1-2-3 Come Play Some Pumpkin Games With Me!
Games are a wonderful way for students to practice important life skills. They are also a quick & easy way to grab and hold children's interest, while they review and reinforce a variety of standards. One of my little ones summed it up: "We didn't even know we was learnin' cuz we was havin' so much fun!"
Because subitizing (being able to "know" how many there are, without counting) is extremely important; playing with dominoes and dice, are a great way to help students recognize these groupings at a glance. Before too long, I could flash 6 dots (in the pattern on a dice/domino) and my students would call out the number 6, without having to stop and count the dots.
Keeping this in mind, I designed 6 pumpkin-themed dice games + a listening and following direction activity, that will help review ordinal numbers. They are all in one Pumpkin Games packet. To view/download it, click on the link. Because the rules are pretty much the same, students feel empowered, as they know what to do, and can get down to business, and you aren't using up valuable minutes explaining things for the umpteenth time.
Because the apple basket counting game, was a popular download, I decided to revisit that concept using pumpkins. Print off the farmer's wagon on brown construction paper, laminate and trim. Do the same thing with the pumpkin tile master. Have each child take 20 pumpkin tiles, (or to expedite things, have 20 pre-counted and put in Snack Baggies. After children have played the game, to make sure that they have 20 pumpkins, have students count them one at a time into their bag.) This is great counting practice for little ones, and also ensures that you don't have incomplete games, because pumpkins fell on the floor.
Children choose a partner and share the wagon. The object of the game is to get all of your pumpkins into the wagon, by taking turns rolling the dice. Whatever number a child rolls, is how many pumpkins they pick up from their pile and place in the wagon. You can make the game more difficult, by having students roll an exact number towards the end of the game. i.e. if they have only 1 pumpkin left, they need to roll a one.
In the game "Roll and Color," children roll a dice. Whatever number they roll, is the matching numbered section on their pumpkin, that they color. The first child with a completly colored-in pumpkin is the winner.
"Roll and Draw" works with the same rules, only children draw a shape on their pumpkin to make a Jack-O-Lantern. This is a great opportunity to review a square, triangle, circle and rectangle, and possibly introduce the crescent shape as well.
Because 5 Little Pumpkins Sitting On a Gate, is such a popular rhyme/story in October, I thought it would be fun to follow it up with a game. To conserve paper, you can print, laminate and trim the gates. If copying is not an issue for your school, it's nice if each child can have their own "gate" so they can continue to practice at home.
Run off the pumpkin master. Students color and cut out their pumpkins and place them on the gate. When you are explaining the game, you have a great opportunity to review ordinal numbers as well. Children take turns rolling a dice with their partner. Whatever number they roll, they take the matching numbered pumpkin off the gate and have it go "rolling into the night..." The first child who gets all of their pumpkins off the gate is the winner.
Pumpkins in a Row on a Roll is similar. Children color the numbered pumpkin that matches the number that they roll. I also made an ordinal number activity with this same template. This is wonderful practice for listening and following directions too, as the teacher reads what (s)he wants students to do.
Finally, children trace the numbers and color their pumpkins as they take turns rolling the dice in Pumpkins On A Roll . Simply run off the template, trim and give each student a strip of pumpkins. Click on the link to view/download the Pumpkin Games packet.
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"A college degree and a teaching certificate, may define a person as a teacher, but it takes hard word and dedication to truly be one." -Evan Esar