My kids are still a tad young to be carving their own pumpkins. We still carve them, but my husband and I do all of the actual carving. The poor kids want in on the action too, so we have come up with some fun ways for them to decorate pumpkins that don’t involve knives.
The first method involves stickers. Just let the kids go to town with stickers. Or if you are up to it, buy some big geometric stickers (or cut your own out of sticky paper). Let the kids make designs with the stickers on the pumpkin. My kids liked putting their initials on the pumpkins the best. The large letter stickers came from Hobby Lobby. After the stickers are thoroughly attached let your kids paint or marker the rest of the pumpkin. When they have colored the whole pumpkin remove the sticker and you are left with the shape of whatever your sticker was. In our case, letters, and lots of color.
While you have the paint out, you can absolutely let the kids just paint the pumpkin too. This is a great pumpkin decoration technique for very little kids. Fingers, finger paints, and pumpkins. Done.
For the slightly older kids, but still too young to be entrusted with a knife, try melting crayons onto your pumpkins. Remove the paper from some old crayons and lay them in whatever color pattern you choose. Grab the hair dryer and use its hottest setting to melt the crayons on the pumpkins. Once they liquefy, the crayons will melt beautifully and drip down the sides of the pumpkins. Remember not to touch the hot wax. Ouch! While the wax is still warm you can sprinkle on some glitter if you feel like your pumpkin needs a little more glam. And who doesn’t like a glam pumpkin?
If its you who want an alternative to carving a pumpkin, try hammering nails into the pumpkin in fun swirly patterns!