So it’s that spooky, hair-raising, gruesome, spine-chilling, skeleton-filled time of the year again! Halloween is normally lots of fun for the children (albeit older ones – 4+) because it involves dressing up, trick-or-treating and eating lots of sweets afterwards.
However, Halloween it’s more than that and you can make it more fun for the kids, creating long lasting memory or even a household tradition that they can do year after year.
Depending on their age, here are some ideas to teach children what Halloween is really about:
1. Explain to them the history behind this holiday. Our modern Halloween celebrations have their origins in the medieval Christianity, however some traditions have their roots in Samhain which was an old Irish festival that celebrated the dead and the beginning of the New Year (using the ancient Celtic calendar) and the start of a long, cold winter.
The origins of trick or treating – they began in the Middle ages when poor children and adults where going from door to door beginning for food and money in exchange of a prayer being said for the giver’s soul. The origins of costumes – again, people started wearing costumes around 1585 (but it might have been before this) and they did that to keep the ghosts and all the bad evils away from them. The history of jack o’ lanterns (which originally they were hollowed -out turnips, not pumpkins) According to folklore, there was a man called Jack who tried to trick the Devil and when he died who was not allowed to enter Heaven or Hell but he was punished to wander around in the dark only with a coal to light up his way. That is why he put the coal inside a carved out turnip and has been roaming the Earth ever since.
2. Take them to see the Harry Potter set which will have a Halloween makeover this year – 1st of Oct to 12th of Nov
3. Visit Hampton Court Palace to see some of the most gruesome jobs that were ever done 21st – 29th of Oct
4. Go to Eltham Palace for the best costume competition, creepy crafts and pumpkin carving sessions 23rd-27th of Oct
5. Visit the Museum of London for a night of torchlit tours, scary surprises and even a Halloween sleepover – 27th of Oct
6. Take them to do Boo at the London Zoo this half term
If you decide to stay at home, there are a few other fun things that you co do, such as:
7. Halloween arts and crafts: creating bats, monsters, skeletons, witches, jack-o-lanterns using felt, paper, glue, ribbons etc. Pinterest is a great resource to use for this.
8. Halloween games: you can find some fun ones here but again on Pinterest and Google, you will find lots of other ones.
9. Face Painting: this is so much fun especially if you go trick-or-treating in the evening
10. Halloween cooking with the kids. Click here and get 14 spooky recipes!
And if all this is not enough, then you can arrange your own kids Halloween party and combine all these ideas, having the spookiest, weirdest, most unearthly party in the kids Halloween history!
Happy Halloween everyone!
And if you are looking for a job right now (or if you have a friend who is looking), at Polo and Tweed, we do our best to match our lovely nannies with our great families, so please do not hesitate to register with us today.