Pumpkin Town

Harvest time is in full swing here in IN.  Corn and beans are the main crops.  But the family in the story grow a different produce:  pumpkins. Katie McKy creates a fun read aloud in Pumpkin Town.  Katie is a storyteller and has been an educator.  Pablo Bernasconi’s illustrations are definitely interesting.  He’s applied real pictures within the paintings.  With our diverse population, I found it interesting that he’s from Argentina and his website is written in Spanish and English.

Jose’ and his family always saved the best seeds for the next year’s crop.  The rest of the seeds were thrown away, well – tossed and caught by a blustery wind.  Each scene seems to end its little story when in fact the events create a domino effect.  The story takes you from the boys’ farm to the town below, where the pumpkin seeds have sprouted in everything – roofs, trees, gardens.  As they grown, the wonderful pumpkins turn the town into chaos.

Jose’ realizes that they created the problem, so the boys decide to help.  They silently harvest the pumpkins at night.  Because the towns people are so grateful, they send the boys home with watermelons.  The pumpkins are sold, and the towns people use the money to make a statue in honor of the brothers.  Of course they eat the watermelons, keeping the seeds…until a caught the seeds again.

Savorings for reading and in writing for Pumpkin Town:

  • Alliteration – The seeds slipped into straw roofs and settled
  • Colon – The Big Moons were bigger still:  too large for five boys to roll.
  • Cause and Effect – one event causes the next, creating more difficulties
  • Problem/ Solution – “It is our fault,” whispered Jose’.
  • Dependent Clauses – Katie McKy starts most of her paragraphs with a dependent clause
  • Bookend – the seeds from the watermelons are tossed and a wind catches them; students could write their own ending to the story.
  • Prediction – the clues from the story lead you to the next scene
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