Halloween is around the corner, and my family has certain traditions we enjoy throughout the holidays. When my kids were younger, we’d go on a Halloween hunt, where we’d drive through neighborhoods looking for the best decorations. As they’ve gotten older, finding the right costume and hanging with friends has become the most important activity, not to mention watching the scariest movies I will allow.
For toddlers and preschoolers, however, finding fun activities and crafts can be tricky, because many youngsters don’t enjoy super scary things. Instead, the focus should just be on having fun! In that spirit, here are some toddler-friendly, preschooler-friendly activities to add some extra fun to your family traditions.
Googly Eye Sensory Bag
Fill a Ziplock bag with clear or colored hair gel, and add googly eyes from your local craft store. Close the bag and add a strip of super glue across the top to prevent leaks. Just like the popular slime and other sensory toys, let the kiddos play away! Find one tutorial on how to make a googly eye sensory bag here.
Decorate plain white paper or plastic cups with ghost faces or bats. Stack them in a tier formation for a good ol’ game of bowling. You can even use an orange (with added pumpkin face, of course) to roll across a hard surface to knock down the cups. The best news for parents: no one will get hurt if the items get thrown too hard or fall over on someone. Find a tutorial here.
Five Little Pumpkins
Have you heard the catchy poem, Five Little Pumpkins? While singing the rhyme, let your toddler glue a fence — made from popsicle sticks or pretzel sticks — to a sheet of construction paper. Top the fence with five pumpkins — made out of construction paper, felt or even stickers — and don’t forget the moon or witches in the air! Find a tutorial here.
“Five little pumpkins sitting on a gate,
The first one said, “Oh my! It’s getting late!”
The second one said, “There’s witches in the air.”
The third one said, “But we don’t care.”
The fourth one said, “I’m ready for some fun.”
The fifth one said, “Let’s run and run and run.”
Ooooh went the wind and OUT went the lights and the five
little pumpkins rolled out of sight.”
Fall Leaf Craft
Celebrate autumn’s changing leaves with this craft. Trace your child’s arm and hand on a piece of construction paper (from around their elbow and on up) and cut out the shape. Let them decorate the shape with crinkled pieces of yellow, orange and red tissue paper, making ‘leaves’ for their tree. Find a tutorial here.