Halloween is getting closer and one of our favorite things to do is celebrate the holiday with friends! If you have little ones, how about gathering some of their buddies together for a morning of learning and fun? With some simple dollar store materials, you could host a Halloween tot school!
Tray activities are great for one or two children to work together on (or a mom and tot). We leave them set up and always leave the tray in the condition it was found (hopefully ready to go!).
Put out some boxes or spice containers or pouches and you’ve created an open and close tray! I add a Halloween element by hiding “spooky” objects inside each one (a spider, a tiny pumpkin, a small gourd).
I grabbed a paint tray, a pair of tweezers, and a bowl of tiny plastic pumpkins (available at dollar stores or craft stores). The tot has to transfer one pumpkin to each well of the paint tray. Add a challenging element by having the kiddo pattern the pumpkins by color in the tray.
With a pipe cleaner cut in half and a bowl of pony beads, kids can make Halloween bracelets! It’s a great fine motor activity, and as above, you can add in the patterning element if your tot is ready. Plus, kids always love to be able to walk away with a creation!
I always pick up these plastic food trays at the dollar store because they’re great for sorting (I just cover up the busy character pictures with a piece of taped paper). For this tray, I put some acorns, bats, and skulls that the kids can sort in each of the wells.
This pumpkin ice cube mold and the plastic tongs are both from The Dollar Tree. I paired them with some tiny plastic acorns for a great transferring activity!
Put out two pitchers (these are small pitchers that I’ve thrifted) and fill one with dried beans or peas. The kids can practice pouring back and forth (always a big hit!).
Kids love to craft so we used black construction paper, cotton balls, and glue to make ghosts! The mamas traced a ghost shape on paper with white chalk and the tots glued cotton balls on. We topped it off with jumbo googly eyes!
If your group is ready, try a collection project! We did a graph together; I had pre-drawn the graph and had the objects ready (erasers, beads, and plastic items). We worked together to graph them and then used words like “most” and “least” to describe the groups!
With all this learning, we had to add in some sensory fun, too! I filled our sand and water table with rice and beans and added in some Halloween trinkets from The Dollar Tree. With measuring cups and fingers, it’s a delightfully fun experience!
So what do you think? Could you host a Halloween tot school for your little one and their friends? I promise it’ll be fun!
Written by Jill