Holidays and special events are a great time to get children interested in projects that will stretch their brains while exercising their creative muscles. Even Halloween provides many opportunities for fun, themed activities to do with your little one. You’re already doing many of these activities, but here’s how you can add some educational fun to support your child’s learning and growth.
These ideas are hands-on and incorporate STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, and math) concepts. With these activities, any leftover Halloween candy is sure to quickly disappear!
Count and Sort Candy
One of the easiest things you can do once you’ve brought in the candy haul from trick-or-treating festivities is to let your child use the sweets as a manipulative for sorting and counting.
- Count the various types of candy, then compare how many of each
- Sort the wrappers by like colors, then compare those amounts to each other
- Group candy by shape, such as rectangular versus circular
- Sort by size, in order of smallest to largest
The possibilities are fairly open-ended. Depending on the interest level of your child and the variety of candies collected during the holiday, you can play around with a wider array of potential sorting games based on different criteria. You can also reinforce letter learning by finding wrappers with similar letters!
Test Sink or Float with Leftover Candy
This is a great STEAM activity if you have lots of leftover or unwanted Halloween candy! Take different candies and a large glass of water and test which candies sink to the bottom or float to the top. This introduces children to science concepts. Ask if there are any common traits between the candies that sank or floated, like size or shape. Let them explore if the water changes color with certain candies too!
Play with Pumpkins
If you’re already planning on carving pumpkins, these festive vegetables can serve double duty as the basis for several great Halloween projects for preschoolers. Children can use lengths of string to measure the circumference of each pumpkin, then chart the results for comparison. Pumpkins can be grouped by size or roundness, then lined up in order to practice identifying small differences in proportion. Have children count the number of ridges on the outside of each pumpkin and discover how many are the same.
Check out one of our other blog posts for more fun, educational pumpkin activities.
Make Candy Corn Art
Skip traditional art supplies and use candy corn instead! Create a candy corn motif, keeping it open-ended for your child. Have some additional supplies on hand like construction or tissue paper, which can open the door for even more creative ideas. Maybe your child wants to use the candy to create a ghost or a pumpkin, or something else that reminds him or her of fall or Halloween. You can then help your child glue down the candy corn into a permanent creation.
These Halloween activities are not only fun, but they introduce your toddler or preschooler to important STEAM concepts. Get other ideas for activities and games you can do as a family on our blog during the holidays and throughout the year. Happy Halloween!