From candy science to pumpkin poems, these activities will help to keep students engaged and learning amidst the Halloween excitement and festivities on October 31!
Free Downloadable Halloween-Themed Lessons
- Pumpkin Shape Book, Grades K–2: Pumpkin shape book forms, plus directions for student writing, a cute poem about pumpkins, and literature connections.
- Halloween Thinking Skills Activities, Grade 1: Activities include writing about three things that scare you, adding up pumpkins, drawing a jack-o’-lantern, finishing a pattern, and making a picture.
- “Pumpkins” Poem, Grades 2–3: A read and understand unit includes a poem, comprehension questions, and a page that asks students to identify how rhyming couplets & repetition are used.
- Halloween Language Activities, Grades 3–5: Five Halloween-themed activities, including reading and drawing, solving a word search, answering a riddle by solving the code, and making words using the letters in “Jack-o’-lantern.”
- Human Body: Skeleton, Grades 1–6: Three pages of bones to cut out and construct into a large human skeleton.
Classic Ghost Story Read-Alouds
What’s even better than a good story to engage students? How about a riveting ghost story? Depending on the age of your students, they may enjoy listening to this classic haunted house story from Alfred Hitchcock’s “Ghost Stories for Young People.”
More Halloween-Themed Ideas
Activities that involve movement and/or small-group work help to release some of the energy that inevitably comes with Halloween. Some ideas include:
- Hosting a classroom or school-wide Halloween costume parade. Create a variety of categories for prizes like a homework pass, extra recess, etc.
- Painting and decorating pumpkins. This is best for outdoors, if possible!
- Creating a haunted house diorama in shoe boxes or designing a haunted house on paper (small-group activity)
- “Predicting Pumpkins” hands-on activity from Education World
- Science experiments with a Halloween theme, such as “Candy Chromatography” and “Glow-in-the-dark Chemistry” from Science Buddies
Healthful Halloween Snacks
Instead of sugary treats for class celebrations, our elementary school has encouraged healthful Halloween snacks, which helps to keep students on task. If you’re planning classroom parties, consider asking parents to get creative with “spooky” (mostly healthful) treats like these:
- Sandwiches cut into shapes of pumpkins or ghosts (using cookie cutters)
- Tray of spooky snacks such as “carrot fingers” or “freaky hot dog fingers”
- White chocolate ghost treat made out of dried fruit
- “Monster mouths” made of sliced apples, peanut butter, and mini marshmallows
Check out this site for many more ideas for healthful Halloween snacks.
Theresa Wooler has more than 10 years’ experience in K–6 classrooms as a parent volunteer, has taught high school English, and is currently involved in education through Evan-Moor’s marketing communications team.