Number of players: 2 (more players can compete as teams)
Description: Each player has a one set of 6 different jack-o-lanterns. One player draws from the extra matching deck a card displaying one of the jack-o-lanterns. The players do not show each other their cards. The player asks questions about physical features of the face on their opponent’s card, e.g., Does your pumpkin have a triangle nose? Or, Is your pumpkin happy? All questions must be answerable with 'yes' or 'no'; What color is your pumpkin's stem? is not allowed. If the answer is 'no', the asker puts down all the pumpkins that answer no; if the answer is 'yes', the pumpkins with _______ stay up and those without _______ go down. The players keep asking questions to narrow down the choices; until he knows the opponent’s card.
Guess My Pumpkin Game can be used for a wide range of listening and language goals:
Clear speech: Producing accurate /s, z/ and/or other sounds, Guess My Pumpkin can be a great exercise in learning to self-monitor.
Is/Does Question forms:
When using Guess My Pumpkin for this purpose, I require the child to ask all questions using one of two forms:
Is your pumpkin_____?
Does your pumpkin have _____?
In addition, I require them to answer using full sentences, not a simple yes or no.
Using negative and contractions doesn’t ....
Using the proper use of has and have...
There are four typical forms for an answer:
Yes, my pumpkin has _____.
No, my pumpkin doesn’t have _____.
Yes, my pumpkin is _____.
No, my pumpkin is not _____.
Auditory Comprehension; Listening and Responding
Playing the game is a natural exercise in listening comprehension, as well as logical and deductive reasoning. For the game to work, both players must understand each other’s questions and respond accurately and truthfully. In addition, each player must understand how to determine which pumpkins get turned down and which remain up.
Question formation. Forming yes/no questions in English involves inverting the subject (e.g., your pumpkin) with either the main verb (e.g., is, as in Is your pumpkin scary?) or the auxiliary verb (e.g., does, as in Does your person have a green stem?)
Describing salient features; subjective vs. objective. If you have a child who often communicates by pointing or uses a lot of non-specific vocabulary like that, this, or thing, playing Guess My Pumpkin? can contribute to using more specific descriptions. If this is a difficult thing for your child, it is a good idea to look at the cards together beforehand and warm up by discussing the pumpkins’ distinguishing features. This offers an opportunity to distinguish between objective descriptions (hair color, eye color, nose shape, presence/absence of teeth, etc.) as opposed to more subjective descriptions, such as, scary, cool, angry, etc.