The Spooktacular Season is upon us, and what better way to get your students excited about reading, writing, and science than with some fun and slightly frightening Halloween-themed classroom activities? Whether you’re a Raz-Plus, Reading A-Z, Writing A-Z, or Science A-Z user, we’re here to help you incorporate Halloween into your lesson plans.
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Raz-Plus and Reading A-Z
Books for Grades K–2
Halloween Costumes – Read this book aloud with your class and use the book to discuss Halloween costumes. Have students make a new page for the book. They can draw pictures of their costumes and describe them with this sentence: "I look like a ____________ ." This book is perfect for kindergarten students and is supplemented by high-frequency words and visuals to help students understand the content.
Hector’s Halloween – Use this Shared Reading Book in your classroom to help you model text-to-text connections and making predictions. A 5-day lesson accompanies the book, and the fun characters promote discussion as students practice reading skills and strategies. This shared reading book is suitable for first and second graders.
Teacher Tip – Use the character cards to tell the important events in the story.
Books for Grades 3–4
The Hollow Kids Series – A spooky favorite among young readers, this series takes students on eerie adventures involving haunted forests, strange villages, and creepy basements. Read the first book, The Hollow, in spooky voices and assign students roles to narrate the various characters.
Want some spooky inspiration? Check out this fun video!
Teacher Tip – Take it a step further and add props! Supply cat ears, a gladiator helmet, or a white cloak for those reading the parts of the three children featured in the story.
Books for Grades 5+
The Monkey’s Paw – This hair-raising mystery about a magical monkey’s paw will keep young readers’ hearts racing and pages turning as they ask: “Does the monkey’s paw really have power?” Engage in a class discussion by separating the class into two groups: those who believe the paw was magic and those who believe the occurrences were simply coincidence. Facilitate a friendly debate. Have the groups create a persuasive argument and have one student present their ideas from each group. This book is available at levels V, Y and Z1.
Teacher Tip – Play creepy music in the background as they read the book on their own, or utilize sound effects when reading in a group like fire crackling and pounding on the door.
Writing for Grades K-5
Build-A-Book – Ignite students’ passions for writing by prompting them to create a scary story! Students become authors as they use the Halloween-themed clipart available in the Build-A-Book app to create their own thriller. Students can read each other's spooky stories in the Kids Writing Library as a fun follow-up activity over the course of October.
Teacher Tip – Setting constraints can actually spark creativity! It sounds counterintuitive, but parameters actually help get our gears spinning. Give your students constraints on number of characters or assign different spooky settings to different groups of students.
Life Science for Grades K–2
Pumpkin iFile – If you’re focusing on Life Science during your science block, you might find this pumpkin iFile relevant for Halloween. iFiles allow each student in a group to read about a specific, high-interest topic related to unit concepts. In this iFile, students learn about different features of pumpkins and how they grow. This iFile is written at the lowest of three reading levels.
Life Science for Grades 3–4
Pipe Cleaner Skeletons – If your science class is focusing on Life Science, October is a great month to introduce vertebrates, invertebrates, and skeletons! Learning A-Z offers a wide variety of resources on these topics, and the pipe-cleaner skeleton activity is a fun way to integrate Halloween themes into science! In this guided activity, students construct skeleton models and explore how bones and joints help support a body and allow it to move.
Physical Science for Grades 3–4
“Bats” Themed Quick Reads – Using Echoes To See – Teach your students about the properties of sound this October. Bats are often thought of as spooky creatures. They are also fascinating to scientists because of their ability to use echolocation to navigate in the dark. Decorate your classroom with bats and learn about their unique qualities this Halloween season!