Looking for a simple Halloween activity for toddlers? This fine motor activity is the perfect DIY toy to keep toddler’s busy. Using a recycled carton, some construction paper, and pom pom balls, this feed the pumpkin activity comes to life quickly.
What is feed the pumpkin?
Any activity that I brand with “Feed the…” in front of is a sure fire hit for my kids.
Maybe since I’m always trying to get them to eat this is their chance to enact revenge but whatever it is, I love it and they love this “style” of activity.
We’ve fed snowman and turkeys so it’s no question that we obviously needed to feed the pumpkin too.
This activity style (where kids push pom pom balls into a small opening) is easy to make and rich with fine motor practice.
RELATED: Looking for more Halloween activities for toddlers? You’ve got to check out my list.
Is feed the pumpkin easy to make?
Um, you bet it is.
And for as fun as it is, it sure was easy to make.
I know this looks a bit like a classic “Pinterest” activity where the parent is making something for the kid and hoping they actually play with it.
I also know this Halloween activity sort of violates my “on the fly” rule since you have to spend a whole 35 seconds setting it up (ok = it’s more like 3 minutes but you get it), but I promise this is worth it.
It’s worth the small amount of effort you’ll need to get this activity up and running.
RELATED: Looking for some fun Fall ideas each day? Check out my Fall Bucket List FREE printable.
Busy Toddler is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Read more about these links in my disclosure policy.
- Recycled plastic container (sour cream and Parmesan cheese containers work best IMO)
- Razor blade
- Black marker
- Pom pom balls
- Glue stick
- Construction paper
These are pretty basic supplies even though it looks like a long list. I like to keep supplies as minimal as possible, but at the holidays, I do have special activity supplies I bring out (like on this list of Halloween supplies).
Step 1: Trace the lid of the container on orange paper. Cut it out and glue it to the lid.
Step 2: Draw a pumpkin face on the lid but cut out the mouth using the knife (obviously these are steps for an adult, not a child).
Tip: Make the opening for the mouth just big enough for the pom pom balls but not small enough that the balls need a little push to go into the container.
RELATED: If you’re into DIY fun, you might like my list of Halloween crafts for kids.
How kids play with this Halloween activity
I love an activity like this because my kids will play with it for the entire Halloween season. One prep, days of fun. The math on that is just fantastic.
I set this up for my toddler and he was instantly hooked.
It’s something he can be successful with.
It’s an activity he bring to the kitchen and do on the floor under more when he can’t be more than 3 foot away from my body.
Since my 3 year old is safe with pom pom balls, this is an activity that now lives on our fireplace. I can set it up and leave it out just like any other toy my kids have (except this is a Halloween homemade toy).
Make Feed the Pumpkin work for preschoolers
To add a little oomph for this activity, I had my 4-year-old rolling two dice and putting in that many pom poms.
This gave her a chance to practice numeration, counting, one to one correspondence, and early stages of addition.
What skills do kids learn here?
Although we don’t need to justify an activity by how much kids learn from it, it is fun to see just what skills can grow and be developed in a kids activity.
Even if that kids activity is just putting pom pom balls into an old Parmesan cheese container (wink).
Here’s what my toddler was working on:
- Fine motor skills
- Hand-eye coordination
- Crossing the mid line
- Imaginary play
- Story telling
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes. Very much so. Do not use pom pom balls with your child until they are old enough to be safe with them. Use excellent judgment and adult supervision.
This will vary kid to kid and differ even in a family. My youngest was pom pom safe around 2 years old. My daughter needed intense supervision past age 3.
Fun, yes. Important and critical to a child’s development? Absolutely not. You can do Halloween activities or not – the choice is yours and makes no difference.