5 Little Pumpkins Literacy and Math Activities for Preschoolers!

The story of the 5 Little Pumpkins is a Halloween classic preschoolers love. This Halloween, encourage literacy and math skills with fun Wikki Stix activities to accompany the book. The activities invite hands-on creation and play for preschoolers while learning, too. Gather Wikki Stix and a few simple supplies for playful learning fun with your own preschoolers.

Literacy and Math Activities for Preschoolers


If your preschoolers haven’t been introduced to the story of the Five Little Pumpkins by author-illustrator Dan Yaccarino, read the story through several times. The rhyme is simple and kids will catch on quickly.

Re-telling the story with Wikki Stix:

Encouraging preschoolers to re-tell favorite stories invites literacy and language skills to grow. With Wikki Stix, kids cement learning through hands-on creation.

Materials needed:

  • One free printable gate – print here.
  • Orange/Green/Brown Wikki Stix
  • Scissors

Directions:

  • Invite preschoolers to make 5 pumpkins from the orange Wikki Stix (kids can make orange balls or pinwheel shapes to represent their pumpkins).
  • If desired, kids can add green vines created from Wikki Stix or add a brown Wikki Stix stem to their pumpkins.
  • Print the gate (linked above) and laminate the page for durability (clear contact paper works well if laminating supplies are not readily available).
  • Preschoolers should place all 5 of the Wikki Stix created pumpkins on top of the printable gate.
  • As the story is read, preschoolers should remove 1 pumpkin from the gate and count the remaining pumpkins. It’s a great activity for encouraging subitizing skills and simple subtraction, but it also encourages listening skills as the story is read.
  • As preschoolers gain confidence with the story, they will begin re-telling the story using the gate and their Wikki Stix pumpkins. It’s fun to watch math and literacy skills grow as they practice and play.

Wikki Stix Pumpkin “Counting Sticks”:

To encourage basic counting with the numbers 1-5, use the five Wikki Stix pumpkins (created above) to make “pumpkin counting sticks” and practice counting numbers (1-5).

Materials needed:

  • 5 Additional Wikki Stix of any color (one per pumpkin craft)
  • Pony beads (15 total per child)

Directions:

  • Place one Wikki Stix behind each of the 5 created pumpkins and press firmly to adhere.
  • Place 15 pony beads in a small cup or container.
  • Invite preschoolers to thread pony beads on each of the Wikki Stix “pumpkin counting sticks” to correspond to the numbers 1-5 (see photo).
  • As kids gain confidence with counting, kids might also wish to create simple patterns with two or more colors of pony beads on the “pumpkin counting sticks.”

Using hands-on creation and counting will help preschoolers with basic one-to-one correspondence. When kids understand basic numbers relate to a specific quantity of items, math becomes intuitive for preschoolers.

Wikki Stix Created Numbers Activity:

Materials needed:

  • Wikki Stix
  • Pony Beads

Invite preschoolers to use Wikki Stix to create the numbers 1-5. For younger preschoolers, writing the numbers on index cards will be helpful as a visual.

Directions:

  • Read the story again and invite preschoolers to look for the created number that corresponds to the number of pumpkins in the book (example: 5 Little Pumpkins – locate the Wikki Stix created number 5).
  • After the story, encourage kids to place the corresponding number of pony beads on each of the created Wikki Stix numbers.

Retelling and Counting with Wikki Stix Created Pumpkins

Retelling and Counting with Wikki Stix Created Pumpkins

Basic Counting and Patterning Skills with the Numbers 1-5

Basic Counting and Patterning Skills with the Numbers 1-5

Threading Counting Beads onto Wikki Stix Created Numbers

Threading Counting Beads onto Wikki Stix Created Numbers

As preschoolers practice basic counting, storytelling, and re-telling with the 5 Little Pumpkins, early developing skills are encouraged through hands-on creation and play. For more ways to use Wikki Stix to play and learn this fall, please visit:

Fall STEM Challenge: Creating an Acorn Catapult

100 Ways to Play, Learn, and Create with Wikki Stix

Wikki Stix Created Owl Life Cycle for Kids

Wikki Stix Pumpkin Estimation Activity for Preschoolers

2017-10-16T20:36:02+00:00