This week the kindergarteners learned all about pumpkins. We started with learning about their life cycle all the way from a seed to a big pumpkin. Next, it was time to look inside a pumpkin, but before we could do that we had to do a little measuring and guessing. We made some predictions about what our pumpkin would look like inside and how many seeds it might have. Finally, it was time to cut it open and clean it out. As we cleaned it, we had to separate the seeds so we could count them later. Our pumpkins had between 400 and 550 seeds. After counting all of the seeds, we got to roast and eat them as a special treat. We also made pumpkin pie pudding. We combined vanilla pudding, pumpkin pie filling, pumpkin spices, whipped topping, and vanilla graham crackers. MMMmmm.... it was good. Just like pumpkin pie! On Thursday, we talked about Jack-o-lanterns. After drawing a picture of a jack-o-lantern, we wrote descriptive words about it. Finally, we turned our pumpkins into little volcanoes with baking soda and vinegar.
No School- Teacher Workshop
Pumpkins, Pumpkins, Pumpkins… It is finally pumpkin week. We found 16 pumpkins in our classroom when we got there this morning.
In reading, we were introduced to a new letter and letter sound, Ii. After reviewing all of our letter sounds and letters, we sang our letter I song and completed our letter Ii sorting worksheet. We also compared two stories with the same name, Pumpkins. In each of the stories, we learned a few facts about pumpkins.
In math, we did a little exploration with a real pumpkin. We each got to pick a pumpkin. First, we drew a picture of what our pumpkin looks like on the outside and answer the question “How big is your pumpkin?” by circling the correct answer. Then we made some predictions. We had to answer each of the questions with our best guess.
How many lines does your pumpkin have?
How tall is your pumpkin? (using cubes)
How wide is your pumpkin? (using links)
Will your pumpkin sink or float?
How many seeds are in your pumpkin?
Then we had to answer each of the questions by completing the measuring and counting activity. We left two questions blank that we are going to complete later. Draw what the inside of your pumpkin looks like and How many seeds are in your pumpkin?
We also read the story, From Seed to Pumpkin. In this story, we learned all about the life cycle of the pumpkin. We talked about each of the stages in a pumpkins life from a tiny seed to a big pumpkin. We compared and contrasted the life cycle of the pumpkin to that of the apple. We found some similarities such as it turning from a flower into fruit and some differences such as pumpkins grow on vines and apples grow on trees. We used all of our new knowledge to complete a life cycle of a pumpkin activity. After coloring each of the pictures, we had to put them in order.
In the afternoon, we listened to the story, I’m Not Scared…I'm Prepared. Then we talked about it. We learned all about what to do if a wolf or intruder enters our school. We would follow our ALICE training. A- Alert, L-Lock Down, I-Inform, C-Counter, E- Evacuate First, we focused on E - evacuate. We talked how we would evacuate from our room and where we would go. Then we practiced it. We practiced going out the side door and meeting at our special spot (Father’s front steps). Then we worked on L - locked down. We located several different spots in our room where we can hide and still jump up if we need too. Once we get in our spot, we find something we can throw at the intruder if they get in our room.
Today, October 13th is the Feast of Our Lady of Fatima. In honor of the feast day, we gathered as a school for a living rosary. We found a time in-between the rain to gather on the black top to form a rosary. Each person represented 1 bead of the rosary. As we prayed, we passed a ball around so we knew which bead we were on. Our fifth grade buddies helped us say the prayer when it was our turn.
We started our day out with our pumpkins from yesterday. Ms. Torborg cut the tops off our pumpkins and we had to clean out the “guts” or pulp. When the inside of our pumpkin was cleaned, we separated the seeds from the pulp.
In reading, we reviewed all of our sight words and then we were introduced to two new sight words, a & an. Next we found our new word in our new emergent book, The Life Cycle of a Pumpkin. The first time we went through our story, we counted the number of words in each sentence. The second time we worked together to read the words. The third time we went through the story, we colored the pictures to match the words.
After lunch, we were back with our pumpkins. Yesterday we made some predictions about our pumpkins including how many seeds were in our pumpkin. Today we got to see if we were right. We had to count all of the seeds in our pumpkin. First, we read the story, How Many Seeds in a Pumpkin? In the story, they had three different size pumpkins. Everyone thought that the biggest pumpkin had the most seeds. We took a look at our pumpkins and tried to figure out which pumpkin had the most seeds.
