Celebrating Halloween at school


So we are not allowed to celebrate Halloween at school.  No costumes, no pumpkin carving, no Halloween books or projects.

I understand it, sort of.  Some religions are offended by Halloween with its hint of devilry, and some cultures actually believe in spirits and ghosts and thus find Halloween to be disturbing.  However, I think an argument could be made that Halloween is not about devils, or witches, or ghosts, or black magic of any kind.  Halloween is a festival for children, full of cultural richness, that helps them to confront and manage their fears whilst having a ton of fun.

Tomorrow is our big fall party, and we will celebrate Fall in all its glory, but I might just sneak in a Halloween book or song while we’re at it…..

How does your school handle Halloween?  How do YOU handle it?

7 thoughts on “Celebrating Halloween at school

  1. I am a student teacher this semester and I just found out how my school handles Halloween. It is HUGE! I am teaching second grade and here is the plan for the day.

    1. Morning writing and drawing activity about costume.
    2. Walk to Sunnybank (assisted living) and sing halloween carols to people.
    3. Eat a special halloween lunch.
    4. Watch a movie, halloween snack and drink, change into costume.
    5. Parade out of the school, as a whole school, walk to the business district and people will pass out candy, walk back to school.
    6. Have an afternoon Halloween in class party for the last 1.5 hours of the day.
    Whew, is all I can say.


  2. We have Costume Day tomorrow… the kids can dress up as their favorite book character. No masks, fake blood, etc. I did our pumpkin unit this week and we did carve the pumpkin, but I reminded the kiddos that not every family celebrates Halloween (99% of my class does). Then I quickly moved into a math lesson by using different shapes to carve the pumpkin.

    Probably not 100% appropriate through the eyes of the rules police, but I leave all the other religious holidays alone, so for some reason I feel justified.

  3. Being a “private” preschool we are “allowed” to celebrate Halloween. (I wonder how many years that will last?) I’ll have a rundown on my blog of what we’re doing tomorrow, but here are the basics:
    Costumes, parade, walking trip across the street to the nursing home to say “Happy Halloween” to the residents there, back to school, a couple of stories (haven’t picked them yet), treats and a short movie (Curious George and the costume shop). Maybe even some games too.

    I’m wearing a costume tomorrow, my assistant is not, (she doesn’t like Halloween). I think that it helps the children who don’t want to wear costumes (they are optional at our school.)

    We’ve carved pumpkins, talked about bats, spiders and found black cats (with letters on them, of course) hidden around our room. We’ve sang some fun songs, and have done some fun flannel boards.

    It’s not spooky or scary. It is just plain fun.

    We do have some families who will not be attending school tomorrow, and will be at church or due to cultural preferences wish not to partake in the festivities. I’m okay with that.

    It is also my husband’s 40th birthday. So we love Halloween at our house. I’m not a blood, gore, spooky sort of person. I just like to dress up and get treats, LOL. I like the cutesy part of Halloween.

    So that’s it in a nutshell.

    I know it is harder in the public schools. It is the same here. My children will have “fall parties.” Some teachers allow more of a Halloween theme, if there aren’t sensitivities in the classroom. I hope your Fall Party is a whole lot of fun.

    I’d carve a pumpkin, just not with a face. Maybe just a whole bunch of shapes around the whole thing. Just for the experience of carving a pumpkin.

    I could keep talking on and on about this. But I won’t, since this is your blog and not mine, LOL.


  4. We are having pajama day, eating pancakes, kids bring a stuffed animal and we will have a comfy, cozy story time. We have been learning about pumpkins all month, seeds, the growing sequence, counting seeds, finding out if the pumpkin would float in water, and then we went to the pumpkin patch yesterday. I think kids need a chance to dress up but I know a lot of people don’t like Halloween. We do read books about pumpkins and there are usually jack-o-lanterns in those books. We used to do nursery rhyme day where kids would dress as a character from a nursery rhyme (which we had been learning since September). I am just glad I don’t have to teach on the day AFTER Halloween.

  5. Our school always celebrates Halloween. The children arrive at school with their costumes on. (It’s only a 2 1/2 hour program, do this saves time), Parents, grandparents, and any interested family come in to school with the children that day. After all the children arrive we have a parade around the school room. After our parade we preform some songs and fingerplays for our guests. Finally, we get changed, family goes home, and the children stay for a fun Halloween craft. It’s hectic, but always fun for the kids.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s