Pumpkin Deep Breathing Exercise for Halloween Mindfulness

Pumpkin deep breathing exercise

This Pumpkin Deep Breathing Exercise is the very first visual breathing tool that we created here on the website. We now have many more deep breathing exercises designed to support self-regulation, mindfulness, and brain break needs. We’ve recently updated this Halloween mindfulness activity to include more information on WHY this pumpkin deep breathing strategy works. We’ve also updated the printable to include a pumpkin breathing poster and a pumpkin mindfulness coloring page! This printable deep breathing exercise is a great Halloween Mindfulness mindfulness activity.

You can get both below or access them in our Member’s Club.

Pumpkin Deep breathing exercise

Pumpkin Deep Breathing Exercise

This Halloween activity is one that I came up with while thinking about our recent Halloween Occupational Therapy activities post. So often, we see kids who struggle with coping strategies and require tools to improve self regulation.

This can occur at school or at home. What if we could combine a child’s interest in all things Halloween with a deep breathing exercise that can be used as a coping strategy, or a calm down activity?

That’s where this pumpkin deep breathing exercise comes in.

This deep breathing exercise uses a pumpkin for a coping strategy for kids that is a calm down strategy this Halloween.

Halloween Mindfulness Activity

We’ve created many breathing exercises to calm down kids (and adults) here on the website, and this pumpkin themed mindfulness strategy is just one of the tools in the toolbox.

So often, parents and teachers ask for strategies to use as a coping mechanism. When kids have coping tools in their toolbox for addressing sensory needs, worries, and getting to that “just right” state of regulation, a self-reflective state can occur.

Addressing specific needs like sensory overload, worries or anxiety, fears, or nervousness can be as simple as having a set of sensory coping strategies on hand. One way to do this is using mindfulness and positive coping skills like this deep breathing exercises.

Using deep breathing exercises to support mindfulness and coping skills works for several reasons:

  • When kids are taught about how their body feels and reacts in certain situations, they can self-reflect on past responses.
  • They can better understand who they are and how their body reacts to stressful or sensory situations.
  • By better understanding their states of regulation, they can be mindful of things that may set them off, but better yet, know how to respond.
  • Having a coping strategy on hand can set them up for success in learning or social situations.

Practicing mindfulness activities and coping strategies can be powerful for kids!

Mindfulness is the ability and awareness of thoughts, feelings, and sensations as our body responds or reacts in thought, feeling, and sensations. Mindfulness is being present in the moment in any given situation with full awareness of inward and outward sensations. Practicing mindful awareness through deep breathing exercises is one way to notice how our body is reacting in a given moment and provides a tool to reset. Coping skills for kids may include deep breathing as just one strategy.

Here are some mindfulness videos on YouTube to help kids better understand what coping strategies and mindfulness in action looks and feels like.

Deep breathing acts as a coping tactic and a calming activity. It’s an easy coping strategy for kids because taking deep breaths with mindful breathing can be done anywhere and without any equipment.

Taking controlled breaths with deep breathing can give kids a sense of control that helps them rest and address self-regulation or emotional regulation when they are upset, worried, or feel a need to calm down.

Halloween Breathing Exercise

So now that we’ve covered deep breathing and why it’s a helpful coping strategy for kids, let’s talk about a fun Halloween themed coping strategy that kids will love to try.

The deep breathing printable activity uses a simple picture of a pumpkin, but you can use a real pumpkin, too.

Use a real pumpkin for more sensory benefits.

The small decorative gourds or pie pumpkins are perfect for this activity, because kids can hold the small pumpkin in their hands and feel the weight of the pumpkin as they complete the breathing strategy.

  1. Hold a small pumpkin in the palm of your hand.
  2. Use your pointer finger of your other hand to slowly trace up a ridge and breathe in.
  3. Then trace down another ridge and breathe out.
  4. Continue tracing the ridges of the pumpkin while deeply breathing in and out.

Take the breathing exercise a step further by trace the lines up toward the stem while taking a deep breath in. Hold the breath for a few seconds and then trace a line down another section of the pumpkin while slowly breathing out. Hold that breath for a few seconds. Repeat this process as you slowly trace up and down the sections of the pumpkin.