Then it was time to count them. To make it a little easier, we used hundreds charts. Working with a partner, we had to fill the hundreds chart in by placing one seed in each square. Once the chart was filled, we could get another one. When all the seeds were in on a hundreds chart, Ms. Torborg helped us figure out how many we had. Our pumpkins had between 400 and 550 seeds in them!
At the end of our story, How many Seeds in a Pumpkin?, we found out that the smallest pumpkin had the most seeds. Mr. Tiffin’s class looked closely at their pumpkins. They noticed that the smallest one was a darker shade of orange. Plus it had more lines around it. Mr. Tiffin told them that was because it was on the vine the longest. We took a look at our pumpkins. We noticed that some were a darker shade of orange too. We counted the lines on two pumpkins that looked to be almost the same size. One had 19 lines and the other one had 26 lines. We compared the number of seeds and noticed the one with more lines had more seeds.
We started our afternoon with a pumpkin puzzle. After cutting apart the strips, we had to put the numbers in order to create a picture. Then we glued them on a sheet of paper and colored them. While we were working on our pictures, Ms. Torborg started a cooking project for us. As a treat, we roasted/toasted the pumpkins seeds we counted yesterday. Ms. Torborg really did the roasting in an electric fry pan. We got to try the pumpkin seeds before we went to computers. We divided the seeds into two groups. The first group was salted. The second group was cinnamon and sugar. More people liked the seeds cinnamon and sugar than the salt. We got to have seconds and even thirds if we wanted to.
In reading, we reviewed our letters and letter sounds. Then we watched a letter I video, added a few new words to our long and short i word lists, and completed our letter I worksheet. We also listened to the story, How Big Could your Pumpkin Grow? two times. The first time we listened for the meaning. We found out that pumpkins can grow really big. The second time, we tried to identify some of the “big” we didn’t know. We found that all of these words were describing words.
Next we listened to the story, Pumpkin Day! As we listened to the story, we able to determine the setting, characters, and details from the beginning, middle and end of the story. Then we worked on creating a new class book. This time our book was about a jack-o-lantern. First, we defined a jack-o-lantern as a carved pumpkin. Then we talked about all the different ways a carved pumpkin can look. Next, we drew and colored a picture of a jack-o-lantern on our paper. Our last step was to write 2 descriptive words about our jack-o-lantern.
We had a special treat for snack today, pumpkin pie pudding. We started by talking about pumpkins. We described the life cycle, identified the parts of the pumpkin we eat, and created a list of items we can make out of pumpkins. Finally it was time to start mixing. First, Ms. Torborg mix pumpkin (from a can) and pumpkin pie spices together. Then it was our turn. We had to put the pudding from our pudding cup in a cup and mix in a scoop of pumpkin mix. Next, we crushed up a graham cracker and sprinkled it on top. It is kind of like a crust. Finally, Ms. Torborg added a dollop of cool whip. No pumpkin pie is complete without whipped topping. Finally, it was time to eat. And mmmm... it was delicious!
In math, we were introduced to the place value blocks. They are just like the blocks we use for calendar every day. There were pieces or ones blocks and longs or tens blocks. Today we just used the pieces. For our first activity, Ms. Torborg would call out a number and we had to show that many ones pieces. Once we were good with that, Ms. Torborg introduced us to number cards. We started by putting the number cards in order. We had to make sure to start our numbers on the left side. Our next activity was to identify the number of pieces in a given group with a number card. Ms. Torborg put a group of pieces out and we had to show her the matching number card. Then we identified the number on the quick look card by finding the corresponding number card.
Yesterday was the Feast of Our Lady of Fatima. In honor of the feast day, we watched the video The Day the Sun Dance. We found out that the Feast of Our Lady of Fatima celebrates when Mary appeared to 3 children in a field. She told them to pray the rosary for those people who need help.
In reading, we worked on identifying the difference between letters and words. First, talked about the difference between a letter and a word. Then we watched a short video about it. Next Ms. Torborg held up a card and we had to decide if it was a letter or a word. Finally we completed a sorting worksheet. We had to sort the squares out into different letters or words.
We ended our pumpkin theme by turning our little pumpkins into volcanos. We put a spoonful of baking soda in our pumpkin along with a little bit of dish soap. Then using a small syringe we added vinegar to our pumpkin. We watched it bubble and fizz out the top. We had so much fun with it. We did it twice, once before library and once after.
We ended our day with the movie Spookly the square pumpkin.