Monday, 29 October 2012

Pumpkin Inquiry PART 1

Our pumpkin inquiry began like this :

We just started with a bunch of pumpkins and gourds of different shapes and sizes. We set them out with some magnifying glasses and some paper and writing tools in hopes that they would document what they were seeing.

Immediately we had children using the magnifying glasses and exclaiming "whoa-the pumpkins are HUGE!"

We also had kids wanting to paint a picture of the pumpkins.

As soon as one of them painted a pumpkin-several others followed.
The conversation also quickly turned to talk of how they could carve them.
One little girl came to me and said she would carve a happy face and I told her the production table had lots of materials that she could design that.
This is what she made:
I thought that it was a fantastic representation of what she wanted her jack-o-lantern to look like.
We also had plenty of opportunity to model vocabulary that can be used when exploring. "It feels like...." "I wonder if...."
The children had lots of conversation about the pumpkins and the inquiry has continued into this week. We picked one of the pumpkins to focus on-and we had them make guesses about how many lines were on the outside, and then we counted them. We had them make guesses about how many seeds are on the inside-and we will count them tomorrow when we carve.
We documented all of our guesses and findings on a chart-which we will display at the center of a Pumpkin Investigation Bulletin Board out in front of our classroom in the hallway!
We had brainstormed at the beginning of our inquiry to see what the kids wanted and thought we could do with our pumpkins. Many ideas were brought to the table including -paint them
                               -count them
                               -feel them
                               -carve them
                               -smell them
                               -make them a hat
Yes. You read that right. Make them a hat. So right off the bat-several hats were made for our pumpkins.
Today to build on this (I hoped!) I added a measuring tape to our table of pumpkins and gourds. We immediately had one little guy come on over and ask : "Is this a measuring rod?"
I explained it was a measuring tape- and he right away told me he wanted to measure the pumpkin from top to bottom! (YAY! SILENT CHEER!!!!) He measured 3 of the pumpkins and read the measuring tape correctly each time. I explained to him that he was measuring in centimetres but that there were other ways we could measure things too. Then another girl came up- and stated that we could measure AROUND the pumpkin as well. She walked away. He measured around the 3 pumpkins. He then pointed to each pumpkin and said "fattest...skinniest...and medium" LOVED being part of such a perfect teachable moment!
Tomorrow-we are carving the pumpkins! Today we provided little cards for each of the children to draw a picture of what they think we should carve our pumpkins like. About 10 of them participated in this and the consensus looks like they want a traditional jack-o-lantern!
I can't wait for them to feel the inside of the pumpkins. We have a couple of kids who are claiming to never have carved before-SO SO exciting!
I'll be back with follow up photos from tomorrows experience if I am still sane.
{We are experiencing the rain of Hurricane Sandy this week. 1 field trip postponed, and looking like 2 more in the works. (All outdoor trips-and the rain is intense.) }
All these indoor recesses are bound to make me batty I'm sure. Would love to hear from anyone with indoor recess suggestions for the kids! We have recess monitors which are responsible grade 8 students, who help out. (I love comments on my blog-but for those of you who don't follow it, I LOVE hearing from you in my facebook inbox! Your messages are always encouraging and full of great ideas!)

No comments:

Post a Comment