What’s happening with this pumpkin breathing exercise?

Several sensory systems are at work here when using a real pumpkin in this Halloween mindfulness strategy:

Heavy Work- The weight of the pumpkin on the arches of the palm of the hand= PROPRIOCEPTIVE sensory system.

Calming Tactile Cues- Engaging the tactile sensory system to trace the ridges of a smooth surface. Think about how some individuals like rubbing specific textures like a silky blanket or the calming strips of a fidget tool. Running a finger along the groove of a smooth pumpkin surface engages that calming tactile input.

Belly Breathing- Deep breaths combined with a visual focus offers proprioceptive input through the lungs and diaphragm. Engage belly breathing by taking in fully breaths to fully engage the lungs. Then hold the breath for a second or two before releasing the breath. When belly breathing is engaged, the lungs continue to expand for a moment and add further pressure throughout the ribcage and internal organs. This breath control evokes the interoceptive system.

Bilateral Coordination- When holding the pumpkin and tracing with a finger on the other hand, both sides of the body are at work in a coordinated manner, otherwise known as bilateral coordination. Holding the pumpkin with one hand and tracing with the other hand engages bilateral use of both sides of the body.

Whether you are using a pumpkin picture or real pumpkin, show kids how to use deep breathing as a coping tool by taking calming breaths while they trace the lines of the pumpkin.

Pumpkin deep breathing poster and coloring page
Pumpkin deep breathing poster and coloring page

Halloween Deep Breathing Poster

In this newest update to our calming breathing exercise, we created both a pumpkin deep breathing poster and a coloring page.

  1. The poster can be printed out and hung in a classroom, therapy clinic or home.

2. Use the deep breathing exercise as a brain break during the month of October.

3. It’s a great tool for using during Halloween parties as a therapist- approved activity that supports underlying needs, too.

4. Many times, children can become overstimulated during classroom Halloween parties, and the days leading up to Halloween. Use the pumpkin deep breathing visual as a tool for the whole classroom to organize their sensory systems and focus on the learning that still needs to happen.

5. This printable page is full color and makes a great addition to a calm down corner this time of year.

6. You can even add the pumpkin breathing poster to our Fall Sensory Stations, and include this in a hallway or therapy clinic this time of year.

7. One final way to use this pumpkin mindfulness exercise is during the actual trick or treating. Kids with sensory or self-regulation needs can become overstimulated during trick or treating on Halloween. There is a lot of sensory stimulation out there! From lights, to fog machines, children running in the streets, and lots of strangers in the neighborhood, trick-or-treating is an overloading environment for many kids and adults! Print off a copy of this pumpkin deep breathing tool and use it calm down, engage focused breathing strategies, and cope as needed!

Pumpkin Breathing Coloring Page

In the new download below, you’ll also find a page that is a pumpkin breathing coloring page. We know there are many benefits of coloring and one is the calming ability that coloring has.

Adding heavy work by coloring in pages can be a great way to calm the sensory system through heavy work in the hands.

Print off the coloring page and use it in several ways this time of year:

  • Color in at occupational therapy sessions
  • Use as a whole class activity
  • Kids can color in the breathing exercise page and use them as individual brain break tools
  • Hang the coloring page on a bulletin board for Halloween that explains sensory self-regulation strategies
  • Include in a Halloween party
Use a pumpkin as a deep breathing exercise for a coping strategy for kids.

This printable Halloween mindfulness activity supports coping needs.

Free Pumpkin Deep Breathing Exercise

Want to get this free Pumpkin breathing exercise in both a color Poster format AND a coloring page? You’ve got it! Just enter your email address into the form below to access both printable pages.

This resource is also inside our Member’s Club. Members can log into their accounts and download the file directly without the need to enter an email address. The printable pages are located on our Pumpkin Therapy Theme page and our Mindfulness Toolbox.

Not a member of the Member’s Club yet? JOIN US HERE.

