Holidays are a great opportunity to capitalize on students' natural enthusiasm. If you can tie curriculum into a holiday like Halloween, kids will be excited, engaged, and still learning or practicing previously learned skills. Keep reading to find out my favorite halloween school activities for elementary learners!
1. Math Activity: Halloween Fraction Cupcakes
Need a fun activity for Halloween but still want to practice math skills? This fraction activity will help students practice identifying fractions of a set in an engaging way. A ready-to-go PowerPoint shows students a picture of a group of cupcakes and asks a specific question like: "What fraction of the cupcakes has a witch's hat?." Students can share their answer with a partner or use the printable recording sheet that comes with the activity. The group of cupcakes increases as the activity goes on, ending with a challenge for students to write their own fraction question. This activity is sure to make kids hungry so it's a good idea to have a treat ready for them after!
2. Reading Activity: Compare and Contrast Creepy Books
My third graders LOVE these books by Aaron Reynolds: Creep Carrots and Creepy Pair of Underwear. In both stories, Jasper Rabbit has a problem--he's being haunted by something seemingly innocuous (carrots and underwear). Jasper tries to solve his problem in many ways and each story has an unexpected ending. This compare and contrast activity provides a graphic organizer and scaffolded sort to help students identify how the stories are alike and how they are different. This activity is sure to be a win! I would stretch the reading of the books and activity over 2-3 days.
3. Science Activity: Candy Corn Experiment
We start the year learning about the scientific method so this is an easy and fun way to circle back to that and explore the interactions between a solid (candy corn) and liquids (water, baking soda and water mixed, salt water, and water and vinegar mixed). Best of all, this activity is FREE on Teachers Pay Teachers. You will have to gather the supplies but I bet parents will donate if you ask! It's recommended for grades K-2 but I know my third graders will love it.
What's your favorite Halloween classroom activity? Are you dressing up this year?? I'd love to hear from you!