Friday, October 3, 2014

Kidding Around: Pumpkin Painting!

It's October already, which in my library can only mean one thing: Pumpkin Painting!

We do pumpkin painting once a year as part of my monthly program for Grades K-2, Kidding Around. It is a fun program that takes relatively little preparation, so if you aren't already doing it at your library I highly recommend trying it.

Here are some tips and tricks:
1. Check out local vegetable stands to get deals on pumpkins. They are less expensive than stores and more likely to give you a discount for a good cause.
2. Give kids a pattern to plan out their pumpkin design before hand. Here is the one I used. It is a great way to encourage kids to think ahead.
3. Old adult sized t shirts make great paint smocks for kids. The donated stash we have at my library gets a great deal of use, and is definitely brought out at pumpkin painting time.
4. If possible, let kids keep their pumpkin at the library while it dries. I usually ask parents to come and pick up the next day. While pumpkins are waiting for pickup they make great decoration for the library.
5. I have kids draw a number to choose which order they pick their pumpkin. This seems to be a pretty fair way to determine who gets which one.
5. Sizewise, I usually limit this program to about 12 kids. This works for us, especially because I am the only librarian running the program. With more adult assistance you could definitely do it with a bigger group.

For your viewing pleasure, here are a few of the pictures I took at this program:

Our next Kidding Around will be an Elephant and Piggie Party! We will be celebrating the release of the latest book "Waiting Is Not Easy!" Any ideas you have for this or any other program are greatly appreciated.


  1. *shudder* I did painting pumpkins three years in a row. It got worse every year - the program I had it at didn't have registration and I got screamed at by parents when there wasn't a pumpkin left for their kids, I couldn't afford full-size pumpkins for the 80+ people who were coming so we used the little ones, but in order to buy the amount I needed I had to buy them early and they tended to get a bit...moldy. But honestly, the final straw was when a kid dropped his beautiful patriotic pumpkin and it rolled across the carpet, leaving a red white and blue stripe of paint. I still have occasional yearnings after this program, which was super popular but then I remember....

    1. Yikes! I wouldn't want to repeat that experience either. Registration is definitely necessary, even with the smaller groups I get around here.