History of Halloween Lesson Plan
Created by: Created by Michael Bowman, 3L Place, October 2017
Applies to: Understanding and Participating in Community
Purpose: Introduce Members to the ancient historical roots of Halloween.
- Provide historical background on Halloween.
- Explore Members’ level of interest in celebrating Halloween as children and now as adults.
- Hand out candy to neighborhood Trick or Treaters on Halloween night.
- Pens, pencils, markers etc.
- iPad, computer or smart board
- Halloween candy
- Jack-o-Lantern worksheet (see attached)
- History worksheet (see attached)
Note: Halloween can be a triggering event for people with intellectual disabilities and developmental disabilities due to how overwhelming it can be to the sensory system. This includes the different types of candy and foods, scary imagery, bright lights, loud noises, and past bad experiences as well as other Halloween-associated items and themes. Please approach this with caution and with the safety and well-being of your member(s) in mind.
- Watch National Geographic: Halloween History - 4 minute video
- Watch History Channel: The History of Halloween - for 15 minute history of Halloween.
- Read and complete worksheets at table (If Members like to color, google and print “Halloween coloring” pages)
- Discuss Member’s enthusiasm or phobias related to past experiences of Halloween activities
- For Members who experience Halloween phobias, discuss the possibility that these phobias might be triggered by Halloween related activities or by Halloween activities that take place outside of 3L hours.
- Discuss the concept that things that frightened us as kids do not always scare us as adults.
- If phobias are likely to be triggered by any Halloween activities, make a plan so that Member can either opt of activity or take part in a way that feels safe for them.
- Watch “Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” or “Nightmare Before Christmas” (Netflix)
- On Halloween night, hand out candy to Trick or Treaters
- After Halloween is over, reconnect in a discussion around whether to not Halloween was as triggering this year as it has been in the past.
- Brainstorm how to grow from what we have learned about Member’s Halloween phobias so that we can do better next year.
- If there is time, design own Jack O Lantern face from worksheet.
If time allows, there are several long form documentaries on the history of Halloween available on YouTube