Age Range: 3 to 6
This year we planted three pumpkin seeds but we didn’t realise how big pumpkin plants grow (luckily only one plant survived!). We did cut the plant back when it started to grow across our patio and threatened to strangle the tomatoes next to it but although our plant is big it doesn’t look like our pumpkins will be as big as Winnie’s Amazing Pumpkin!
The Story: Winnie the Witch loves vegetables and her favourite vegetable is pumpkin. However, it is difficult for Winnie to carry all her vegetables home from the market on her broomstick so she decides to grow her own. The vegetables grow very slowly so Winnie casts a spell and her vegetables become gigantic, especially the pumpkin which threatens to crush the house. When the giant pumpkin falls off the roof everything returns to its normal size, except the pumpkin. After Winnie has used the pumpkin in all her favourite recipes and given some away she is left with the empty shell. She turns the shell into a mode of transport that will help her carry all of her vegetables home from the market (I won’t give away the ending but it’s very original, highly amusing and involves flying!).
This is one of our favourite Winnie stories and is especially relevant for the pumpkin season and Halloween. Winnie is a great role model in this story as she is portrayed enthusiastically cooking and eating vegetables as well as creating her own vegetable garden. We can completely understand Winnie’s frustration with the caterpillars and snails who eat everything she tries to grow so we think it is hilarious when her spell also makes them larger. Wilbur is very amused by the giant vegetables until he comes face to face with an enormous caterpillar (his fur stands on end in shock and his facial expression is very funny!) but our favourites are the huge rabbits which end up being bigger than cows!
The text and the illustrations in Winnie’s Amazing Pumpkin are highly amusing. Winnie’s intentions are always good when she casts spells but they don’t always work out as they should which adds to the humour. In this story the familiar situations of shopping and gardening are given a magical twist and we love Winnie’s final spell which transforms the pumpkin into a………..!
Winnie the Witch has her own website with more information about books and activities.
Author: Valerie Thomas / Illustrator: Korky Paul
More autumn / fall books, learning activities and arts and crafts suggestions on Pinterest