Halloween is a great time to enjoy spooky pleasure with your family. As you count down the days to Halloween, enjoy these crafts, tips and tricks to treat the kids to lots of fun. Whether your little ones will be dressed as ghosts, monsters, superheroes or princesses for Halloween, you can’t go wrong with Halloween crafts.
Give these cute Halloween crafts a try for home or school. Simple Halloween crafts using construction paper, markers and glue are easy to make for kids of all ages.Visit my Pinterest Halloweeny board for lots of unique Halloween ideas.
1 sheet 12″ x 12″ green paper
1 sheet 12″ x 12″ purple paper
1 sheet 12″ x 12″ black paper
Round corners of green paper to make a large circle or oval for face. Cut 12″ x 1.5″ strip from purple paper for hat brim. Cut large triangle from purple paper for hat. Cut small pieces of black paper into circles for eyes. Cut triangle shaped nose from black paper. Cut scary mouth from black paper. Cut 4 strips 12″ x 1.5″ each from black paper. Fold black strips accordion-style to make arms and legs. Glue it all together as shown and hang on wall or from ceiling.
1 sheet 12″ x 12″ orange paper
1 sheet 12″ x 12″ black paper
1 small scrap of green paper
Round corners of orange paper to make a large circle for face. Cut 4 strips 12″ x 1.5″ each from black paper . Cut triangle or other shaped eyes and nose from black paper. Cut happy or scary mouth from black paper. Cut green scrap into pumpkin stem. Fold black strips accordion-style to make arms and legs. Glue it all together as shown and hang on wall or from ceiling.
Pumpkin and witch can also be made from smaller sheets of paper. Ghost can be made using white paper cut into a ghost shape, then follow directions for pumpkin.
Make Your Own Monster
Kids love being creative. Bring out your scrap paper box, glue and markers and and let kids make their own monsters from various colors, sizes and shapes of construction paper or scrapbook paper. Hang up at home for instant Halloween decor.
Spooky Halloween Shapes
Cut circles, squares, triangles and rectangle shapes from construction paper. Let kids glue together any way they want to make witches, ghosts and other spooky Halloween shapes.
Halloween Party Tips
Preschool and Toddler Parties
When planning a Halloween party for preschoolers, keep it simple and not too spooky. Although your tot may love ghosts, ghouls and zombies, some preschoolers are more easily spooked.
Costumes are a must for preschoolers, so add to the fun with a costume contest. Award prizes for the most creative, most unusual, spookiest, cutest and whatever other categories come to mind. Toddlers are happy with small prizes, but be sure to have enough prizes so everyone’s a winner.
If your neighborhood isn’t toddler friendly for trick-or-treating, visit a nearby neighborhood or your local mall. Other options include visiting a local church or school for trunk-or-treating or going room to room in your house with adults dressed up behind each door passing out treats.
Parties for School Age Kids
Activities, activities, activities make parties for school age kids fun for all. Start with ready-to-build Halloween craft kits or create your own crafts using construction paper, glitter, sequins, markers and other craft supplies.
A fun Halloween party game for school age kids is Pin the Nose on the Jack-o’-Lantern. Let each child create their own nose using construction paper and use tape or putty to glue on the noses instead of sharp tacks.
Add apples to a bucket of water for the timeless Halloween activity of bobbing for apples. Make the game more challenging by using a blindfold so kids can’t see the apples.
Teen and ‘Tween Parties
Spooky is what it’s all about when hosting a Halloween party for ‘tweens. Don’t worry about the fear factor — the scarier, the better when planning a party for ‘tweens. Special effects to add include: strobe lights, fog machines, spider webs and haunted house props.
Turn up the heat with a costume contest, awarding prizes for spookiest costume, most creative, best witch, zombie blaster and other categories. Make the prizes worth fighting for so the ‘tweens will be inspired to dress the part.
Although ‘tweens are too old for trick-or-treat, they’ll enjoy a scavenger hunt. Hide items in your home or yard and send the kids out in teams to find them. Use technology to make the game more ‘tween-friendly by letting each team use a cell phone to take photos of the items instead of bringing them back.
