Lincoln pupils use pumpkin patch as learning tool

October 03, 2003|LIZ MAPLES

When the weeds died down in a field behind Kings Mountain Memorial Elementary School, the sixth-graders were filled with excitement. There lay a field of pumpkins.

"I got a big one, and it's heavy," said Sarah Stull, 11, as she swung a black trash bag holding her pick behind her shoulder.

They've used the patch in their math, science and art classes, but this is a business. Each pumpkin costs $3, and the money will be used to help supplement the cost of field trips. Anyone can buy a pumpkin in the school's front office.

On Thursday afternoon, a group went out to fill a Waynesburg order.

"Make sure it's not rotten," Mellanie Searcy, 13, said.

The rotten ones seem to be a source of excitement, though. Hunter Fish, 11, busied himself by showing his classmates insects on the flip side of a broken piece and revealed a mush he called, "pumpkin sauce." But he was proud of the size of the pumpkins. He put his foot on his Waynesburg order and said, "I declare this pumpkin for Lord Hunter."


Actually the brunt of the work took place in June when Dennis Miller worked the field and then he and Principal Ronnie Deatherage planted the patch.

Deatherage had a crop last year, but it didn't do so well. This time around, he and the students were pleased with the pumpkins.

"They're so big this time," Cody Hampton, 11, said.

Classes used the patch to estimate the crop's size. The field was divided into sections, and the kids used a count from some sections to make an educated guess on the number of all the pumpkins. The kids came up with 1,300.

They also have done soil samples in the field and learned about fertilizers. In art class, they've done a number of pumpkin crafts.

The patch is open during school hours. For more information, call (606) 365-7018.

Liz Maples can be reached at

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