Pumpkin Time Bomb – Data Collection

I was watching Jimmy Fallon on the Tonight Show last week and saw this…

After wanting to try it myself (I did on the weekend with my kids – messy) I had a “wonder question.” I wondered would it be possible to predict accurately the number of bands to destroy any pumpkin?

After a few tweets:


I decided to gather some data…..maybe other math teachers out there would blow up a pumpkin and send me the data. I put together a form/activity for people to fill out. See the form below.

So….when the data files in I will send out a spreadsheet so teachers can analyze the data with their class. Hopefully we will see some relationships….and be able to predict how many rubber bands to blow up pumpkins next Halloween!

Here are some videos so far….


Please contribute to the data

Fill out the form


Kyle Pearce (@mathletepearce) has written on his blog about this activity. Check it out!

Here is the open spreadsheet with all entries so far

Here is a desmos file showing some relationships (or non-relationships)

This is my class and our result —- 407 bands


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One thought on “Pumpkin Time Bomb – Data Collection

  1. Steffanie Rumsey

    This is a great activity! I am going to do it with MDM 4U class next week. I was looking at the results and became curious about how the diameter to height ratio would relate to the number of bands. When looking at number of rubber bands vs. diameter/height I got a correlation coefficient of -0.45.

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