How to Make Pumpkin Brush Bots for Halloween

I don’t know about you, but moving parts make play and learning a lot more fun for my kiddo.  Carving pumpkins is super fun, but making a pumpkin robot is even better.  Enter these Halloween Pumpkin Brush Bots.  They’re a fun and festive way to introduce circuits and motors to your kiddos. Oh and they’re really silly to watch twirl around the table…  This post contains affiliate links.

These fun and educational Halloween pumpkin brush bots are perfect for your STEM / STEAM lessons in class (or at home!) this Halloween.

Halloween Pumpkin Brush Bots Supplies Needed (1 set per pumpkin)


SAFETY NOTE:  Coin cell batteries are extremely hazardous if swallowed.  Please keep away from children who put non-food items in their mouth.

  1. Cut the head off an angled toothbrush by pinching the neck in a pair of wire cutters and bending back and forth until it snaps.
  2. Cut a hole just big enough for your toothbrush head in the bottom of the styrofoam pumpkin.  Then dig out enough space so that the motor won’t hit the styrofoam and stop moving.  This may take a bit of trial and error. For little kids, you might want to make this a grown up job since a sharp knife makes it a lot easier.


  1. Decorate your pumpkin.  Googly eyes and black foam are easy add-ons and a glue gun makes it super quick.


  1. Tape motor to toothbrush head with masking tape.  Play around with motor placement and direction as these make a difference in how the brush bot moves around. Note: I ended up buying my motors because the wires kept breaking on the ones you can get in cheap vibrating toothbrushes.
  2. Take the two motor wires and tape each wire to a side of the battery using masking tape. I like masking tape versus electrical tape because it sticks a bit better as you pop the motor into the pumpkin.  Motor doesn’t turn on?  Switch sides…  Then slide one wire out until you are ready to play with the pumpkin.


  1. Now start up your motor by taping both wires to the battery.  Then insert into the bottom of the pumpkin and let it motor around.  It might take a bit of trial and error to get the brush placement just right, but this develops valuable engineering skills in your kiddos.  There’s no success without failure :)


You have to watch them run around in this video.  They’re so cute!

More Halloween STEAM Fun

Looking for more Halloween fun?  Check out these other Left Brain Craft Brain posts:

Plus, today a bunch of my blogging buddies got together to do some fun Halloween STEAM projects.  Click on through to see some of the spooky, trick-or-treat, always hands-on fun.

Halloween STEAM witch

Pink Stripey Socks ||  Shrunken Apple Heads

One Time Through || Halloween Creepy Crawly Search and Find Activity

Babble Dabble Do || Magic Potions Density Tower

Little Bins for Little Hands || Halloween Ghost Pumpkin Science Eruptions

Lemon Lime Adventures || Sinking Marshmallows

More Halloween STEM and STEAM Fun for Kids (and Adults Too!)

You and the kids will love exploring your favorite October themes with STEAM Explorers! You’ll find hands-on art and engineering projects like spider bots, candy STEAM, bat physics, spider web weaving, and more. Delicious recipes that teach about science what you snack (the spider egg cookies are delish!). Printables perfect for home or school that get kids thinking and having fun. Pages to read that help kids understand spiders, sound, bats, and more. Plus they can get inspired by STEM careers all about candy. And as always, lots of fun stuff like color by coding, word searches, seek and finds, and more.


22 thoughts on “How to Make Pumpkin Brush Bots for Halloween”

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  2. Cool idea Anne! I had to say when I first saw the pumpkin – I thought it was real and was wondering how you got it to move! Okay – gotta look for styrofoam pumpkins – neato!

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