As warm spices and cool breezes fill the air, 3rd graders at Lorenzo De Zavala Elementary in Dallas have celebrated the harvest season by conducting a pumpkin research project. Ms. Hita, who teaches 3rd graders, wrote the following assignment: “With the Brighter Bites program you have been learning about the fruits and vegetables we receive on a weekly basis. For this reason, we have selected for you to research pumpkins.” Students had three weeks to investigate pumpkin history, scientific properties, and culinary — as well as decorate their own pumpkins.
On presentation day pumpkins of all varieties adorned the school’s hallways: from classic jack-o-lanterns to Pokémon pumpkins and from Super Ninja Turtles to bedazzled beauties. Students were excited to share what they learned about pumpkins, describing how Native Americans used pumpkin seeds for medicinal purposes, revealing that the largest pumpkin weighed over 2,000 pounds, and explaining that pumpkins are technically fruits thanks to their seeds. Of course, students were eager to discuss their favorite pumpkin treats – pumpkin pie, roasted pumpkin seeds, and of course, Brighter Bites’ Pumpkin Spice and Everything Nice Smoothie.