Scratch Art Pumpkins


Pumpkin decorating with toddlers is interesting. They can’t really carve the pumpkin on their own so that’s out of the question, if you want them to participate more than just playing with the pumpkin guts.

I came across the idea to paint the pumpkins on Pinterest. One idea that stuck out to me is from Learn Play Imagine. She used home made puffy paints to paint jack-o-lantern faces on the pumpkins. This sparked my imagination and I decided to let my toddlers try scratch art on the pumpkins.

Normally when making your own scratch art you need to color a piece of paper with waxy material such as crayons or pastels. But since the pumpkin already has color to it and is already waxy it is unnecessary.

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  1. Any size pumpkin
  2. Black tempera paint
  3. Salt (optional, to give the pumpkin some texture)
  4. Corn holders (best for little hands) or a paper clip

Step 1

Allow your child to paint the pumpkin with black tempera paint mixed with salt. The ratio doesn’t matter too much as long as the paint is still spreadable. My daughter found a great idea to use one of the little cups as a stand in order to paint the bottom of the pumpkin.


Step 2

Once the black paint has dried you can get scratching! For older kids they can scratch out jack-o-lantern faces and for younger kids just let them do what they do best!  Collage2

I think this was a great alternative to carving pumpkins for my toddlers. What do you do with pumpkins for toddlers as an alternative to carving pumpkins? Leave a comment and let me know!

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  • Momsquestions1

    I absolutely love this idea! My 5 year old is finally old enough to help a little with the carving, but my 2 year old is definitely not. Both of my boys would love doing this scratch art though, plus it’s super cute!

    • SowSproutPlay

      I’m glad you like it! It was definitely a lot of fun for my toddlers and I can definitely seeing it be fun for years to come!

  • Emma Smith

    I love this idea. Such fun.

    • SowSproutPlay

      Thank you! It was fun!

  • Emma Craig

    This looks so fun and it’s great because it’s “like” carving, but not! Pinning!

    • SowSproutPlay

      Yes! It was a lot of fun. Heck! I liked scratching the face into my pumpkin! Thank you for pinning!

  • Ashley Moore

    What a cute idea, and no icky insides! Featured you at Mom’s Library!

    • SowSproutPlay

      Thank you! It was definitely nice to not have to cut open the pumpkin! 😀

  • Sugar Aunts

    I love this! We’re featuring your post on Share It Saturday this week over at Sugar Aunts. Thanks for linking up!

    • SowSproutPlay

      Thank you for featuring this idea!