, October 10, 2014

Pumpkin Games Pumpkin Books

What can you get at the Dollar Tree for Halloween?  Orange loofahs and treat bag sacks for fun learning!  Loofahs (seen in the picture below) make perfect balls for kid's activities at school and home.  I keep several different colors on hand to play all kinds of learning games to teach letters, sounds, phonics, and math skills too.

You can cover the orange loop at the top with green masking tape to make it look like the stem on a pumpkin. Or you can color regular masking tape green with a marker.


These games can be played whole group, small group, or individually.  If playing individually, your child can toss, catch, and say instead of passing around the circle.  If you are playing with your child, you can pass it back and forth between you.

For whole group and small group, begin with passing the pumpkin.  When they have learned this procedure, you can teach the children how to gently toss the pumpkin to the next person to help work on gross motor skills while playing the games too.  The bath loofah is easy to catch because the children can grip it more easily.

1.  Pass the Pumpkin Letter Sounds - Pass around during circle time. Children say a word that begins with the letter p.

2.  Pass the Pumpkin Rhyming - Pass around during circle time.  Say a word.  First child says a word that rhymes with it and then passes the pumpkin to the next child.  Game continues until you run out of rhymes or you can choose a new word and keep going.  Words given can be nonsense or pretend words too as long as they rhyme.

3.  Pass the Pumpkin Phonemic Awareness Segmenting - Pass around during circle time.  Say a word.  Children segment the word that was said.  For example, the teacher or adult says cat.  The child would toss and catch the sounds "c" "a" "t".

4.  Pass the Pumpkin Phonemic Awareness Segmenting - Pass around during circle time.  Say a word.  Children will segment the word using the pumpkin as a prop.  Pumpkin on head for first sound, pumpkin on shoulder for middle sound, pumpkin on knee for last sound.  For example, the teacher or adult says cat:  Child puts pumpkin on head and makes the sound of "c." Child puts pumpkin on shoulder and says "a." Child puts pumpkin on knee and says "t."  Child puts the pumpkin in both hands and says the word - cat,  then passes the pumpkin to the next child. Each child can segment the same word all around the circle (practice, practice, repeat) or you can give each child a different word.  I usually give the same word as we are learning to segment.  This helps reinforce the skill.  Children can retain the word in their head if they see the picture of the word.  Use CVC words with picture clues to help children that are struggling with this activity.  CVC words are consonant-vowel-consonant words such as hat, cat, bat, pig, dog, top, mop, etc.

First This: CVC words - cat, bat, sat, hop, top, mop, pig, wig, dig, lip, dip, bug, rug, sun

Then This:  CCVC words (working on letter blends) - stop, clap, frog, flag, crab

And Then This:  CVCC words (HARDER to hear the CVCC) - bump, jump, tent, band, hand, camp, lamp

5.  Pass the Pumpkin Vocabulary - Pass around during circle time. Children say a word that is associated with fall.

6.  Pass the Pumpkin Vocabulary - Pass around during circle time. Children say a word that is associated with Halloween.

7.  Pass the Pumpkin Nonfiction Learning - Children name a fact or something they've learned about pumpkins.

8.  Toss the Pumpkin Counting - Have one pumpkin for every two players.  Have the children toss the pumpkin back and forth and count how many times they can keep it going (toss and catch).  You can set a predetermined amount of times they can start over again, give them a sand timer, or play music.

9.  Toss the Pumpkin Counting On - Students toss back and forth counting as above.  When they drop the pumpkin, they start off where they left off (counting on).  For example, they toss and catch to 9.  The next time they start with 10 and count up.

10. Toss the Pumpkin Skip Counting - Students toss back and forth counting as above except they count by 5's, 10's, or 2's.

11.  Toss the Pumpkin Greater Than, Less Than, Equal  - Students toss back and forth counting as above. Children can record each count on a piece of paper.  When the game is over, have them circle the largest number and underline the smallest number. If they write the numbers in a horizontal line, they can go back and put greater than, less than, and equal signs between the numbers.

12.  Pumpkin, Pumpkin Turn Around Rhyming and Language Fun(AKA - Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear Turn Around) Here are some rhymes to say using the pumpkin as a prop.  You can add to or take away lines.  The goal of this game is following directions and practicing rhyming words. The teacher/adult can say the first line, then the student says the next rhyming line.  Or they teacher/adult can say the rhymes leaving of the last word.  The children say the rhyming word at the end.

Pumpkin, pumpkin big and round.
Pumpkin, pumpkin touch the ground.
Pumpkin, pumpkin on a sprout.
Pumpkin, pumpkin punch it out.
Pumpkin, pumpkin on the vine.
Pumpkin, pumpkin on my spine.
Pumpkin, pumpkin in a patch.
Pumpkin, pumpkin toss and catch.
Pumpkin, pumpkin in a pie.
Pumpkin, pumpkin on my eye.
Pumpkin, pumpkin on my hair.
Pumpkin, pumpkin in the air.
Pumpkin, pumpkin on my nose.
Pumpkin, pumpkin on my toes.
Pumpkin, pumpkin on my hand.
Pumpkin, pumpkin I will stand.
Pumpkin, pumpkin you're so bumpy.
Pumpkin, pumpkin you make me jumpy.
Pumpkin, pumpkin turn around.
Pumpkin, pumpkin sit back down.


1.  Hot Pumpkin (AKA Hot Potato)
Turn on some Halloween or fall music.  Children pass the pumpkin around the circle.  Stop the music randomly.  Whoever is holding the pumpkin goes into the pumpkin patch (middle of the circle).  Game continues until one person wins.

2.  Toss the Pumpkin
Have one pumpkin for every two players.  Turn on music. Have the children toss the pumpkin back and forth and count how many times they can keep it going until the song is over.

3.  Toss and Catch
This game requires more room.  Divide children into pairs.  Have them face each other.  Have them toss and catch.  If they catch it without dropping, they take one step back.  If it drops, they toss again. Make a predetermine ending mark for when the game is over.  For example when you reach this line or you reach the wall.  Remind them of safety procedures as always.

4.  Pumpkin Basketball
Have the children use the pumpkin loofahs as basketballs to throw through small hoops or into baskets on the floor.


Purchase seasonal bags from the Dollar Tree.  They are packaged 10 to a bag and make great covers for books.
  • Cut the paper sack down the ride side of the bag.
  • Cut off the side as seen above.
  • Cut off the bottom of the bag.
  • Open up paper sack.
  • Fold in half.
  • Take 2-4 pieces of 8 1/2 x 11 copy paper.
  • Fold in half.
  • Place inside paper sack cover.
  • Staple book on the left side.
  • Your book is ready!

1.  Make a Pumpkin, Pumpkin What Do You See book modeled after Brown Bear, Brown Bear What Do You See by Bill Martin, Jr. and Eric Carle.

Pumpkin, pumpkin
What do you see?
I see a scarecrow looking at me.
Scarecrow, scarecrow
What do you see?
I see an owl looking at me.
Owl, owl
What do you see?
I see a bat looking at me.

Children can write the words and draw the pictures, or they can be wordless books or label books for younger children.  Children can still read their story being guided by the pictures.

2.  Trick-or-Treat Halloween Book
Children write a story about Halloween.

3.  Fall Sticker Book
Children use stickers to illustrate their stories.  Add background scenery to go with stickers.

Disclosure:  Amazon links included.

4.  All About Autumn/Fall.
Children write a story about the things you see during autumn.

5.  Life Cycle of a Pumpkin book
Read a book about the life cycle of a pumpkin.  Children make their own book about the life cycle of a pumpkin.

6.  Children write a story about topic of their choice.

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