When hosting a Halloween party for teens, let the teens do the planning. The teens can enjoy their own gathering in the basement or den while the adults take over the living room. With adults in the house, there’s less opportunity for teens to terrorize the neighborhood.
Sweet Halloween Party Treats
Your treats will be the hit of the party when you start with Country Crock. Halloween Cake, Mummy Cookies or Halloween Cake Pops are perfect additions to any Halloween party.
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 cup solid pack pumpkin
3 eggs, lightly beaten
3/4 cup Country Crock Spread, melted
1 tsp. grated orange peel
1/4 cup orange juice
1 1/4 cups confectioners sugar
1/4 cup Country Crock Spread
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
3 Tbsp. 2% milk
3 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, melted
1/2 cup white chocolate chips, melted
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted
2 chocolate cookies
Chocolate stick candies or pretzel sticks
Preheat oven to 350 F. Line 9-inch square baking pan with aluminum foil; set aside.
For CAKE, whisk together flour, brown sugar, spice, baking powder and baking soda in large bowl. In another bowl, whisk together pumpkin, eggs, Country Crock Spread, orange peel and orange juice. Stir into flour mixture until blended. Pour into prepared pan. Bake 1 hour or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool on wire rack.
For FROSTING, beat confectioners sugar, Spread, cocoa powder and milk in large bowl with electric mixer until smooth. With mixer on low speed, drizzle in melted chocolate and beat until blended. Set aside.
For DECORATIONS, Using pastry bag fitted with plain tip (or zip-tp bag with small piece snipped from corner) pipe melted white chocolate into “ghosts” and melted chocolate into “trees” onto parchment or aluminum foil lined baking sheet. Refrigerate until firm, then carefully lift off paper. Decorate tombstone-shaped cookies with melted chocolate if desired.
Frost top and sides of cooled cake. Crumble chocolate cookies to make “dirt” and sprinkle over top of cake. Quickly place “tombstones” into frosting. Add “ghosts”, “trees” and pumpkin candies. Attach chocolate stick candies or pretzels around sides of cake to create a fence so ghosts can’t escape.
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup Hellmann’s® or Best Foods® Light Mayonnaise
1/2 cup Country Crock® Spread
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 package (12 oz.) white chocolate morsels or prepared vanilla frosting
Mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
Beat sugar, Hellmann’s or Best Foods Light Mayonnaise, Spread, egg and vanilla in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed, scraping sides occasionally, 2 minutes or until well blended. Reduce speed to low. Gradually beat in flour just until blended. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 350 F. Lightly spray cookie sheets with nonstick cooking spray; set aside.
Roll dough into 36 (1-inch) balls, then form into baby carrot shape for body. Roll remaining dough into (1/2-inch) balls for head and press together with body. Arrange ”mummies” on prepared baking sheets, 2 inches apart. Bake 18 to 20 minutes until bottoms are golden. Cool 2 minutes on wire rack; remove cookies from sheets and cool completely.
Microwave white chocolate in microwave-safe bowl at MEDIUM-HIGH (70%) power for 1 minute; heat until melted and stir until smooth. Dip tops of cookies in white chocolate; arrange on wire rack set over aluminum foil to catch excess chocolate. Make ”bandage marks” on the body using toothpick. Add morsels for ”eyes”. Cool completely before serving.
TIP: To make coffin, “glue” long melba toasts together with additional melted white chocolate, cutting the toasts to fit short ends.
Halloween Cake Pops
1 box (16 oz.) pound cake mix
4 large eggs
2/3 cup water
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup Country Crock Spread
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cup Country Crock Spread
1 cup confectioners sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped and melted
WHITE CHOCOLATE COATING:
10 ounces white chocolate chips
2 Tbsp. canola oil
1/4 cup Country Crock Spread
1/3 cup confectioners sugar
Black food coloring
For CAKE, prepare pound cake according to package directions, using eggs water, cocoa powder, Country Crock Spread and vanilla. Bake, then cool completely on wire rack. Crumble cake into fine crumbs into medium bowl; set aside.