Pumpkin Deep Breathing Exercise

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    Grab the Pumpkin Fine Motor Kit for more coloring, cutting, and eye-hand coordination activities with a Pumpkin theme! It includes:

    • 7 digital products that can be used any time of year- has a “pumpkins” theme
    • 5 pumpkin scissor skills cutting strips
    • Pumpkin scissor skills shapes- use in sensory bins, math, sorting, pattern activities
    • 2 pumpkin visual perception mazes with writing activity
    • Pumpkin “I Spy” sheet – color in the outline shapes to build pencil control and fine motor strength
    • Pumpkin Lacing cards – print, color, and hole punch to build bilateral coordination skills
    • 2 Pumpkin theme handwriting pages – single and double rule bold lined paper for handwriting practice

    Work on underlying fine motor and visual motor integration skills so you can help students excel in handwriting, learning, and motor skill development.

    You can grab this Pumpkin Fine Motor kit for just $6!

    Halloween Mindfulness Activities

    Use this printable pumpkin deep breathing exercise as a Halloween mindfulness activity. Other printable Halloween mindfulness activities include:

    Halloween Hand Breathing Technique

    We also have a new deep breathing exercise for the Fall or Halloween season. If using a printable to achieve Halloween coping skills isn’t ideal (sometimes you don’t have the printable version with you…or for some kids it might be hard for them to picture a pumpkin as they are coping with some self-regulation needs…), then having another tool in your toolbox is a must.

    We’ve come up with a Halloween Hand Breathing Technique to fit the bill!

    All you need is your hands and fingers to using this hand tracing breathing strategy.

    We talk a bit about using the Hand Breathing Technique for a self-reset to address coping skills, mindset, offset worries or anxiety, and as a deep breathing strategy.

    Check out our video over on YouTube, or you can see it below. If you can’t view the video due to blockers on your computer or device, check out our Pumpkin Hand Breathing Technique over on YouTube.

    To complete the Halloween Hand breathing technique, you can use the same pumpkin deep breathing strategy, but trace a pumpkin on the palm of your hand. We also included a pumpkin tracing task to create a motor plan for the pumpkin shape that is incorporated with deep breaths in and out.

    Have fun!

    Colleen Beck, OTR/L has been an occupational therapist since 2000, working in school-based, hand therapy, outpatient peds, EI, and SNF. Colleen created The OT Toolbox to inspire therapists, teachers, and parents with easy and fun tools to help children thrive. Read her story about going from an OT making $3/hour (after paying for kids’ childcare) to a full-time OT resource creator for millions of readers. Want to collaborate? Send an email to contact@theottoolbox.com.

    Spider Activities

    spider activities

    This time of year, spider activities are a fun way to learn, develop skills through a a weekly occupational therapy theme, and even use in an occupational therapy or classroom Halloween Party ideas! Here, we’ve got you covered on all things spiders…spider crafts, spider fine motor activities, spider gross motor, spider tasks, and even spider themed foods!

    Spider Activities

    Kids love the fall activities and the themes that come with the season. With festivals, trick or treating, and classroom parties, kiddos will soon be into all things fall and Halloween.  In fact, if you are looking for Halloween occupational therapy activities, then these spider activity ideas fit right into the season.

    With this seasonal fun, kids will love engaging in some spider activities galore.

    Whether doing crafts, motor activities, or sensory breaks, children will find these spider activities intriguing and adults will find them exceptionally skill building. So, it’s a win-win for all!  

    We certainly have you covered with all kinds of creepy, crawly activities with this activity round-up. 

    In this post, you’ll find a myriad activity ideas that can help address so many great skills with kids. Do you need fine motor or gross motor activities? We’ve got you covered. Are you looking for skill-building arts and crafts?  We’ve got you covered. Are you needing sensory goodies to work on tactile skills or to provide a sensory break? We’ve got them! Do you want some fun snack ideas for a classroom party?  Check out the ideas below. 

    Spider Fine Motor Activities 

    Use these Spider fine motor activities to build stronger hands, intrinsic hand strength, dexterity to manipulate tools like crayons, glue bottles, scissors, clothespins, and more.

    Spider Gross Motor Activities

    These spider gross motor activities support development of balance, coordination, stability, endurance, position changes, and motor planning with large muscle groups. Include these activities in Halloween obstacle courses and even Halloween parties!

    Spider Crafts

    These spider crafts, spider art activities are fun ways to paint, and craft this time of year. Use the spider crafts to build executive functioning skills, like working memory, organization, direction following, planning, prioritization, and more.

