Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Pumpkin Fun

Pumpkins are everywhere! I just read that the world's largest pumpkin---announced last Sunday---is an 1820.5 pound monster grown by Chris Stevens of Minnesota. Every year almost, someone manages to grow a more enormous pumpkin. I can't imagine how they do that.

The pumpkins at storytime were a more moderate size. In fact, the one I brought from my garden probably only weighs a pound and a half. It's a lovely deep shade of orange though---looks just like a pumpkin is supposed to look.

Which reminds me---is it funny that Americans use "punkin" as a term of endearment? My Russian daughter-in-law thinks so. The first time she heard me call the baby that, she was very surprised. "Pumpkin! Why are you calling her a pumpkin?" I think she thought it was weird. But in France don't they use "mon petit chou" (my little cabbage) as a baby name? Pumpkin, cabbage---does anyone call their little one "brussels sprout" or "zucchini"?  Why not?

It was all  about pumpkins at storytime today. We read It's Pumpkin Time by Zoe Hall and Pumpkin Soup by Helen Cooper. On the board we had felt figures for the songs Did You Ever See a Pumpkin and Five Little Pumpkins.  

Here's how Did You Ever See a Pumpkin goes:

Did you ever see a pumpkin, a pumpkin, a pumpkin,
Did you ever see a pumpkin with no face at all?
With no eyes, and no nose, and no mouth and no teeth.
Did you ever see a pumpkin with no face at all?

So I made a jack-o-lantern,  jack-o-lantern, jack-o-lantern,
 So I made a jack-o-lantern and I gave him a face.
With two eyes, and one nose, and a big mouth with big teeth,
So I made a jack-o-lantern and I gave him a face.

To go along with this song I have a large felt pumpkin. It is made with a double layer of felt with a thin layer of batting in between. Then I stitched it vertically to create ribs.But it isn't necessary to get that fancy--any big felt or paper pumpkin shape will do. Cut-out eyes, nose and mouth are added as we sing.

Our craft was a laminated paper pumpkin that they can draw on using dry erase markers. I cut out the pumpkins and laminated most of them ahead of time, although if you were only making one, or a few, you could have your little assistant do some cutting and help you laminate.  

Give your child a dry erase marker and they can make jack-o-lantern faces over and over. Just wipe and draw again. I really like the idea of a reusable pumpkin face. Just be sure to not use a permanent marker, unless you want it to be permanent.

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