Are you looking for some great activities for Halloween day that will engage your students, yet still impress your administrator that you are focusing on standards? Well, you’ve come to the right place. I have ideas for every subject area. Oh, yeah!
Halloween is one of those days that students are just completely wound up and their focus is on nothing but Halloween costumes and the sugary candy that fills their teeth. When that happens, it’s just easier to find Halloween related activities that align with your standards then it is to fight that battle. It’s just like the old classroom management trick of learning their interests and building off it. If you can teach with their interests in mind, you’ll definitely keep them engaged, build relationships, and academic learning will soar.
A Halloween Activity for Any Content Area
Math is a very important subject and it’s an area that is easy to implement Halloween activities into. (Check back soon for my post on Math Activities for the Day After Halloween!). For instance, bring in some candy corn, candy pumpkins, or pumpkin seeds and create arrays. You can also use these to create pictographs, and bar graphs.
Alternatively, bring in pumpkins and have students measure their length, width, height, circumference and much more. You can read about this activity in my Engaging Math and Science Pumpkin Activities post and grab a FREE pumpkin flipbook.
Another great math activity is my pumpkin trivia wheels. These are highly engaging! These have problems around the wheel and as students turn the wheel they answer them. They can also create their own. See the video below. You can find these Pumpkin Trivia Wheels here on TpT.
Reading is another important subject. Why not consider picking several Halloween related read alouds? There are many great books out there related to Halloween (and even non-Halloween themed ones that would still work). Consider using some of these (aff. link):
- Creepy Pair of Underwear (Reynolds)
- I Need My Monster (Noll)
- Dem Bones (Barner)
- Halloween Hustle (Gunnufson)
And there are a lot more (as I’ve mentioned in other blog posts). A quick Google or Pinterest search will give you lots of ideas.
I love science, there is no doubt about that! I have many activities here that will help your students stay busy during Halloween (including the week or so leading up to it!). For instance, you could have your students experience force and motion with my flying pumpkins activities that include a freebie. You can read about that in my blog post, Flying Pumpkins: A Force and Motion Activity.
As I mentioned above, I also have the science pumpkin activities where we discuss the life cycle of a pumpkin, measure its mass, and so much more. I also have an entire post dedicated to Halloween science, where we created “rising zombies” with static electricity, created “screaming balloons,” and created rubbery bones. It was definitely a blast. You can read about all the different science activities here. I also have an entire blog post dedicated to all kinds of science centers and activities that we did with slime if you’re feeling “frisky!” You can read about my slime centers here.
Writing can be as simple as having students write an imaginary story about a creepy Halloween night, trick-or-treating, or a haunted house. If you can’t allow creative writing because of your standards, why not consider a personal narrative about a past Halloween? Or consider a persuasive piece! Pretend the president is considering eliminating Halloween. The students have to either write a persuasive piece for getting rid of it (yeah, right – who would!) or for keeping it!
I also have some great writing prompts that you can find here if you need more ideas.
Another option is this really cool writing pumpkin circle book. It is completely free! You can download it at the very bottom of the post!
Alright, this one may not exactly fit into your history standards but it may fit into your reading and writing standards. (Yes, I may have had to stretch a bit for this… Sorry! ha!). Consider having your students research the start of Halloween. Where did it come from? When did it start? Why do people wear costumes? Why do people go door to door asking for candy? Doesn’t that seem like a weird custom? It would make for a great discussion. That could then pose even more questions – is it still something that is “good” to do today? Why or why not? Then as a spin-off have students create mini-books to teach lower elementary children the “history” of Halloween.
There you have it- Halloween for EVERY subject!
Of course, if you are teaching in a school where you cannot teach Halloween, don’t worry I have you covered too. Check out my blog post, Activities for When You Can’t Celebrate Halloween.
If you have a friend that could benefit from this post, please send them my way!
Grab Your FREEBIE!
Don’t forget to grab your free Halloween Pumpkin Circle Book for writing (and check out all those other blog posts and activities!)
Looking for Halloween activities you can feel good about using your instructional minutes for? Check out these other free ideas for your upper elementary students and let us do the planning for you!
Images from left to right:
Ghostly STEM Fun! // Tried & True Teaching Tools
Incorporating Halloween and CER into the Science Classroom // Samson’s Shoppe
Halloween Activities for Any Content Area // The Owl Teacher
3 Easy to Implement Halloween Writing Activities for Upper Elementary // Think Grow Giggle
Speak, Listen, Draw Halloween Communication Activity // Feel-Good Teaching
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