    While making the spider crafts, kids also develop fine motor skills and sensory input through the tactile sense.

    Spider Sensory Activities

    These spider sensory activities are fun ways to challenge the tactile sense, but also add sensory input through the vestibular, proprioceptive sense, and visual sense. Add these activities to a sensory diet this time of year, or use as a brain break with sensory input.

    Spider Snacks

    Kids can help to make these spider snacks as a way to develop executive functioning skills.

    We hope that you have found these ideas perfect to make your October lesson planning a little easier and whole lotta spidery skill-packed fun!

    Spider Activity Clip Cards
    Spider Activity Clip Cards-free download!

    Free Spider Activity Cards

    These spider activity cards are designed to promote additional skills:

    • Bilateral coordination
    • Crossing midline
    • Eye-hand coordination
    • Pinch and grip strength
    • Hand strength
    • Visual perception
    • Scissor skills
    • Coloring skills
    • and more

    Want to get a free set of these spider activity cards? Enter your email address into the form below to access this free download. This printable is also available inside The OT Toolbox Member’s Club. Members can log into their account and access the PDF on our Halloween Therapy Theme page.

    Free Spider Activity Clip Cards

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      More Spider Activities

      With the Halloween Therapy Kit, you’ll find spider activities, but also all kinds of Halloween motor skills, scissor skills tasks, and fine and gross motor activities.

      Get more Halloween therapy tools including spider activities to support development using the Halloween Therapy Kit!

      Regina Allen

      Regina Parsons-Allen is a school-based certified occupational therapy assistant. She has a pediatrics practice area of emphasis from the NBCOT. She graduated from the OTA program at Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute in Hudson, North Carolina with an A.A.S degree in occupational therapy assistant. She has been practicing occupational therapy in the same school district for 20 years. She loves her children, husband, OT, working with children and teaching Sunday school. She is passionate about engaging, empowering, and enabling children to reach their maximum potential in ALL of their occupations as well assuring them that God loves them!

      Bat Template Fine Motor Activity

      Bat stencil template

      This bat template is a fine motor activity, perfect for building motor skills with a Halloween twist. Use the bat printable as a stencil to cut out, trace, and then use in fine motor work. Add this to your Halloween occupational therapy activities!

      Bat Template

      Fall is here and that means it’s time to pull out the Halloween crafts! This bat Halloween craft is a favorite in our house, and it’s actually a fun way to celebrate Halloween with kids without spooky decorations.

      We also used this bat template in a Stellaluna activity that also challenged visual processing skills. Be sure to check that activity out for another way to use this printable bat stencil.

      The nice thing about using our bat template is that it becomes an open-ended Halloween craft idea is one that doesn’t need a lot of materials. In fact, it’s a simple craft idea that is big on the fine motor skill development! When kids make this bat craft, they will be boosting skills such as fine motor strength and dexterity in a big way.

      For more Halloween craft ideas, check out some of the ideas at the bottom of this post…it’s the perfect addition if you’re looking for Halloween crafts for toddlers or Halloween crafts for preschool parties.

      Related, check out these spider activities for more spooky but fun ideas.

      Printable bat stencil to use in fine motor crafts for Halloween

      Bat Template Craft

      We made this bat craft with a fun sensory twist.  And, since we have a certain second grader that is cursive handwriting obsessed, we decided to add a cursive handwriting twist to this activity.  This activity could work to help kids with letter formation of upper case letters, lowercase letters, or numbers too. The possibilities are endless. 

      We arranged the bat template so you can print out one bat printable page and then get 3 bats from the one page.

      Or, if you are using the bat templates with a group of kids like in a classroom Halloween party activity, you can easily cut the bat template page into three sections with one bat stencil for each child.

      This post contains affiliate links.

      Cut out bat template and trace onto black paper with yarn

      Bat Printable

      To make your bat craft, you’ll need just a few materials.

      Amazon Affiliate links are included.

      • Bat printable (get your copy below)
      • black cardstock 
      • black yarn 
      • Glue 
      • Scissors (THIS is my favorite brand and the ones that I always recommended as an Occupational Therapist!)
      • Pencil or marker

      This is a great Halloween craft for preschoolers because it’s a fantastic way to work on scissor skills with a Halloween activity.

