Pumpkin STEM Structures

The kids loved using our STEM challenge cards to build toothpick and playdough structures a couple months ago so I was eager to pull them out again. This time though, I wanted to add in a fun fall-themed twist, so I swapped out our playdough for a bag of candy pumpkins! The result was every bit as engaging.


Getting Ready

To prep, I printed the challenge cards (available here) on cardstock to give them extra durability. Then I slid them through the laminator to make them reusable.

I grabbed our bag of candy pumpkins and a box of toothpicks and we were all set.

Pumpkin STEM Structures

Middle Brother (age 5) was eager to jump in so he grabbed a card from the stack and started building his first shape with toothpicks and candies.

The pumpkins were heartier than the playdough we used last time so it took him a minute or two to get the hang of pushing hard enough to stick the toothpick into the candy.


Each time he finished a shape, we worked together to count the number of sides and vertices and then added them to our record sheet.


When he finished the stack of 2D shapes, he grabbed a couple of 3D shapes to try too.



They were just the right amount of challenge – not too easy or too hard.

Download Your Set

Start building your batch of pumpkin STEM structures by grabbing our challenge cards here! (You’ll be able to swap the pumpkins out for marshmallow “snowballs” in winter and colorful jellybeans in spring.)

Toothpick STEM Structures for Kids


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Hi, I’m Malia.

I LOVE helping Pre-K, Kindergarten and First Grade teachers save time, stay inspired and give EVERY student bigger results. I’m so glad you’re here!

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