Young students are embedding technology skills into daily classroom activities. Use these pumpkin-themed activities to reinforce concepts, reading/writing skills, science and technology skills!
Before your student can create a PowerPoint/Slides/Keynote presentation about pumpkins, your student first needs hands-on experiences with pumpkins and the various stages/parts of the pumpkin. Ideally, a student will have a school sponsored or family trip to a pumpkin patch, where the student can experience the pumpkins growing in the field. Often, preschool and kindergarten classes will carve a pumpkin in the classroom, providing the student with hands-on opportunities to feel the inside of the pumpkin and to touch the pumkin seeds. Each student may plant a pumpkin seed in a paper cup full of dirt and track the progress of the pumpkin sprout. All of these things correspond with a week- or month-long pumpkin-theme!
Paper Plate Life Cycle Activity
Following the hands-on activities with real pumpkins, students with visual impairments should have exposure to tactile representations of pumpkin-related items. Attached is a document for a tactile graphics machine with the seed, flower, vines and pumpkin graphics. You can also use the images as a stencil to create your own pumpkin materials using various textures.
Download the Pumpkin Life Cycle tactile graphics machine images here. Note: After the life cycle images have been run through the tactile graphics machine, cut the images into individual squares.
This activity is a 4-step pumpkin life cycle: Pumpkin seed, pumpkin flower, pumpkin vines/green pumpkin, and orange pumpkin. If desired, you can make this a 6-step pumpkin life cycle: seed, sprout, vine, flower, green pumpkin, orange pumpkin.
Ask the student to explore each tactile graphic and name what it is. Have the student sequence the tactile graphics on the desk top.
The word "cycle" means "events that repeat in the same order". Ask the students to adhere their images to the paper plate starting with the first image at the top of the plate and working clockwise around the plate. If desired, add braille labels (1-4 or 1-6) to the plate to help the student know where to place each image.
Creating a Presentation (Tech Skill)
Even young students can create simple slide decks! For young students, the decks are often 5-10 slides long and teachers may provide ideas for each deck. (See PowerPoint Lesson Plan for Elementary Students post) If your student is doing the 4-step life cycle activity, the deck might be these 5 slides:
Slide 1: Title, author, and date
Slide 2: First step in the Pumpkin Life Cycle
Slide 3: Second step in the Pumpkin Life Cycle
Slide 4: Third step in the Pumpkin Life Cycle
Slide 5: Fourth step in the Pumpkin Life Cycle
Slide 6: Sentence about pumpkins
(Examples: What I like best about pumpkins. What I am going to do with my pumpkin. What my jack-o-latern looks like. etc.)
For detailed information see the post on How to Create a Keynote Presentation with VoiceOver. If your student is using a different device, check out this post on Presentations: PowerPoints, Google Slides, Keynotes (which includes additional links to creating presentations using different devices).
Tech standards indicate that students should be able to add images to their slide deck. For students who are visually impaired (and for peers in a class with a student who is visually impaired) students should learn how to add age-appropriate image descriptions (also known as alt text descriptions). A student who relies on a screen reader should know how to add image descriptions to their photos, so that the student can independently select the desired photo from his/her photo library. (See Adding Image Descriptions to iOS Photos post).
For young or beginner students, here are pumpkin images that your student can use for his/her slide deck.
Modification: If your student is ready to create his/her own presentation, create a presentation (book) about the pumpkin life cycle and have your student "read" the book. You can record your student talking about the pumpkin life cycle or use your student's words when creating the book. The activity can be expanded by taking pictures of the class activities and adding that to the presentation to make it an Experience Book. For more information, see Accessing Keynote Presentations with VoiceOver.