Hey! It's Andrea from Always Kindergarten. I'm so glad you stopped by The Primary Punchbowl today. Teaching science wasn't really my "thing" in my first few years of teaching. But now I absolutely LOVE to teach science!
"I have no time," you say. "It's so much prep," you say.
Oh, but it's so much fun!
I teach thematically so my science and social studies are embedded in my themes. This gives me the time to sneak science in with whole group and small group activities. And yes, as with anything, there's always some prep to do. But it doesn't have to be a lot. Kids are curious creatures and love to explore. That's what science is all about!
This time of year, we are exploring pumpkins! I do a pumpkin theme over two weeks in October but it could easily be done in just one. The prep is minimal. All you need are a few different pumpkins (many grocery stores will donate the funnier looking pumpkins to teachers!), a tub of water, something to measure with (we use linker cubes), and some carving tools.
Investigating the outside of the pumpkin!
The students begin by talking about the pumpkin and what they notice. They discuss size, shape, color, texture, temperature, etc.
As all good scientists do, we record our observations and investigation results in our Pumpkin Journals.
Then we count the ribs (lines) on the outside of the pumpkin and measure how tall it is with linker cubes.
Then comes the real fun! Will the pumpkin sink or float?! We always make a prediction before testing it out.
We also learn about the life cycle of a pumpkin. I love these "Let's Read And Find Out" books for science topics.
Investigating the inside of the pumpkin!
Students love to get their hands on their learning. They can't wait to get inside the pumpkin to find out what's in there! Estimating the number of seeds is always a ton of fun. It's great for counting to 10 and skip counting. We use counting mats to help us keep track.
It's amazing just how many seeds can be inside a pumpkin!
Last, we work on labeling the parts we see.
After 2 weeks of pumpkin fun, we celebrate by roasting pumpkin seeds!
Want to have some pumpkin fun of your own? You can find all of the journal pages we used in this unit in my Teachers Pay Teachers store.
What are your favorite pumpkin activities?