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The History of Halloween for Kids

Looking for non-spooky Halloween lesson plans? How about a look at the history of Halloween! This is a great cross-curricular way to incorporate social studies into your celebration. Your students may go trick or treating, carve pumpkins, and dress up in costume, but do they know how these traditions started? Halloween did not originate in America, yet we celebrate it annually.

I created a fun and informational slide show that covers the origins of this holiday and looks at cultural traditions around the world. I’ve included graphic organizers for upper elementary, and a mini book for younger grades in which students fill in the information as the teacher goes over the slide show. The mini book can be included in a book bag for further reading. I've also included a full version of the informational mini book that is perfect for small reading groups.

Students learn about the ancient festival of Samhain, ancient festival activities (many of which continue today), guising and the purpose of costumes, how Halloween became spooky and more. The PowerPoint includes images that are kid-friendly. I've made the slide show EDITABLE, so you can change out images as needed.

Because Halloween originated in Europe, this lesson covers how this holiday tradition made its way to America. Primary source images are included in the PowerPoint slide show to give students a better understanding of some of the Halloween parties in years past.

As well, students learn about similar autumn traditions around the world, including in places like England, the Philippines, Mexico, France, and All Saints Day.

You can check out the details for this resource here: History of Halloween


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