Playing Preschool with Busy Toddler: Halloween Unit - 7 Days of Booo-kish Play

Updated: 3 days ago

A Companion to Busy Toddler's Playing Preschool Curriculum


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I don't know about you all, but I am so ready for Fall. I'm ready for a change of weather and that feeling when you walk out the door on a cool, crisp morning! When I look ahead to October, the first thing I think of is Halloween. It's too soon to tell yet if there will be any trick-or-treating this year, but that doesn't mean there won't be opportunities to celebrate.


We've been using Busy Toddler's Playing Preschool for our homeschool preschool curriculum, but I thought it would be fun to pair some bookish play with some of the activities on Busy Toddler's website. Feel free to use this as a model to create your own holiday units or be sure to subscribe to email to be notified when more units are added.


Here's hoping for a Happy Halloween!


Video

Five Little Pumpkins: Super Simple Songs

Song

I’m A Little Pumpkin (to the Tune of “I’m A Little Teapot”)

I’m a little pumpkin

Orange and round

Here is my stem

I grew in the ground

When I get all cut up

Don’t you shout!

Just open me up

And scoop me out


Supplies Needed

  • Pumpkins of various sizes

  • Dot Stickers

  • Painter’s Tape

  • Various Halloween Stickers

  • Washable Tempera Paint, including orange

  • Paintbrushes

  • Black Construction Paper

  • Tape (or double-sided tape)

  • Craft Sticks

  • Toilet Paper

  • Toilet Paper Roll

  • Paper Plate

  • Yarn

  • Ingredients to bake pumpkin bread (recipe included)

  • Spaghetti noodles or pinestraw

  • Candy Bars

  • Glue

  • Plastic Halloween Items

  • Sensory Bin


Suggested Books

5 Little Pumpkins - Yaccarino, Dan The Legend of Spookley the Square Pumpkin - Troiano, Joe Room on the Broom - Donaldson, Julia From Seed to Pumpkin - Pfeffer, Wendy

Pete the Cat: Trick or Pete - Dean, James

The Itsy-Bitsy Pumpkin - Sonali, Fry

Ten Little Mummies -Yates, Philip


Halloween Week - Day 1

Read Aloud: 5 Little Pumpkins - Yaccarino, Dan Things to Talk About: What words or pictures come to mind when you think about Halloween?

Learning Activity: Practice counting groups of five with Busy Toddler's Halloween I-spy Activity


Easy Activity: Paint and wash pumpkins for the fun of it like Busy Toddler's Painting Pumpkins activity



Book Substitutions:

Halloween Week - Day 2

Read Aloud: The Legend of Spookley the Square Pumpkin - Troiano, Joe Things to Talk About: What is the difference between a pumpkin and a jack-o-lantern? How do facial expressions convey emotions?

Learning Activity: Using black construction paper, cut out shapes of different sizes and ask your child to identify them. How many sides? Put some tape on the back and arrange the shapes on a pumpkin (or paint paper plates orange) to create different expressions of a jack-o-lantern (think emojis). Talk about how the emotion is being conveyed (eyebrows angled down is mad, eyebrows up is surprised).



Easy Activity: Draw pumpkins of different shapes on craft paper and have your child do Busy Toddler's Halloween Dot Stickers activity.



Book Substitutions:



Halloween Week - Day 3

Read Aloud: Room on the Broom - Donaldson, Julia Things to Talk About: Introduce vocabulary: sequence (the order of events) first, next, last.

Learning Activity: Practice sequencing and retelling the story using craft sticks and a paper towel roll as props. See Days with Grey's Story Retell Room on the Broom.

Easy Activity: Use spaghetti noodles or pinestraw to make a "broom" to use as a paintbrush and create a process art painting.

Book Substitutions:



Halloween Week - Day 4

Read Aloud: The Itsy-Bitsy Pumpkin - Sonali, Fry Things to Talk About: Comparing weights. Which is the heaviest? Which is the lightest?

Learning Activity: Pick up each pumpkin to feel its weight. Put them in order from heaviest to lightest. Use a food scale if you have one.

Easy Activity: Experiment with rolling pumpkins. Do they roll straight? Talk about whether they roll faster or slower, depending on their weight. Option to extend: Try pumpkin bowling!



Book Substitutions:



Halloween Week - Day 5

Read Aloud: Ten Little Mummies - Yates, Philip Things to Talk About: Introduce the idea of subtraction. Do not expect mastery. What does it mean to disappear? If we have 10 of something but we take one away, how many do we have?

Learning Activity: Tear off 10 squares of toilet paper and roll them lengthwise to be the “mummies” or use craft sticks. Make a 10 frame out of tape and put one “mummy” in each frame, counting as you go. Re-read the story, taking one mummy away with every turn of the page.

Easy Activity: Wrap your child in toilet paper like a mummy or set up Busy Toddler’s Halloween Sensory Bin: Dollar Store Items



Book Substitutions:



Halloween Week - Day 6

Read Aloud: From Seed to Pumpkin - Pfeffer, Wendy Things to Talk About: What are the parts of a pumpkin? What can we do/make with the parts of a pumpkin?

Learning Activity: Cut open a pumpkin and explore its parts. Make a model of what you see using a paper plate, orange paint, yarn and pumpkin seeds.



Easy Activity: Bake pumpkin bread. Suggested recipe: Downeast Main Pumpkin Bread

Book Substitutions:



Halloween Week - Day 7

Read Aloud: Pete the Cat: Trick or Pete - Dean, James Things to Talk About: What is your favorite part of Halloween? What do we do on Halloween night?

Learning Activity: Graphing Candy Bars with Busy Toddler’s Graphing Halloween Candy



Easy Activity: Make a collage using candy bar wrappers.

Book Substitutions:



I hope you enjoyed this week full of boo-kish fun with Busy's Toddler's activities! Stay tuned for more pairings of books and play for upcoming holidays!


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Visit my website to shop my Book Lists and discover more books based on your child's interest.


Next up: Playing Preschool with Busy Toddler: Thanksgiving Unit


See Also: An Introduction to Playing Preschool with Busy Toddler, A Day in the Life of Raising a Reader


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