To start, lay the newspaper on the ground and place your pumpkins on top and upside down (as best as you can). Paint the bottom of each pumpkin and let dry.
This game is played like Memory, so the next thing you will need to do, once the pumpkins are dry, is create matching pairs. For this, you simply need to think of some “You are …” statements that describe things you love and respect about your child(ren). For example:
• You are kind.
• You are funny.
• You are generous.
• You are loyal.
• You are forgiving.
Write each of these statements on two pumpkins (e.g., “You are kind” on two pumpkins). If you are playing with little ones who can’t read yet, you may consider painting different colors on the bottoms of the pumpkins so they can identify pairs by color (each pair should be the same color).
Finally, turn the pumpkins correct side up, mix them up, and set them out in a grid-like shape (just like in the game Memory). Now you’re ready to play!
What You’ll Need for Pumpkin Matchup:
• mini pumpkins (faux or real, 10–20 depending on number of players)
• any color acrylic craft paint
• cup of water
• permanent marker
• orange construction paper (optional)
• scissors (optional)
Before You Start Pumpkin Matchup:
For 1 to 2 children, you’ll need 10 to 12 mini pumpkins. For 3 to 4 children, you’ll need 12 to 16 mini pumpkins. For 5 or more children, you’ll need 20 or more pumpkins. Please note that these numbers are flexible! As you read the directions, feel free to make the game bigger by adding more pumpkins or smaller by using fewer. If you prefer, you may choose to cut pumpkin shapes out of orange construction paper rather than buying and painting the mini pumpkins.
Time to Play Pumpkin Matchup!
Invite your family to join you around the pumpkins. Explain to the group that this game is played just like Memory. Players will take turns turning over two pumpkins and reading the words written on the bottom out loud. If the pumpkins do not match, the player will flip them back over and the next player takes a turn. If the pumpkins do match, the player can keep the pumpkin pair by her side. If you are playing with a child who cannot read, be sure you or another adult or older sibling reads the statement out loud.
Once all the pumpkins have been matched up, the person with the most pairs wins!
The environment of Love & Respect is not just about teaching our children to be kind and loving but is our opportunity as parents and grandparents to show love and respect to our own children. Use the end of this game as an opportunity to affirm and love your children by going back through and reading the “You are…” statements again as a family. Expand upon each one for your children so they can hear exactly why you chose each statement for them. Then, of course, remind your children that God is the one who loved us first. He sent His one and only Son as a sacrifice for our sins. There is no greater love than the love of our Lord!