Arizona Science Center is going pumpkin on Monday, October 14, 2013 with Pumpkin Patch Science!

To help you gear up, we have some fun pumpkin facts as well as entertaining educational activities that kids will love!

What you might not know about pumpkins:

-Pumpkins are actually fruits not vegetables

-Pumpkins are loaded with important antioxidants including beta-carotene. When we eat pumpkins, beta-carotene is converted into Vitamin A in the body.

-The name “pumpkin” originates from the Greek word for large melon, “pepon.”

-Pumpkin pie has evolved from when colonists would cut off the top of the pumpkin, remove the seeds and fill it with milk, spices and honey and then bake in hot ashes.

Learning with Pumpkins:

Help kids learn through math and science by incorporating this beloved fruit into educational and fun projects:

-You can have kids measure the circumference and weigh pumpkins, then let them hypothesize over the relationship between weight and circumference.

-Leave a pumpkin outside and have kids keep a journal of the changes of the pumpkin throughout the month. What is causing the pumpkin to change and why?

-Have kids experiment with different pumpkin preservatives to see which may help keep carved jack-o-lanterns from rotting (i.e. Vaseline, hair spray, white glue, etc.). Create a hypothesis and keep a journal.

-Have kids guess how many pumpkin seeds are in various sized pumpkins, then open them up and count them.

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