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Oooo, Pumpkin Ghosts for Preschoolers

Updated on November 28, 2014

Example Pumpkin Ghosts on a glass door.

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How to Make Some Gentle Halloween Friends

Many people go all out decorating for Halloween. Throughout our Halloween night travels we've seen jaw-dropping, beautifully done yards and front steps and they were a delight. As my children have gotten older, we've also added our share of ghoulish surprises in our front yard.

But when our children were under 5, I made a conscious decision to have almost all our decorating for all the holidays inside and out be handmade; mostly by them. This was just our own family decision, of course every family is different. Being a family of Bahai's, we could celebrate all the holidays, if we wished. For example, for Thanksgiving, we made whole armies of hand turkeys and we'd cut out turkey shapes with a myriad of crazy-colored tail feathers as our centerpieces. For Halloween, we made paperplate witch faces and carved pumpkins.

One time, we were cutting out little paper pumpkins and ghosts to tape on the window. One of my preschooler daughters took glue, put them together and said, "Look Mommy, a pumpkin ghost!" I was absolutely stunned, back then I hadn't even heard of a pumpkin ghost and here she invented this all my herself!

Of course now I see online that many, many people invented pumpkin ghosts. Maybe it was a collective vibe people had, but pumpkin ghosts are everywhere.

Since I am no longer near preschoolers out where I live, I need to show you how to create pumpkin ghosts by myself. But, believe me, the real thing done by young ones surpasses in artistry anything I do here. Photos and story by author all rights reserved

How Do Pumpkin Ghosts Stack Up? - YES, they CAN stand up to the competition!

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Introducing Scissors to the Very Young

Safety First

For this activity, your young children need to have had some prior cutting experience with safety scissors.I had my girls cutting out shapes by two and a half years old. Yes, you can cut them out yourself and just have them decorate them and glue them together, but if they can do most of the cutting themselves, it's a much more satisfying display. "Mommy, I made this all by myself!"Have them use play scissors and model for them the cutting motion. The first experiences are just fun with cutting period, not trying to make shapes yet. Just cutting for the joy of cutting. I stood right behind them and was there the whole time.Eventually, over the course of a month, I would draw shapes and they could practice cutting them out. Many times they would cut a little blob and say it was a dog or a tree. I would say, "Oh, very nice!" Even if they were still not following the lines, I would encourage them near the lines but not force it. Eventually, they did it well enough that they could roughly cut out most basic shapes.

Preschooler-Invented Pumpkin Ghosts - My Adult Reenactment

Materials:

  • White and orange paper
  • Safety scissors
  • Gluestick or Elmer's Glue
  • Pencils
  • Crayons or Markers
  • Tape

The Pumpkin

1 You draw or have them draw with pencils a pumpkin shape on the orange paper.

2 Have them cut them out, they can just be circles or a real pumpkin shape. Help them with the stems if need be.

3 Flip them over so the pencil lines don’t show

Ghost Bottom

1 Model drawing and cutting out the ghost bottom.

2 Flip it over so any pencil lines don't show.

3 Glue them together, I personally like the ghost part behind the pumpkin part but it's up to you and your kids. Shown is the shape my daughter invented.

The End Result

1 Draw a face or leave them blank. We first made no faces on them, but when they got older, they added them.

2 Tape them to your windows, facing in or out, your choice. You might prefer putting a paper backing on them.

A fabulous decoration for Halloween!

Photos of the Process

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Drawing the pumpkin shapes with pencil.Separating and cutting out the pumpkins.Drawing the ghost bottoms.Ghost bottoms but out.All the pieces laid outBack glued on and ready for a face.A group with faces drawn on.Taped on the window or screen door (shown).
Drawing the pumpkin shapes with pencil.
Drawing the pumpkin shapes with pencil.
Separating and cutting out the pumpkins.
Separating and cutting out the pumpkins.
Drawing the ghost bottoms.
Drawing the ghost bottoms.
Ghost bottoms but out.
Ghost bottoms but out.
All the pieces laid out
All the pieces laid out
Back glued on and ready for a face.
Back glued on and ready for a face.
A group with faces drawn on.
A group with faces drawn on.
Taped on the window or screen door (shown).
Taped on the window or screen door (shown).

Vince is the Guy!

You will absolutely enjoy the Vince Guaraldi Trio for background music. As well as doing the music for all the early Charlie Brown specials, he also had other wonderful songs. We played his music all the time when I was growing up.

Now put on the Charlie Brown Halloween Special and carve out real pumpkins for family fun. Happy Halloween!

Only Ghostly Comments Allowed!

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    • Kim Milai profile image
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      Kim Milai 4 years ago

      @CharMarie: Thank you so much. I miss doing those things. I enjoy making articles like this. Looking forward to more of your articles!

    • CharMarie profile image

      CharMarie 4 years ago

      What a cute lens! I love doing crafts with my grand-daughters! We have so much fun! And I love Charlie Brown! :)