Halloween is my favorite holiday and I especially love to celebrate it with my kids. So when the class parent is looking for parent volunteers to help out with the Halloween class party, I am the first to raise my hand.
I love being in the classroom at this time of year. Often it’s the first class party since returning to school and in my opinion, the most imaginative party of the year.
One thing I have learned over the years is that every classroom and every party is different. As much as you may want to plan your own style of school celebration, it’s important to be respectful of the teacher’s guidelines for parties.
Each classroom has its own dynamic and some classrooms can easily transition from party back to the class routine while other’s find it more difficult. Your role as Class Parent or Room Parent or even Class Volunteer is to support the teacher and teacher’s wishes.
Parents are after all guests in their child’s classroom. When invited, they should be ask how they can help, listen and respond to teacher’s needs, offer new ideas when asked, clean up, and not overstay their visit.
Here are some ideas that have been approved by both teachers and class parents and get cheers from students as well. Suggest them to your child’s teacher for a fun and festive celebration.
Make an Edible Halloween Ghost Craft
We love this craft because it’s quick, easy, and completely edible (and meets nut free and gluten free guidelines). Teachers love it because it strengthens fine motor skills, is easy to clean up, and makes for a great art presentation that the students are proud to display.
Supplies (for Class of 25 Students)
25 black paper plates (1 for each student)
25 plastic knives (1 for each student)
50 ziploc bags (2 for each student)
8 bags of mini-marshmallows
2 bags of regular M&Ms
3 cans of vanilla frosting
120 cereal stars (about 2 cups)
Pen or pencil
Prepare as much in advance as possible to ensure a successful activity. Ask the teacher if you and other volunteers can come in about 15 minutes early to set up for the party and the craft.
Prep at Home
Write each student’s name on back of one black plate
Count out 170 marshmallows and into a ziploc bag. Separate two brown M&Ms, six red M&Ms and six stars into ziploc bag. Repeat 25x. Bring extra supplies.
Make your own edible ghost at home with your child, so the class will have some inspiration for what their ghost can look like.
In Classroom – Before Students Return to Class and with help from other Class Volunteers
Place each plate, one plastic knife, and each bag of marshmallows and candy decorations on each student’s desk.
Using the frosting and a knife spread the frosting on each plate in the shape of a ghost. Place extra marshmallows on outline to set in place.
When Student Arrive and Seated
Explain the craft and ask for the volunteers and teacher to help each student with adding more icing to the interior of ghost outline and helping them spread as a paste.
Then show students how to fill in the ghost with marshmallows.
Leave some space and make eyes and a mouth using the brown and red M&Ms in the ziploc bag.
Using the knife, add some icing to the back of the stars, and stick at the top of the plate.
Walk around the room to ensure each student’s ghost is complete and put plates to the side to set.
Help the students and teacher clean up the room using the wipes and return to previous state.
Expect students to eat as they work, so it’s always a good idea to bring along some extra supplies. But most of all just have fun with this completely edible and completely kid and teacher friendly activity.
Read a Funny and Educational Halloween Story
Coming into your child’s class is always a memorable experience for yourself and for your child. Be sure to prepare by reading the story out aloud a few times at home and be expressive as possible. Read slowly and change voices and tones for the full effect. But most of all have fun with it as the author intended.
Here are some classic Halloween stories that are beloved by all for their charming characters, beautiful illustrations, and valuable lessons.
There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly by Pam Adams (For ages 4 and up)
Big Pumpkin by Erica Silverman (For ages 4 and up)
The Hallo-Weiner by Dav Pilkey (For ages 4 and up)
A Healthy Twist on Trick or Treating
With new health guidelines in place at many schools, we wanted to come up with a way to keep the tradition of trick or treating with an opportunity for students to taste a variety of healthy treats.
With this mini food tasting experience, kids get to trick or treat at different food stations and fill their pumpkin-like orange peppers with a variety of healthy treats.
At the end of the stations they can choose, from two different dressing types on the side. Then they go back to their desks to enjoy their mini-salad. Ask the other class volunteers to help man these fun salad bar stations and maybe share a fun tip about each healthy food.
6 medium sized bowls
25 orange peppers (can stand on flat surface)
25 cherry tomatoes
1 package/chunk of low fat cheddar cheese (cut in 25 cubes)
25 cauliflower florets
25 broccoli florets
25 black olives
25 baby carrots
25 plastic forks
25 plastic cups
Bottle of Balsamic Vinaigrette or Italian Dressing
Prep Work Before Arriving in Classroom
Once in Classroom – Before Students Return to Class and with help from other Class Volunteers
Place one orange pepper with top on each student’s desk
Set up several stations; 1 for each food, 1 for paper goods and the final one for the dressings
If desired, add umbrella toothpicks or cupcake toppers to cheese or vegetables for a more festive look. Sometimes a fancy toothpick makes all the difference with kids.
When Student Arrive and are Seated
Explain how a mini-tasting works and ask the students to line up accordingly with their pepper “pumpkins”
Ask students to visit each station to get a treat and then return to their desks to eat.
Ask students if they have any questions about their treats.
Be sure to tell them about your favorite treat and how you like to eat them.
Note: Although the supply list is for 25 students, we always like to encourage seconds when it comes to healthy eating. If you class budget permits, we suggest that you bring more food and let students know to go back on line for their favorite treats.
When it comes to school parties, we want to be mindful and work together within school guidelines and teachers preferences in helping our kids celebrate and learn.
Halloween is definitely about trick or treating, costumes, and using your imagination and we hope these ideas provide you with options and inspiration to satisfy your creative ambitions while meeting your schools’ needs.
Helpful Tips for Any Class Party
Always ask the teacher for what he or she needs or how you can best help.
Always offer ideas with the teacher in advance.
Be realistic about timing and respectful of class schedule and routine.
Thank the teacher for allowing you the opportunity to share in the experience with the class.
If you take photos, share them with teacher and class afterwards with a thank you note.
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