Pumpkins are popping up all over the place here! I love how the pumpkin theme lasts the whole fall season, from harvest to Halloween to Thanksgiving–we study pumpkins, make Jack O’ Lanterns, pumpkin pies, roasted pumpkin seeds, and, of course, pumpkin crafts. We also enjoy reading picture books about pumpkins. Here are some of our favorite pumpkin books for kids:
Plumply, Dumply Pumpkin, by Mary Serfozo: Toddlers will love the language play and the adorable cartoon-ish illustrations and older children will learn from the more advanced vocabulary: “Peter’s looking for a pumpkin, a perfect plumply, dumply pumpkin. Not a lumpy, bumpy pumpkin. Not a stumpy, grumpy pumpkin, but a sunny, sumptuous pumpkin.”
Five Little Pumpkins, illustrated by Dan Yaccarino: The classic finger play in an illustrated boardbook. Perfect for toddlers!
Pumpkin Jack by Will Hubbell: A lovely introduction to the life-cycle of a pumpkin for ages 3-6+. When a young boy needs to get rid of his rotting pumpkin, he places it in his family’s garden. By the time the next Halloween comes around, he has a delightful surprise waiting for him. The lush illustrations will captivate toddlers through young elementary students and preschoolers on up will learn about pumpkins, from seed to sprout, to flower, to pumpkin, to jack o’ lantern.
Pumpkin Moonshine by Tasha Tudor: My children find this classic tale, for ages 4-8 but really suitable even for older toddlers, absolutely hysterical. Sweet but resourceful and adventurous little Sylvie visits her grandparents’ farm and decides to select a pumpkin for a “pumpkin moonshine” (a jack o’ lantern for us modern readers). When she tries to roll the large gourd down the hill, it gets away from her, causing all sorts of mischief. When the pumpkin finally comes to rest, she shares a nice bonding moment with her grandfather, carving the face and then spooking the neighbors with their creation. The sweet original illustrations hearken back to a time of simple childhood pleasures.
How Many Seeds in a Pumpkin? by Margaret McNamara: This book has a fun lesson about mathematics for ages 4-8, plus some scientific information about pumpkins, all wrapped up in a sweet story about how sometimes there is a lot inside a small package. A teacher asks his class to guess how many seeds are in a small, medium, and large pumpkin. The answer surprises the class and shows them that you cannot always judge by appearances.