Kids absolutely love Halloween but when they’re little trick-or-treating can be a bit tough. They might be too tired or scared to walk around the streets, or perhaps asking neighbours for lollies doesn’t sit right with you. There are loads of other fun ways to celebrate Halloween though, so try these 8 simple ideas instead.
1. Get dressed up
Children love any excuse to get dressed up and if you get in on the act too they’ll love it even more, even if you’re not actually leaving the house. Things like witches, zombies, mummies, ghosts, monsters and black cats are great but you don’t have to stick to spooky costumes, anything from pirates to princesses can work too! You can also use whatever items you have around the house too, think old sheets for a ghost, toilet paper for a mummy, or make-up and ripped old clothes for zombies. Just be sure to get out the camera and take some snaps of you all around the dinner table.
2. Dish out goodies
Just because you’re not taking them trick-or-treating doesn’t mean the little ones can’t feel involved in all the excitement! Get them to help you prepare bowls of lollies (or whatever it is you’re handing out), and then let them be in charge of greeting all the kids who come to the door and dishing out the treats. They’ll love looking at all the different creatures and characters who arrive on your doorstep. Just remember that they’ll need an adult with them at all times for safety reasons, and also make sure they don’t get too scared by any of the costumes.
3. Make scary treats
Baking is a fun activity for preschoolers and when there’s a theme involved, even better! There are so many cute options for Halloween cookies and cupcakes made into things like spiders, bats, ghosts and more. Or you could make mummy frankfurts, mini pumpkin pies, pizzas made into monster faces, or even use fruit to create fun healthy treats – such as Jack-O-Lanterns made out of oranges or mandarins, ‘ghost’ bananas using choc-chips for eyes and a mouth, or ‘Green Goblin’ smoothies. Let your imagination run wild! You may even want to invite some other small children over for a mini Halloween party dinner to make it even more exciting.
4. Decorate the house
Just like Christmas, decorating the home (inside or out), really helps ramp up the festive mood. There are lots of fun options; you can use fake cobwebs strewn over your walls or front door, plastic spiders, bats and other creepy crawlies to place around, fun signs and monsters in the garden, or a nice big fat Jack-O-Lantern on the porch with a candle inside to greet trick-or-treaters as they arrive. Children will love helping make decorations and dressing up the place.
5. Do some Halloween craft
Carving pumpkins isn’t the only crafty thing you can get up to on Halloween. Little ones could make scary masks or hats, do spooky paintings, create monsters or other things out of old toilet rolls and containers, or make fun Halloween signs and decorations for the house.
6. Have a Halloween hunt
If little ones like the idea of receiving lollies (and c’mon, who doesn’t really?), why not stage a Halloween Hunt in your own garden? Similar to an Easter hunt, you could pretend that monsters have hidden the lollies for them to find using clues, and give them a little basket or bag to stash all the loot they find.
7. Tell spooky stories
Stories are way more fun when read by torchlight! Grab a spooky book and a light and jump under the bed covers with your little one, they’ll think it’s the best thing you’ve ever done. Or you could get under a teepee tent or sheets thrown over chairs for extra effect. Don’t have any scary books? Make up your own stories! You could even take turns telling tales with the kids to encourage them to use their imagination.
8. Watch a ‘scary’ film
We’re not talking about things like horror clown movie It here. Try something A LOT more tame, like a spooky cartoon flick such as Hotel Transylvania or Casper. Even Halloween specials of shows like Peppa Pig and Curious George can be super fun too. Just remember to do the mandatory monster check under the bed before your little one goes to sleep!
How are you planning to celebrate Halloween with your little ones?