This is a festive and fun activity perfect for the fall season. It can be used for small group instruction, literacy centers, fall party stations, morning work, or extra practice. Students love hunting and picking the pumpkins in the pumpkin patch and you will love how it assesses students’ knowledge of letters and letter sounds.
Practice or Assess Letter Recognition & Listening Skills
The first set of pumpkin patch mats have individual letter mats for each letter of the alphabet both with QR codes and without (52 in all). I use the mats without QR codes during our small group time. I tell students that it is time to pick the pumpkins from the pumpkin patch but they each have a special job to only pick certain pumpkins that are ready to be harvested from the patch. Then I assign each student a letter and have them “pick” pumpkins by marking them with bingo dabbers (dot painters), dry erase markers, bingo chips, counters, crayons, etc. My students’ favorite is the bingo dabbers, but if you wish to save ink and paper you can place the mats in page protectors and use dry erase markers and re-use. Another option is to say words that begin with that letter and tell students to only pick pumpkins that have the correct beginning sound.
QR Codes – I use the letter mats with QR codes in our listening center and for fun around the room (SCOOT) activities. Students scan the QR codes (which they love!), listen to the audio directions which tell them which pumpkins to pick, and then “pick” the correct pumpkins.
Practice or Assess Letter Sounds / Beginning Sounds
The next set of pumpkin patch mats can be used for letter review. They are separated into letters A-M and N-Z (1 uppercase and 1 lowercase mat for each). Orally say a letter or point to a letter on your alphabet line and students mark the correct pumpkin in the pumpkin patch. You can also use these mats in conjunction with the pumpkin picture cards. Show a pumpkin picture card and students mark the pumpkin with the picture’s beginning sound. This can also be set up as a student-centered activity where the student chooses a pumpkin picture card and then marks the pumpkin on the mat with the picture’s beginning sound. Students can mark or “pick” pumpkins with bingo dabbers (dot painters), dry erase markers, bingo chips, counters, crayons, etc.
The third set practices letter sounds (beginning sounds). It contains an individual letter sound match in the pumpkin patch mat for each letter of the alphabet (26 in all). The pumpkins have pictures on them and students must “pick” the pumpkins with pictures beginning with the featured letter. Students “pick” pumpkins by marking them with bingo dabbers (dot painters), dry erase markers, bingo chips, counters, crayons, etc.
Students enjoy picking the pumpkins, especially when they get to use the bingo dabbers or dry erase markers! The mats can be placed in page protectors or laminated and used over and over again with the dry erase markers, bingo chips, counters.