Trying to teach your kids about Hawaii and the pineapple life cycle? Scroll to get awesome pineapple facts for kids with a coloring and writing book that showcases the different stages of the pineapple life cycle. Scroll down for more!
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Whether you are a worldschooling family or love taking your kids on cool trips, it can be nice to add in a few educational activities when you travel with kids.
I know a lot of families are looking for interesting homeschooling activities right now so I thought I’d share something about my favorite fruit: Pineapple!
Not only are they tasty, but I love that they are super trendy right now. And that saying “Be like a pineapple: stand tall and wear a crown” always makes me smile.
So, let’s dig into some awesome pineapple facts for kids!
Why Are Pineapples So Important in Hawaii?
We actually don’t know when pineapples first arrived in Hawaii from South America. Some say that the Europeans brought them on their trips to Hawaii as early as the 16th century.
They were a popular fruit to take on long boat rides and since the Polynesians were expert voyagers, they could have brought them at any point, too.
Pineapples have played a big part in Hawaii’s economy since the early 1900s. That’s when James Drummond Dole (of the famous Dole Plantation) started a pineapple cannery. By the 1930s, Hawaii was the world’s top producer of pineapple.
Because pineapple was planted and harvested by hand, this back-breaking work required a lot of workers. Just like the sugar cane plantation, the pineapple plantations advertised these jobs globally, and people from Japan, China, Korea, and the Philippines moved to Hawaii to work the fields.
These pineapple plantations and canneries employed a lot of workers and they paid better than the sugar plantations. That means they had an endless supply of people wanting to work for the pineapple industry.
By the 1960s, Hawaii produced more than 80% of the world’s canned pineapple!
During this time, there was an advertising campaign marketing Hawaiian-grown pineapples. They pitched Hawaii as the pineapple capital of the world and pineapples started appearing in lots of travel posters encouraging people to visit Hawaii.
Tourism is now the leading industry in Hawaii, and the pineapple industry has almost completely disappeared from Hawaii. It’s cheaper to produce pineapples in other countries.
Pineapple Facts for Kids: the Pineapple Life Cycle
1. Crown Planting
Unlike other tropical plants that grow from seeds, pineapples actually grow from replanting their crown (the green, spiking part at the top of the pineapple.)
Workers cut away the fruit so all that remains is the leafy fruit crown and the pineapple core. These are planted in moist soil and will start to root in 6-8 weeks.
2. Root Growth
In order for the pineapple to grow, it needs all-day sunshine in a place where temperatures range between 65-85 degrees Fahrenheit. The pineapple will develop a root system and will get nutrients and moisture from the soil.
3. Pineapple Flowers and Fruit
It can take 2-3 years before pineapples produce flowers. After flowering, the fruit will begin to form and it’s ready to pick when the scales on the pineapple turn from green to golden yellow.
While each pineapple plant can only flower and fruit one time, it produces offsets. These small plants grow off the main plant and can be cut and planted once workers have harvested the main pineapple plant.
These offsets will start the whole pineapple life cycle over again.
Pineapple Facts for Kids: Top Questions About Pineapples
How Long Does it Take to Grow a Pineapple?
It can take up to 3 years for pineapple plants to produce fruit.
How Many Pineapples Do You Get From One Plant?
Just one pineapple.
How Many Pineapple Varieties Exist?
There are 37 varieties, but the most popular are Abacaxi Pineapples because they are easiest to grow. In Hawaii, Kona Sugarloaf is a favorite because it’s extra sweet with low acidity.
Where do Pineapples Grow?
Currently, pineapples are commercially grown in Brazil, Thailand, Philippines, Costa Rica, and Hawaii. They mostly grown in Latin America and West African countries.
Are Pineapples Originally From Hawaii?
No, in fact, they can be traced back to South America, where they are called “ananas.”
Are There Still Pineapple Plantations in Hawaii?
Yes, the largest are Dole Plantation and Maui Gold Pineapple Company.
You can explore the Dole Plantation on Oahu if you want a hands on experience learning about pineapples in Hawaii. There’s also the Maui Tropical Plantation, which is a working farm. as well as private tours to smaller pineapple farms in Hawaii.
The last pineapple cannery on Hawaii closed in 2006 and now only fresh pineapples are exported.
Can You Grown Your Own Pineapple at Home?
You bet! All you need is a fresh pineapple. Cut off the crown and soak it in water. After a few weeks, roots will sprout and you can plant it in a container.
Are There Any Health Benefits to Eating Pineapple?
Absolutely! Pineapples are high in Vitamin C, enzymes, and antioxidants that help relieve Asthma, boost the immune system, reduce the risk of cancer, improve fertility, regulate blood pressure, and dissolve kidney stones.
How Can You Tell if a Pineapple is Ripe?
Smell the bottom. If it smells sweet, it’s good to eat!
Pineapple Facts for Kids: the Best Children’s Books about Pineapple
If you’d like to incorporate some books about pineapple into your Hawaii curriculum, these are some fun books to check out:
Do your kids have questions like: Where do Pineapples come from? Are Pineapples healthy? What vitamins do Pineapples have? This book answers them all!
Buy it on Amazon
Beautiful color photographs of your favorite fruit along with world maps showing the top five countries where each fruit is grown or exported. Simple words and sentences make this book suitable for the early reader in your family.
Buy it on Amazon
How to Make Dole Whip
And if you really want to go above and beyond while teaching your kids about pineapple, why not have them make Dole Whip? This popular Hawaiian ice cream only takes a few ingredients and can be ready in minutes.
Get my full Dole Whip recipe.
Pineapple Facts for Kids: a FREE Coloring Book
Now that you’ve learned a bit about this amazing tropical fruit, you can help your kids a bit with this awesome pineapple coloring and writing book.
Your kids can learn more about the pineapple life cycle while practicing writing. Plus, they can color the whole thing when they are done.
This is a fun airplane activity for kids or a great addition to homeschooling curriculum.