SeDoMoCha Elementary students bring books to life with some great pumpkins

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DOVER-FOXCROFT — Students at SeDoMoCha Elementary got into the season by filling a “Storybook Pumpkin Patch” in the school library through a contest featuring pumpkins decorated to resemble a character from the pupils’ favorite books.

“These are ‘storybook pumpkins,’” Library Media Specialist Nicole Killam said on Thursday, Oct. 11 showing rows of bookshelves topped with nearly 100 student creations of varying shapes, sizes, and colors with some keeping the orange and white of the vegetables. “I did it through my kindergarteners through grade 4, I wanted to connect reading and literacy to home.”

“The only rules were the pumpkins had to be done at home and had to be based on a book,” Killam said, with her intention being that families would read the book and work on the storybook pumpkins together. She said contest forms went home during the last week of September to give two-plus weeks to work on the creations.

Killam said one project was put together after a family read E.B. White’s “Charlotte’s Web” and then made Wilbur.


Observer photo/Stuart Hedstrom
HARVEST TIME FOR STORYBOOK PUMPKINS — Students at SeDoMoCha Elementary in Dover-Foxcroft had the opportunity to take part in Library Media Specialist Nicole Killam’s “Storybook Pumpkin Patch” contest and nearly 100 pupils and their families made storybook pumpkins based on characters from favorite books. From left are kindergartener Jensen Frigon, fourth-grader Jadenne Frigon, third-grader Alden Sutherland, fourth-graders Audrey Sutherland and Julia Smith, third-graders Harloe Boulier and Kendall Killam, and second-grader Ella Annis.

“The Very Hungry Caterpillar,” by Eric Carle, storybook pumpkin is comprised of four small pumpkins linked together to create the body of the title character “They are all so different, I love them,” Killam said.

“I got way more than I thought, I have over 90,” she said, with the contest deadline being the end of the day on Friday. “There has a been a wide variety of pumpkins,” Killam said, with a few duplicate titles.

She said teachers and staff members would judge the storybook pumpkins after school. All students who entered will get a small prize and the top three will have their pumpkins recognized.

“They will get a coupon from me to the book fair, and (Kitchen Manager Katy Gregory) is making pumpkin whoopie pies,” Killam said about the prizes for the top three storybook pumpkins.

“The kids are so proud, the middle-schoolers have come in and said ‘we want to to do this,” Killam said. “It’s nice that families enjoyed it.”

She said one storybook pumpkin features Maine author Lynn Plourde’s “Pigs in the Mud in the Middle of the Rud.” Killam said she sent a photo of the pumpkin to Plourde, who then posted it online for the world to see.

“It’s amazing, I was not expecting this many,” Killam said. “I think I’m at 96 maybe.”

Fourth-grader Jadenne Frigon said her storybook pumpkin is the title character of “There was an Old Lady,” based on the nursery rhyme about the senior citizen swallowing a fly.

“First I glued hair on from yarn, then I painted the eyes,” Frigon said. She said her mother helped make the glasses out of wire.

Fourth-grader Audrey Sutherland made the title character from “Cherry the Cake Fairy” by Daisy Meadows and Georgie Ripper. Sutherland explained a pumpkin serves as Cherry’s body with a cardboard face glued to the top of the painted squash.

“I bought wings at the dollar store and these are real socks,” Sutherland said. “My mom painted them red and I painted the face,” she said.

Second-grader Ella Annis had one of several storybook pumpkins featuring the protagonist from the “Fancy Nancy” series by Jane O’Connor and Robin Preiss Glasser.

“First my mom drew a circle for the eye and I painted it white,” Annis said. “After it dried we painted the top of the eye part and then we did the mouth. We had some hot glue and we put all the hair on it and then we put the crown on it.

“We had some hot glue and we put the circle around the bottom and put pink string all the way around. Then we went to the store and bought some glasses.”

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