October is many things to many people. To those in the northern hemisphere, it is the epitome of autumn; in the southern half of the world, it is the crown jewel of spring. It is the month of the hunter’s moon, when constellations Libra and Scorpio reign over the skies. In some countries, such as Cyprus and Nigeria, it is a time to celebrate independence, while in others, October is a time to honor unity and peace.
But of course, you can’t talk about the eighth month of the calendar here in America without talking about All Hallow’s Eve. Though many of us adults still enjoy it to its fullest, Halloween is in many ways the perfect holiday for kids. Playing dress-up, eating candy, hanging out with friends and telling spooky stories—what’s not to like? Your students will no doubt have trick-or-treating on the brain all day—so instead of letting that be a distraction from their studies, harness that pent-up energy and engage it with these fun Halloween writing activities for 2nd grade!
Writing Activity #1: Jack Talks Back!
This writing activity involves a little bit of anthropomorphization and a lot of imagination. Ask your kids to picture a jack-o-lantern in their minds, either one that they’ve seen or carved in the past or one they’d like to make this year. What would happen if that jack-o-lantern came alive and started to talk? What sort of things would a pumpkin have to say? Would one with an angry face be grumpy? Could a silly face hide a dark secret? Encourage your 2nd graders to really bring their jack-o-lanterns to life with their words!
Writing Activity #2: A Sweet Defense
This Halloween writing activity is a classic exercise in opinion writing. Discuss the wide variety of candy that’s given out each year to trick-or-treaters on the big night. Come up with as many different kinds as you can! Then, ask them to choose their favorite and write about why that candy is the best Halloween candy around. For those rare students who don’t like candy (or can’t have any), ask them to write about something else people could give out instead—and why it would be an even better Halloween treat.
Writing Activity #3: A Bat, a Cat, and a Rat
Screeching bats, hissing black cats and scurrying rats are staples of the Halloween scene. For this open-ended narrative writing activity, ask your 2nd grade students to imagine all three of these creatures meeting up at midnight one dark and stormy Halloween night. Why have they crossed paths—and what happens next? Only your students know!
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Celebrating the Spirit of Halloween With Your 2nd Graders
As a certain redhead named Anne once said in an L.M. Montgomery novel, “I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.” It’s truly a magical time of the year—one which is perfect for bringing out the best in your young authors-to-be, whether they’re writing about talking pumpkins, sweet treats or a gathering of the creatures of the night.
A time of storytelling and transformations, of winking eyes and glowing grins to light the way in the darkness, the spirit of Halloween is, above all, a creative spirit. There’s no trick more impressive, or treat more enjoyable, than celebrating that spirit by doing something, well, creative! Writing and publishing a book with your students gives them both a keepsake and memories they’ll be able to enjoy long after the last of this year’s candy corn is chewed and swallowed and the last jack-o-lantern’s light blown out.
Whether you’re looking for more Halloween fun for the classroom or simply more creative writing activities for your students, be sure to treat yourself to the free resources in our online teacher’s lounge and sign up today for your free publishing kit!