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Your Career• 3 Min read

8th October 2021

Lesson Ideas For Halloween

Looking for Halloween lesson ideas that actually teach your class something? We’ve pulled together all the resources you need to plan a fascinating and engaging Halloween in the classroom.

Halloween Lesson Ideas For Primary & Secondary Pupils

Halloween has strange and macabre history which pupils of all ages will enjoy learning about – but it’s still important to make sure you aren’t scaring anyone! Make sure you include some non-spooky activities for more sensitive pupils if you are concerned.


 The Origins Of Halloween

Halloween is derived from All Hallows Eve, the day before All Saints Day on the 1st November. Halloween festivities can be traced right back to the 9th century and the Celtic holiday of Samhain. Samhain marks the end of the harvest season, and people would gather and have a huge feast. In Irish literature from the early 9th century, the festival is marked by gatherings and feasts, during which ancient burial mounds would open, revealing a portal to the spirit realm. 

In order to ward off mischievous spirits, people would make offerings of treats and food. Some records indicate that early celebrations also involved dressing up to scare them away too – and later, there is evidence that people used being in disguise to play tricks on each other too.


 Halloween HISTORY

Halloween history is a great place to start when thinking about creating Halloween-themed lessons. You could encourage discussion by asking how your class would dress to ward off spirits, what they think might be served at the feast or what links they can see between Samhain and the present day celebration of Halloween. There’s loads of detailed information over at History.com Or, try this free Halloween history download from Twinkl. If you want your class to get active, you even try a reenactment. There’s more Samheim resources, mainly for older children, on TES too.


 Gothic POETRY

The term ‘Halloween’ first appeared around 1745 – and is the title of a Robert Burns poem from 1785. Pupils can listen to the poem here and explore an in-depth analysis of the language here. You could also try introducing some gothic literature to your pupils, Interesting Literature have shared ten of the best Gothic poems for Halloween here.

Read more: Teaching Poetry In Primary and Secondary


 Spooky ARTS AND CRAFTS

Halloween presents so many fun opportunities to be creative. Early Years and early Primary pupils will enjoy making simple crafts like cauldron collages or ghostly chalk pictures,  whilst older pupils could try making Halloween food such as these witches hat cakes or how about some cute meringue ghosts? Teacherstarter has some easy Halloween crafts for the classroom which come with tips for prep and cleaning up.

Halloween is BIG on Pinterest, and you can find thousands of unique lesson ideas and activities with a simple search. Start at one of our Halloween boards and pin everything you think you’d like to try! Don’t forget to follow us whilst you are there.


 SCIENCE EXPERIMENTS

Channel Dr. Frankestien and plan some spooky science experiments! You could try these glow-in-the-dark teaching ideas which also explains what’s making the glow. If you dare, you could try this fake blood science experiment with any age group. Watch out for squeamish pupils though! We also LOVE this Fire Snake experiment, which works all year round but is especially relevant at Halloween as it creates a smokey, firey snake in front of your pupil’s eyes! Fing loads of other amazing science experiments to excite your learners over at Science Buddies.


 SAFETY

The nights are getting longer in the UK and it’s a natural time to reinforce standard safety advice especially for older children who might be out and about without adult supervision. Find lots of tips for all elements of Halloween safety with the Child Accident Prevention Trust. 


 More Resources

 

We hope you’ve found some fun ideas to take into the classroom over the next few weeks! Let us know how you’ll be marking Halloween his year on our Twitter.

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