Fall is in full swing and that means the time-honoured tradition of Halloween is approaching. Whether is it trick or treating or getting dressed up, Halloween is a fun activities for any family.
It is also a wonderful opportunity to incorporate math learning opportunities.
Our team of elementary math tutors has put together this wonderful list of Halloween math games:
1) Candy Math Game: Place a small sticker at the bottom of the candy with a math question. You can vary the questions depending on the age of the student. Turn the candy over and if your child answers the question correctly, they get to keep the candy.
2) Use pieces of candy as math manipulatives can be a lot of fun. A complex concept can be a lot easier from being able to hold number concepts in your hand.
3) Sorting and Counting: For younger kids, have them sort their candy and then use it as an opportunity to learn how to count.
4) Guessing Game: Each person guesses how much candy they have in their bag at the end of the night. If you have enough people you can even graph it.
5) Pumpkin pie and fractions. Bake or purchase a pumpkin pie and slice it up to learn about fractions.
With Halloween on the horizon, trick or treating etiquette is on the minds of many families. We consulted Mabel’s Label’s co-founder and parenting expert, Julie Cole, to share her wisdom on the subject. After all, she has six kids between the ages of 8 and 17 who will be trick or treating this year.
Here are three of Julie’s Halloween tips to ensure this evening is safe, inclusive and respectful of all kids.
Welcome all kids – If you decide to participate in Halloween then welcome kids of all ages and hand over the candy. Remember that kids are unique and come in all shapes and sizes. Some children may want to participate, but choose not to wear a costume. Kids with sensory integration issues can’t wear costumes as they are sensitive to the feel of them. We don’t know what issues kids have who come to our doors, and it’s not our job to judge. So just give the candy without judgement!
Consider the Teal Pumpkin Project – Many families are opting to participate in the Teal Pumpkin Project by having a teal-coloured pumpkin and handing out non-food items. This movement is to acknowledge kids with severe food allergies and to ensure they feel safe and part of Halloween. Julie advises families who want to participate to get a teal pumpkin at a craft store or to spray paint a pumpkin. Non-food treats like stickers and crayons can be purchased at your local dollar store.
Keep kids safe – Ensure your children are wearing costumes that fit them and visible clothing with reflective gear. With potential for separation, consider Mabel’s Labels kids’ safety bracelets for this special night and other occasions where your little ones may wander off. These wrist bands can be customized with parents’ cell phones numbers in case kids get excited and lose their way.