Not all pumpkin STEM activities have to be done indoors. For young kids, mixing movement with other parts of STEM learning helps them not only love STEM more, but also helps them remember the theory behind the activity much better than if they were sitting in a classroom with worksheets. That is why the STEAMsational team created this pumpkin drop STEM challenge for kids from preschool through first grade.
In this activity, students will learn how to carry pumpkins across distances using spoons, spatulas, and other tools to keep their pumpkins from falling to the ground and damaging the pumpkins.
It’s a great way to mix creative thinking, innovation, movement, and festive fun all in one!
In this practical exercise, students will transport pumpkins across various distances using tools like spoons, spatulas, and more.
This activity boosts students’ coordination and balance skills as they navigate the challenge of moving pumpkins without mishaps.
The Pumpkin Drop STEM Challenge for Early Learners
Through the pumpkin drop STEM activity, students will actively apply their problem-solving abilities and creativity.
Primary students will have the opportunity to brainstorm innovative strategies for the transportation of pumpkins and learn how to work as a team.
Table of Contents
Here is what you need to know before using this pumpkin drop STEM challenge in your own classroom!
STEM Discussion Topics for the Pumpkin Drop Challenge
Aside from learning about gravity and selecting the best tool for a task, there are many other STEM concepts that you can add to the pumpkin drop experiment to make it even more educational.
Have your students measure the height from which the pumpkins are dropped, the time it takes for them to fall, and the distance they travel.
Encourage your students to analyze the data and draw conclusions about gravity, acceleration, and the pumpkins’ trajectories.
If you are doing the pumpkin drop with older students, have them apply mathematical concepts like probability and statistics to predict where the pumpkins might land and create a scatterplot to analyze the results.
As an additional STEM challenge, you can have your students design and build containers or structures to protect the pumpkins during the drop. This introduces concepts of engineering, structural integrity, and material science.
Use the pumpkin drop STEM challenge to discuss concepts like gravitational acceleration, air resistance, and terminal velocity.
Discuss the potential and kinetic energy involved in the drop. Calculate the work done by gravity and understand how it converts potential energy into kinetic energy.
Discuss the biodegradability of pumpkins and how they can be repurposed after the drop, introducing concepts of sustainability and composting.
Allow your students to use technology to help record or analyze data. Allow students to use smartphones or other recording devices to record and analyze the pumpkin’s motion data during the drop.
Use our fall STEM challenge cards as further inspiration for your fall STEM activities!
STEM Teaching Resources
These teaching resources will make your STEM classroom more fun and rewarding for your students!
Supplies Needed for the Pumpkin Drop STEM Challenge
Here is what you will need to do your own pumpkin drop STEM activity with your students.
- Mini pumpkins
- Large spoons or other transportation devices
- Sticks or Cones—anything to make an obstacle course or starting line
- Recording equipment (optional)
- STEM journal or worksheet
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Plus, the convenience of online shopping saves you the time and hassle of traveling to physical stores, allowing you to focus on your project or teaching without the added stress of traditional shopping.
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Must-Have Supplies for the Classroom
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Fun Facts about the Pumpkin Drop Experiment
The pumkin drop stem challenge is a fantastic way to incorporate STEM concepts, making it a valuable learning experience for students.
The pumpkin drop STEM challenge can also promote friendly competition and collaboration, encouraging teamwork and problem-solving with student groups.
Some schools incorporate a pumpkin drop into their fall and Halloween celebrations and make it an annual activity for the whole school and community to experience.
Some pumpkin drop STEM challenges attempt to break records for the longest pumpkin drop, the most creative design, or other unique categories.
The outcome of each pumpkin drop can vary greatly, depending on factors like the pumpkin’s weight, design of protective structures, and the height of the drop.
A pumpkin drop is also easily adapted to suit different age groups and educational abilities, making it inclusive and accessible to a wide range of students.
STEM Shirts for Teachers
These STEM shirts are adorable and super fun to wear while teaching STEM or science.
More Pumpkin STEM Activities to Try
You may also like these other resources to make fall learning fun when you’re done with the pumpkin drop STEM challenge.
- Parts of a Pumpkin Density Column Experiment
- Easy Explosive Pumpkin Volcano Experiment
- Pumpkin Science Experiments
- Pumpkin Clock Experiment
Pumpkin Books for Kids
Here are some pumpkin science books that you can use alongside any pumpkin STEM activity in the classroom!
Pumpkin Drop Activity Lesson Plan
By combining your pumpkin drop activiy with STEM extensions, both students and teachers can enjoy a dynamic learning experience that fosters critical thinking, creativity, and a deeper understanding of fundamental STEM principles.
You can use this lesson plan as-is from a phone or tablet, or print out the lesson plan below for easy use in any learning environment!
Resources to Make Teaching STEM Easy and Fun!
STEM kits and hands-on materials, such as robotics kits or science experiment sets, can make teaching STEM more engaging for students.
Must-Have STEM Supplies for the Classroom
Find a list of our favorite STEM supplies for the classroom from our affiliate partners below!