Pumpkin Carving Stencil

How to Safely Carve a Pumpkin

Halloween is the season for pumpkin carving, and kids want to help their parents with everything. While pumpkin carving should be fun, it is very important that safety is taken into great consideration. Luckily, there are carving tools that are made especially for children, or you can use different techniques to let kids decorate pumpkins.

Pumpkin Carving Kits for Kids

As soon as Halloween is approaching, you will start to see pumpkin carving kits being sold in stores, including Halloween, grocery, and craft stores. Many of these kits include tools that are safe for kids to use due to their easy grip. What tools you get will depend on the kit you buy. Some will have a saw, scraper scoop, and poker, while others will include a crayon and light to put inside the pumpkin that is safer than a candle.

Children under 6 still need to be supervised when it comes to using these pumpkin carving tools. Furthermore, parents need to make a decision regarding whether their child, no matter what their age, are old enough to use the tools safely.

Decorating Pumpkins with Young Children

Young children generally want to do everything adults do. If your little one wants to be too involved with pumpkin carving, but you still want it to be a family activity, consider getting a pumpkin for older children or adults to carve, and small pumpkins for young children to decorate.

You will find foam stickers in different shapes that kids can stick to a pumpkin to make a jack-o-lantern. Kids in Pre-K will use their fine motor skills to peel the stickers, but parents can do this if it is too difficult for them.

Another option that is popular around Halloween is to let children paint pumpkins. Adults can also have a fun time decorating a pumpkin with details that are hard, if not impossible, to make through carving. Simply:

  • Buy acrylic paint in the colors you want.
  • Wash your pumpkin with water so dirt and dust is removed.
  • Paint a thin layer of sealer or varnish, although this step is not required.
  • Once everything is dry, paint your pumpkin however you like. Let children choose what face they want to make, or let them scribble if they choose.

Whatever your little artists decide to do, they will be proud with the result and will want to display it at the front door.

If you are worried about using paint with young children, give them washable markers and let them draw on the pumpkin. While this may not last as long as paint, kids won’t know the different and will enjoy the process.

 

 

Resources:

http://www.pumpkinmasters.com/safety-tips.asp

http://painting.about.com/od/gourdartpaintedgourds/ht/paint_pumpkin.htm

 

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About Sarra Jackson

Sarra has been freelance writing since 2006. Topics include custom home design, real estate, insurance, Halloween, how-to content, etc. Read more about Sarra on Google +.