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FTHS Child Development Classes Learn the Importance of Community during Annual Pumpkin Decorating Project

The students in Ms. Artis Jordan’s Child Development classes at Freehold Township High School learned the importance of community in a fun, creative way during the annual pumpkin decorating contest.

Some of the major concepts taught in the Child Development curriculum is each individual is unique, the development of an individual is influenced by his/her family and community, and the utilization of 21st-century skills and real-world experience can affect the occupations we chose.  Ms. Jordan explained that the pumpkin decorating contest allows students to create a decorated gourd of a favorite childhood character from a book, television show, or movie. Students are engaged and collaborating throughout the entire process. Working in groups, the students vote on which character to recreate, delegate responsibilities to each team member, construct a work plan, use critical thinking skills to problem solve and work as a team to get their project done. Their pumpkins are all unique and different. 

Ms. Jordan explains to students the importance of community in the development of a child referencing an old African proverb, "It takes a village to raise a child."  Community-based projects like a pumpkin decorating contest encourage cohesiveness within a community. As one of the advisers for Lead for Diversity (LFD), Ms. Jordan also looks for every opportunity to bring students together. Simply put, pumpkin decorating brings forth an opportunity for children of different backgrounds to feel included and accepted...along with a little healthy competition. Their peers vote on the finished projects selecting the cutest, scariest, funniest, and most unique.

Child Development 1 and 2 are highly interactive and engaging elective courses offered in the Freehold Regional High School District. Students get to reconnect with their “inner-child” through creative children’s games, collaborative activities, and innovative play. Students will participate in a cooperative learning environment through a plethora of hands-on tasks. Career exploration, resume building, and portfolio preparation are also included.

Decorated Pumpkins on Display

Decorated pumpkins on display

Decorated pumpkins on display