Saturday, November 16, 2013

Pumpkins-The Investigaion

The kids have been begging me to start exploring pumpkins, because my husband surprised us by buying a variety of pumpkins to decorate our classroom this fall. During our Exploration time, some started observing and documenting on their own! 

Some noticed patterns on the pumpkins, or made patterns with pumpkins.  Some documented what they looked like as they were displayed. They made a connection to our color inquiry by pointing out the different shades of orange!  During station time, they measured pumpkins by weight and height and documented what they noticed. 

We watched and read many videos and books about pumpkins. We all explored the outside of the pumpkins, noticed the different parts and documented what we noticed by drawing a picture, labeling the parts, and writing what we noticed about the outside of their pumpkins.  They also noticed that pumpkins can be different colors such as red, blue, green, yellow, orange and striped!  

Next, we explored the inside of the pumpkin. They loved to feel the insides. They documented the inside like we did the outside, labeling the parts and writing something they noticed. 

They are taking their documentation very seriously! Some making sure they used the exact colors to match the pumpkins!

The kids wanted to cut open the biggest pumpkin to see how many seeds it had in it. Most of the kids felt that the biggest pumpkin would have the most seeds. We picked out a medium sized and a small sized pumpkin also and had the kids make predictions about which would have the most seeds and why they thought so.  We cut them open and many were happy to dig the seeds out!

We grouped the seeds from each pumpkin into groups of ten. 

Each table helped by counting their seeds by 10's.  Every time we got to 100, we made a tally.  We looked at the tallies and figured out how many groups of 100 we had and added the extra. They were surprised by the results! The biggest pumpkin did not have the most seeds! The medium pumpkin had 570, the big one had 490, and the small one had 460.  We recorded the tallies and numbers, but I did not get a photo!

They came to the conclusion that the size of the pumpkin had no relation to the number of seeds! They also noticed that the size of the pumpkin did reflect the size of the seeds inside.  The biggest pumpkin had the biggest seeds, the smallest one had the smallest seeds, etc!  They are some very observant kids!

Next week, we will finish our pumpkin investigation and work on a couple projects. One will be the life cycle of the pumpkin.  Another thing they have learned about pumpkins is that you can make many different things to eat out of pumpkins!  In class, we will be making pumpkin pie and....believe it or not...pumpkin soup!  They want to make the soup more than anything else! I will post about all of this next week!

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