Tip #1: Consider Sensory Needs
Sometimes a student may not be comfortable touching the pumpkin guts so you can allow them to use gloves or even put some in a ziploc baggy to let them explore in a less overwhelming way. Sometimes I had students who would absolutely gag at the sight of the pumpkin guts. I allowed them to do something else during that time like painting pumpkins or using stickers. This activity is not worth that much distress!
Tip #2: Use Visual Supports
We started by watching a video or reading a story about carving a pumpkin to preview the activity. Then, students completed this sequencing activity from my Halloween Thematic Unit to provide us with a visual step-by-step guides with clear pictures and text to help students understand the carving process.
Tip #3: Allow Students to Design The Pumpkin
Give students the opportunity to express their creativity by designing their own pumpkin faces or patterns. My students with strong fine motor or drawing skills would draw their own pumpkin faces while my students who needed more support would use the Pick A Pumpkin activity from Starfall.com.
After all of the designs were completed, we would take a class vote on which one we wanted to use. We definitely had some unique (and adorable) finished products over the years!
Tip #4: Make Clean Up Easier
Use newspaper or a vinyl tablecloth to project your table (and maybe your floor!) from the pumpkin guts. They can stick and stain!
We also use sharpie to draw the face on the pumpkin and can easily remove any extra residue after carving with some acetone or hand sanitizer!
Tip #5: Take a class picture!
These are some of my most treasured classroom pictures because of all the memories they hold!
For more fun Halloween and fall activities for your special education classroom, check out my previous blog post: