Halloween occurs during one of the best seasons of the year and can be a great opportunity to provide students with multiple learning opportunities to help facilitate their speech and language skills. Now that the school year has gotten into full swing and your schedule is more stable, Halloween can be a great time to begin incorporating crafts, book units, sensory bins, etc. Below are some examples for Halloween activities during your speech and language therapy sessions:
Preschool age: This can be one of the most rewarding groups to do Halloween activities with as they’re at the age when dressing up and trick-or-treating is at its best! Crafts, such as decorating a paper pumpkin, dressing up characters in costumes, making a spider web, and creating paper bat hats, are always a great option for this age range and can target a variety of language skills such as prepositions, vocabulary, following directions, requesting, sorting, comparing, articulation/phonology and even pragmatics. Sensory bins with Halloween-theme-related objects can also be a great way to help engage students with describing and predicting.
K-2 grade age: Students in this age range absolutely love age-appropriate spooky Halloween stories, such as Room on the Broom, The Good, the Bad, and the Spooky, and The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid of Anything. As with any book activity, the clinician can target story sequencing, vocabulary acquisition, describing, syntactic development, etc. Every year with my students, I also like to target the pumpkin cycle and have them plant a seed in the ground. We then make sure to water it during every session for the month of October and right before Halloween, I purchase mini-pumpkins to put out in the ground so they can be amazed at the pumpkin they “grew.” We then describe it and talk about any food we can make with it before they take it home!
3-5 grade age: For this age range, I typically focus mostly on vocabulary acquisition and writing skills. Mad Libs continue to be popular for this age and can target parts of speech and vocabulary. I also enjoy having this age group design their own haunted house with a written description, which they love to do. For the older students, I will also have them complete deductive reasoning activities to find out which character wore which Halloween costume.
Halloween is my favorite time of the year and I often share this enthusiasm with my students. If you work with students who don’t celebrate Halloween, any of these activities can be supplemented with a fall-based theme instead of something more spooky, of course. I hope you enjoy these activities with your students as much as I do!
Author: Griffin Parrott M.Ed, CCC-SLP