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Hang a Jack-O'-Lantern Mobile



  • Arts & Humanities
    --Visual Arts


  • K-2
  • 3-5
  • 6-8
  • 9-12

Brief Description

Create unique pumpkin mobiles to hang from the ceiling.


Students will

  • follow directions.
  • create distinct and original works of art.


pumpkin, mobile, Halloween, fall, October, September, autumn, jack-o-lantern, following directions

Materials Needed

  • orange, green, brown, and black construction paper
  • thread or yarn
  • transparent or masking tape
  • glue
  • hole-puncher
  • Pumpkin mobile template

Lesson Plan

Printable version

Provide each student with two sheets (8-1/2- x 1-inches in size) of orange construction paper. Have them hold together the two sheets as they cut out the shape of the body (not the stem) of a pumpkin. They should end up with two identical pumpkin shapes.

Instruct students to keep the two orange pumpkin "bodies" together and make two cuts. Demonstrate the cuts for students. See Illustration 1. (You might describe the cuts as making a line similar to a smile of frown line drawn on a cartoon face or as the shape of a moon somewhere between a quarter moon and a half moon.) You might instruct younger students to draw light lines to mark the cuts before they do any cutting.

Students will be using the top and bottom sections they have cut; collect the center sections and add them to a construction paper scrap box.

Next, it is time for students to cut out two expressive eyes, a nose, and a mouth for their jack-o'-lantern mobiles. To do that, they will hold together two sheets of black paper and cut so they end up with two mouths, two noses, and two pairs of eyes that are exactly alike. If they want their mouths to have teeth, they will need to cut teeth out of the black paper. See Illustration 2 to see how these parts might look on a completed mobile.

You might talk with students about the triangle-shaped eyes and noses that many jack-o'-lanterns have. Will their pumpkin mobile have the traditional triangle-shaped eyes and nose, or will they give their jack-o'-lantern's eyes and nose different characteristics?

Then students can cut out a stem from green or brown construction paper. A single stem is all they will need.

Next, students should measure and cut pieces of thread or yarn. Cut two pieces that are 2-3 inches long, and one piece that is 6-8 inches long. (You might have already cut these pieces of thread or yarn for students.)

Printable version

Now it is time for students to begin putting together their jack-o'-lantern mobiles. Have them

  1. hold together the two tops sections of their orange pumpkins and tape or glue the stem to the inside of one of the top sections.
  2. tape the three pieces of thread/yarn to the same top section they just attached the stem to. The threads should be attached as close as possible to the bottom edge. The long piece of thread should be taped securely as close as possible to the middle of the bottom edge; each of the two short pieces should be taped about 2-3 inches to either side of the long thread. (Exact placement will depend on how wide the pumpkin is; the wider the pumpkin the farther apart the eyes should be taped. Let the threads/yarns hang from the bottom edge of the inside of the top section of the pumpkin.
  3. spread glue around the edges of the section the stem and threads are attached to. Place a few more dabs of glue randomly around the paper. Place the matching top section on top of the one they have glued. Press firmly to secure the two top sections together.
  4. extend the long piece of thread or yarn. Tape the dangling end of it to the inside of one of the bottom sections of the pumpkin. When it is securely in place, spread glue on the inside of the bottom piece that the thread has been taped to. Place the matching bottom section in place on top of the glued bottom. Press firmly to secure. The pumpkins' top sections (with a stem on top) and bottom sections held together by a single (long) piece of thread or yarn. The two shorter pieces of thread should be dangling.
  5. take one pair of matching eyes and tape the end of one of the short, dangling threads to the inside of one of the eyes. Spread glue around the edges of that eye, place the other eye on top of it, and press firmly. Repeat with the second eye and the second thread.
  6. center one of the nose pieces on the long thread that holds together the top and bottom sections of the pumpkin. Tape it on the inside, glue it, then place the matching nose piece on top and press firmly.
  7. with the jack-o'-lantern flat on a table or desk, center one of the mouth pieces under the long thread about an inch above where it connects with the bottom orange section of the pumpkin. Secure the mouth to the thread with a piece of tape, then spread glue around the edges of the mouth, lay the matching mouth piece on top of it, and press firmly.
  8. take a piece of transparent tape and fold it over the top of the stem. Use a hole-puncher to punch a hole through the tape. The tape will help prevent the stem from ripping when thread is strung through the hole to hang the completed jack-o'-lantern mobile from the ceiling.


Evaluate students using the following criteria: Did they follow directions? Are their pumpkins uniquely their own?

Lesson Plan Source

Education World

Submitted By

Gary Hopkins

National Standards

FINE ARTS: Visual Arts
NA-VA.K-4.1 Understanding and Applying Media, Techniques, and Processes
NA-VA.K-4.2 Using Knowledge of Structures and Functions
GRADES 5 - 8
NA-VA.5-8.1 Understanding and Applying Media, Techniques, and Processes
NA-VA.5-8.2 Using Knowledge of Structures and Functions
GRADES 9 - 12
NA-VA.9-12.1 Understanding and Applying Media, Techniques, and Processes
NA-VA.9-12.2 Using Knowledge of Structures and Functions

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