Inside: Put together a pumpkin science table and invite your preschoolers to explore what’s inside. Scooping out the seeds is a fun fine motor and sensory activity!
Let’s explore pumpkins!
A favorite fall science activity is opening and exploring what’s inside a pumpkin.
After removing the top, toddlers and preschoolers can use scoops and tongs to remove what’s inside.
Pumpkins are a big part of our fall curriculum, and very meaningful to the children since they might have visited a local pumpkin stand or farm.
In fact, as soon as we set up our pumpkin theme, the children love to talk about the pumpkins that they brought home.
During this time we add pumpkins to many areas of our classroom, such as:
- Circle Time (Five Little Pumpkins Activity)
- Cooking (Pumpkin Muffins)
- Fine Motor (Hammering Tees Into Pumpkins)
- Art (Spin Art Pumpkins)
We read pumpkin books and sing pumpkin songs, too!
And, of course, we open a pumpkin and add it to our science table for some hands-on exploration.
Preschool Pumpkin Science Table
When setting up the preschool science table, you will need:
- A pumpkin
- Scoops and tongs
- Towel or wipes
We also like to prop a pumpkin science book on a stand as a visual. You could also display a pumpkin life cycle printable, such as this one from Itsy Bitsy Fun.
Exploring the Pumpkin
Place everything on the table.
As your preschoolers begin to explore what’s inside the pumpkin, talk about how it feels and smells.
Is it wet or dry?
Hand them scoops or tongs to begin removing what’s inside.
You can save the seeds for this fun counting activity!
Note: If the table seems a bit high for the children, preventing them from being able to look down into the pumpkin, you can place the pumpkin on the floor. We’ve done this with our 2 year olds and it’s worked really well.
Touching the insides of the pumpkin is a sensory experience, although some children might not like the texture. This is why we place a towel or wipes at the science table, so they can quickly wipe their hands.
Others might ditch the scoops and tongs, using their hands because they actually like the way it feels!
When more than one child is at the science table, conversations can take place as they explore what’s in side the pumpkin. This is a great way to work on communication skills!
(This is one of the many reasons why we prefer free-choice centers where we don’t limit how many children can be in each area.)
Make sure to add our Pumpkin Activity Pack to your classroom, too!
Spend a week (or more!) with pumpkins:
🍎 Fall Activity Plans 🍎
I’ve teamed up with other early childhood teachers and homeschoolers to put together these hands-on fall activity plans for toddlers and preschoolers!
Easy to follow activities that include modifications and adaptations to meet the needs of all learners.
Note: This is a digital product. That means when you make a purchase, you will be emailed a link to the activities.
For more information, click on the graphics below:
FREE CIRCLE TIME PLANNER!
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