Grade Levels: 3-5, 6-8

*Click to open and customize your own copy of the Pumpkins Lesson Plan

This lesson accompanies the BrainPOP topic Pumpkins, and supports the standard of describing similarities and differences in the ways groups, societies, and cultures address similar human needs and concerns. Students demonstrate understanding through a variety of projects.


Display an image of a pumpkin, like this one:

Ask students:

  • What do pumpkins make you think about?
  • Why might pumpkins be important to some cultures? 


  • Read the description on the Pumpkins topic page.
  • Play the Movie, pausing to check for understanding. 
  • Assign Related Reading. Have students read one of the following articles: “In Depth” or “Eating and Drinking.” Partner them with someone who read a different article to share what they learned with each other.

Step 3: APPLY and ASSESS 

Assign Pumpkins Challenge and Quiz, prompting students to apply essential literacy skills while demonstrating what they learned about this topic.


Students express what they learned about pumpkins while practicing essential literacy skills with one or more of the following activities. Differentiate by assigning ones that meet individual student needs.

  • Make-a-Movie: Produce a documentary explaining how the significance of pumpkins in the Americas has evolved over time. 
  • Make-a-Map: Create a concept map comparing and contrasting the use of pumpkins in different time periods. 
  • Creative Coding: Code a museum exhibit where each artifact explains the role the pumpkin played during different time periods. 

More to Explore  

Related BrainPOP Topics: Deepen understanding of culture in the Americas with these topics: Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) Confederacy, Thanksgiving, Native American Traditions, and Agricultural Revolution

Teacher Support Resources:


Lesson Plan Common Core State Standards Alignments