Sunday, October 28, 2012

Halloween Party Ideas

WOW!  How do I ever begin to explain all that has been going on in my life for the past 3 months?!?  I was hoping to return to my blog much sooner than now, with ideas for back-to-school, fall, math and also get a jump on Halloween ideas.  Unfortunately, none of that happened before now.  Hopefully by now, if you are a room parent, you have already begun thinking of what games, crafts, snacks, activities or ideas you have in mind for your 1st classroom party of the school year...HALLOWEEN!  If you haven't yet thought of it, and you find yourself waking up in a cold sweat at night, here are a few tips and tricks to get you started.

Over the years, I have found the best system for younger aged kids to plan to run the party as centers or stations.  Break the students into small groups and have them rotate from one center to the next.  The smaller sized groups makes it easier for parent volunteers to manage and it helps the students by changing up the activities.  The best ideas for centers include age appropriate games, snacks, or crafts.  After rotating through the centers, it's best to end the party with a whole group game or activity or a fun book relating to the holiday.

Don't try to do everything yourself!  You will end up either stressed, broke, or at home at the end of the party crying into your diet Coke.  Ask for help!!!  Parents, grandparents, or close friends are all great resources.  Ask for help in a variety of ways...either by attending the party to assist or by donating goods to the party, especially for any working parents who can't attend.  Check with the teacher ahead of time to see if the school/classroom has any supplies you might need for the party.  Most likely, the teacher may be willing to donate glue, construction paper or other craft items.  Keep in mind, that you not only need to plan for craft and game supplies and snacks, but also for paper ware or any simple decorations.

 Even though you can guarantee things WILL get chaotic and loud during the party, enjoy it!  The kids should have a fun time no matter what they are doing...even if things don't go according to plan, which sometimes happens!  One thing to think of is taking pictures.  I know that I take pictures of my class during the holiday parties so that I can add them to my end of the year DVD.  If that's something a teacher doesn't do, you may want to assign a parent to be in charge of this assignment.

Classroom Party Guide from Volunteer Spot

And are a few Halloween ideas to get things rolling...

Halloween Mason Jar Lantern - I would think this fun craft idea would be ideal for 3rd graders or older.
Scary/cute spider hat from Little Buggie Tutu
7 Halloween party games and activity ideas from Volunteer Spot.
Copy and laminate this monster chart from Expressive Monkey to have students draw their own monster masterpieces.
Don't Eat Frank game board from My Sister's Suitcase.
Skeletons made with brownies, white chocolate covered pretzels and marshmallows (drawn on with edible marker) from Wants and Wishes.

Crispy Frankenstein Treats from Grumpy's Honeybunch.
Candy Corn Halloween Bark from The Girl Who Ate Everything.
Witches hat made from frosted sugar cone, sprinkles, gummy worms and cookie or cupcake liner as suggested. 
(Source:  No Time for Flash Cards)