By: Courtney Newman
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Many of us begin the homeschool year filled with excitement, but after a few months, we may find ourselves running out of steam. If we feel that way as homeschooling parents, you can bet our kids are feeling the strain as well! Thankfully, adding a little twist to our homeschool curriculum, such as Halloween-related science projects, can be the perfect way to revive excitement and motivation! That’s why we love looking for fun themes and related activities wherever possible. Thanks to homeschooling, we can mix it up however we like!
The world seems to come alive in October with the change of seasons, and taking advantage of this magical time in our homeschool can be a great way to keep up the interest and “morale” of your children! As we approach Halloween, what better time to bring out a few spooky books and activities to liven things up a little? However, in typical homeschool fashion, these crafts and projects are literature-inspired!
10 Halloween Books & Science Activities for Kids
Every October, I love searching through Pinterest for Halloween-inspired crafts and activities. It’s such a fun way to get excited for the holiday and just enjoy this time of year! However, when I look through Goodreads or even just conduct a Google search for Halloween books, I’m always looking for titles that aren’t too scary. These days, it seems like all the Halloween entertainment is about being as terrified as possible. While that does have its place with Halloween, sometimes I just want something that’s cute-spooky, not frightening, if that makes sense.
If you feel the same way, then you’ll like this list, because I’ve grabbed ten cute, Halloween-themed books, along with accompanying Halloween science projects!
- We’re Going on a Ghost Hunt by Susan Pearson
- “Susan Pearson has written her own unique version of the popular song, “We’re Going on a Bear Hunt,” introducing four children who go out at night in search of a ghost. After squish-squash-squooshing through a swamp, rustle-rustle-rat-a-tattling through a cornfield, and overcoming all kinds of obstacles on their journey, they come face to face with a ghost in a graveyard. Then—RUN! RUN! RUN!—they race back to the safety of their warm, cozy house.”
- Big Pumpkin by Erica Silverman
- “The witch has grown the biggest pumpkin ever, and now she wants to make herself a pumpkin pie for Halloween. But the pumpkin is so big she can’t get it off the vine. It’s so big the ghost can’t move it, either. Neither can the vampire, nor the mummy. It looks as if there’ll be no pumpkin pie for Halloween, until along comes the bat with an idea to save the day. How can the tiny bat succeed where bigger and strong spooky creatures have failed? You’ll be surprised!”
- Dem Bones by Bob Barner
- “Sing along with a colorful skeleton band in this exuberant rendition of a traditional most-loved African-American spiritual, passed down by word of mouth for generations. Today, it’s usually sung by children as a way to learn anatomy, rhyme, and language. With its vibrant paper collage illustrations and rollicking read-aloud verse, this perfect introduction to the human body makes a wonderful addition to both home and classroom libraries, and is a fun treat for Halloween!”
- Ghosts in the House by Kazuno Kohara
- “At the edge of town lives a clever girl with a spooky problem: Her house is haunted! Luckily, she happens to be a witch and knows a little something about taking care of ghosts. She catches them, puts them in the washing machine, airs them out to dry, and gives them new lives as sofa covers, table cloths, and, of course, bedsheets to cozy up under. Fresh and charming illustrations in dynamic orange, black and white bring this resourceful heroine and these spooky ghosts to life.”
- There Was An Old Lady Who Swallowed a Bat by Lucille Colandro
- “This spooky twist on the wildly popular “There Was an Old Lady who Swallowed a Fly” is perfect for fun Halloween reading! What won’t this old lady swallow? This time around, a bat, an owl, a cat, a ghost, a goblin, some bones, and a wizard are all on the menu! This Halloween-themed twist on the classic “little old lady” books will delight and entertain all brave readers who dare to read it!”
- Room on the Broom by Julia Donaldson
- “The witch and her cat are happily flying through the sky on a broomstick when the wind picks up and blows away the witch’s hat, then her bow, and then her wand! Luckily, three helpful animals find the missing items, and all they want in return is a ride on the broom. But is there room on the broom for so many friends? And when disaster strikes, will they be able to save the witch from a hungry dragon?”
- What’s in the Witch’s Kitchen? by Nick Sharratt
- “The witch has hidden a trick and a treat in her magical kitchen cupboards! Which one you find depends on how you open the doors. Whether it’s frogspawn or popcorn, lollipops or rabbit plops, there are hilarious rhymes to discover inside in this innovative new novelty book from Nick Sharratt. Perfect for children to read again and again, this spooky title is great not only for Halloween but all year round.”
- Click, Clack, Boo! by Doreen Cronin
- “Farmer Brown does not like Halloween. So he draws the shades, puts on his footy pajamas, and climbs into bed. But do you think the barnyard animals have any respect for a man in footy pajamas? No, they do not. For them, the Halloween party has just begun. And we all know these critters far prefer tricks over treats. There are big surprises in store for Farmer Brown!”
- The Foggy, Foggy Forest by Nick Sharratt
- “Who’s lurking in the foggy forest? Look through the trees and guess the shapes to find out! What can that be in the foggy, foggy forest? Whether it’s a fairy queen on a trampoline, three brown bears on picnic chairs, or an ogre doing yoga, children will love trying to guess what each foggy silhouette will be. Take a trip through the mysterious misty landscape – hilarious fairytale fun lies around every corner.”
- And Then Comes Halloween by Tom Brenner
- “As soon as geese fly south, children take autumn’s cue to start their preparations: it’s almost Halloween! With poetic language and vivid collage illustrations, Tom Brenner and Holly Meade follow all the familiar rituals, from hanging paper skeletons to carving pumpkins, from costume-making to trick-or-treating. Halloween lovers will be eager to join them on this lively and lyrical journey.”
October offers a myriad of opportunities for children and their parents alike! Take advantage of the fun outdoor activities like a fall walk, pumpkin picking, and going on a hayride. Then, once the weather turns brisk and chilly, curl up on the couch with a hot beverage and enjoy these Halloween activities for kids with spooky and captivating books! Combining education with fun is the most effective way to learn, and it creates the best memories.
We hope this list gave you several books and projects to enjoy this autumn! Do you have any other favorite books and activity pairings for this time of year? Share them with us in the comments below!