For FROSTING, beat Spread, sugar and vanilla in large bowl with electric mixer until blended. Beat in melted chocolate, then cake crumbs intil blended. Shape cake mixture into 48 balls and arrange on aluminum foil or waxed paper lined baking sheet. Insert lollipop stick into each ball and freeze 2 hours.
For WHITE CHOCOLATE COATING, melt white chocolate chips according to package directions. Stir in oil until blended. Dip balls into white chocolate mixture, swirling to coat and gently shaking to remove excess chocolate. Arrange cake pops on foil or waxed paper lined baking sheet and let stand until chocolate is set, about 15 minutes.
TO DECORATE, put Spread In small microwave-safe bowl and microwave at HIGH 5 seconds or until melted. Stir in confectioners sugar, then black food color to create a black piping frosting. Place mixture in pastry bag fitted with plain tip and carefully pipe “eyes” “noses” and “mouths” onto pops*. (Try practicing this first by piping out onto a sheet of foil or parchment paper.)
*Alternatively draw on the face details with edible black markers or with black food decorating gel.
Pumpkin carving is fun, but it’s also pretty messy. For no-carve pumpkin decorating, use paint, tape, pins, fabric scraps, stickers or other items to allow each child to create a Halloween masterpiece. Visit ExtremePumpkins.com for free pumpkin carving patterns and tips for using power tools to carve extreme pumpkins.
Begin by deciding on a design for your pumpkin. You’ll want to do this before you visit your local pumpkin patch so you will choose the right shape pumpkin for your project.
Look for a pumpkin with a firm stem attached. Leave the stem on after you carve your pumpkin. The stem provides nutrition to help keep your pumpkin fresh longer.
Don’t carve your pumpkin too early or it will rot before Halloween arrives. Carved pumpkins normally last for less than a week. You can help your carved pumpkin last longer by keeping it cool and out of direct sunlight.
Use sharp tools for carving. A keyhole saw or miniature saw is perfect for carving through the surface of the pumpkin. You can make very intricate designs using a power drill and assorted drill bits.
Cut a hole in the top of the pumpkin if using a candle to light or in the bottom if using a string of lights. Gut the pumpkin, removing the flesh, seeds and pulp.
Download a template to use or draw your design on the pumpkin. Transfer the design to your pumpkin and carve it. You can buy a carving kit or use small hand or power tools.
Keep your pumpkin fresh by spraying with bleach or soaking in vinegar.
Halloween Photo Tips
There are lots of fun photo opportunities on Halloween. Raise your Halloween photo game with these tips from Nikon Ambassador and world renowned family photographer, Tamara Lackey.
- Take a few photographs of not just the trick or treating, but also the getting ready and the after moments. This will allow you to capture more of the feel of the entire experience of Halloween evening versus just the kids in their costumes. Sometimes the best photographs are those “after” moments, where kids get together to spill out all their candy, make trades with each other or just share stories from the night’s adventures.
- Encourage your children to act out the character they are dressed as and if applicable, shoot the action in burst mode. Example: If your son is Superman, have him leap off a bench in flying position and switch to shooting in a burst mode to ensure that you get at least one “flying” photo of him.
- Find an outdoor location where there are bright porch lights or a streetlamp, and turn off your flash. Ask your subjects to stay as still as possible, and shoot a few images where you are really showing off the ambient light of the evening. You may get a bit of a noisy, or grainy, image — but you’ll have captured more of the real mood of the evening.
Fire Safety Tips
According to the U.S. Fire Administration, there are 10,300 fires during the there-day period around Halloween. These fires cause about 25 deaths, 125 injuries and $83 million in property loss. The U.S. Fire Administration shares these fire safety tips to keep your family safe.
- Choose a costume without long trailing fabric. This can cause a child to trip or may touch flames in jack-o’-lanterns or other decorations.
- If you make your own costume, use materials that won’t catch on fire easily if they come in contact with heat or flame.
- Give your children flashlights or glow sticks so they can see where they are walking.
- Keep decorations away from candles, light bulbs or heaters.
- Consider using flameless candles or glow sticks in your jack-o’-lantern.
- Keep exits clear of decorations.
Halloween only comes around once a year, so why not go all out. Create unique crafts, plan party fun, bake a spooky cake or cookies and enjoy making trick-or-treat memories together.