Halloween can be a fun time for many children and adults. However, some children may be too young to participate in traditional Halloween activities, while others may be too frightened or overwhelmed. Here are some age-appropriate Halloween activities for children that the whole family can enjoy.
Watch Halloween movies and books
There are many great, family-friendly Halloween movies and books available that help a child understand Halloween without being confused or scared. For example, It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown is a classic movie that, while it does show children dressed up as ghosts and skeletons, is not scary overall. Some top-rated Halloween books for preschoolers include Room on the Broom, Pete the Cat: Trick or Pete, and The Berenstain Bears Trick or Treat.
Host a Halloween party
If your child is too young to go trick-or-treating, they can still participate in Halloween festivities at a Halloween party. Invite your child’s friends and neighbors, and have fun with crafts such as painting or creating paper masks. If you’re concerned about your child’s sugar intake, you can offer healthier Halloween snacks such as “boonanas” – bananas cut in half, with chocolate chips used to represent eyes and a mouth.
Try trick-or-treating in different ways
Many parents of young children want their child to go trick-or-treating, but are concerned about them getting frightened by the costumes and decorations they might see. To ensure your child can trick-or-treat in an age-appropriate way, you can organize a night of bringing them to friends’, neighbors’ or relatives’ houses where you know what to expect. Many community centers and shopping malls host child-friendly Halloween events where your young child can trick-or-treat without getting too frightened.
Attend fall-related events
While not strictly Halloween-focused, local fall events are an ideal way to help your child get into the spirit of the season in a way that they can understand and handle. Consider events such as hay wagon rides, apple picking, and corn mazes. If you happen to encounter any Halloween-themed decorations or events along the way, you can discuss them with your child so they can begin to understand the concept of Halloween.
Toddlers and preschoolers love to dress up and receive delicious treats, but they may be too young to properly understand the scarier themes and imagery of Halloween. However, by seeking out age-appropriate Halloween movies, books, crafts, and events, you can help your young child have fun without the fear.