      Make the Bat Template

      1. First print out the Pat printable onto printer paper.
      2. Cut out the bat templates on the page. Each template has three bats. Students can cut out the bat printable or the adult can do this as preparation work.
      3. Trace the bat template onto cardstock or black construction paper. This is another good task for students to do as tracing the bat template supports development of bilateral coordination skills, eye-hand coordination, crossing midline, and pencil control skills.  
      4. Cut out the bat template.

      Kids can cut out the shape using their Scissors for great scissor skill work.  The bat shape is a complex cutting shape and can be done by Elementary aged students.  

      Cutting the angled wings and curves can be difficult, but by using the cardstock, kids will get a bit fore proprioceptive feedback from the thicker resistance of the paper material.  

      To make the task easier, cut wings without the jagged lines or use thicker cutting lines when you draw the bat shape.  

      Decorate the Bat Cutout

      Once you have the bat, you’ll need to cut pieces of the black yarn.  Have your child cut long or short pieces, it doesn’t really matter what length they wish to cut for their bat’s texture.  

      1. Cut black yarn for the bat cutout.

      Cutting the yarn is a great material to practice appropriate scissor positioning and bilateral hand coordination.  

      If a child is holding the scissors on an angle, cutting the yarn will be more difficult.  (You may see them trying to “saw” at the yarn!) Encourage them to hold the scissors straight up and down and the blades of the scissors at a 90 degree angle to the yarn.  You can find more of our Scissor Skills activities.

      Child dipping black yarn into glue to stick to the bat printable

      2. Next, pour some glue into a shallow dish or plate.  Show your child how to drag the yarn through the glue and get it nice and saturated with the glue.  Use both hands to pinch and “scrape” off excess glue from the piece of yarn.  

      3. Next, drape the black yarn on the bat shape.  You can let your child get as creative as they wish with this part.  Some might like to outline the bat shape and others, just pile it up on the bat.  

      4. Let the glue and yarn harden and you’ll have a textured bat craft to use in Halloween decorations this Fall.  You will have to wait for the glue to dry, probably overnight.

      Use the Bat Printable in Handwriting Practice

      Occupational therapy practitioners know the value of using a single activity or material to develop a variety of skill areas. That is the case with this bat printable…use it to work on handwriting skills too!

      We used those saturated yarn pieces to build cursive letters, but you could build printed letters as well, using our letter construction method.

      This would be an excellent way to practice cursive letter formation in our Creative Cursive handwriting journal activity.

      Make letters with yarn and decorate the bat printable.

      Use this Bat Craft for kids to work on letter formation of any kind. It’s a creative writing activity that they will be sure to remember. Work on forming individual letters, spelling sight words, or making Halloween words.

      Bat template and letters made with black yarn.

      Use the Bat Printable in Learning

      This would work as a very fun…and very sensory…classroom Halloween party idea or learning activity for this time of year, while working on team work skills, and learning components.

      1. Split kids up into teams. Give each team a collection of cut black yarn and a bowl of glue.
      2. Write a spelling word, or a Halloween word on the board or hold up a sign with a Halloween word.
      3. Each team has to work together to use the cut yarn and glue to spell the Halloween word on a piece of paper or cardboard.
      4. Once a team has completed the word, they have to hold up their paper or cardboard. The first team to spell the word with the letters sticking wins! (Too much glue or not enough glue will make this a fun race for Halloween parties for kids of all ages.)
      Use black yarn to decorate the bat printable template and then write words with black yarn.

      Build printed letters with the glue yarn, too.  We had a lot of fun with this Halloween craft and it was a hit with all of my kids…from preschool on up to grade school.

      Check out some of these other Halloween activities and crafts:

      Free Bat Template

      Want a copy of this free bat template printable? Enter your email address into the form below to get a copy of this Halloween printable. This activity is also available inside The OT Toolbox Member’s Club under our Bat Therapy Theme. Members can log in and get the bat template there without entering an email address. Not a member yet? Join us today.

      Free Bat Stencil

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        Colleen Beck, OTR/L has been an occupational therapist since 2000, working in school-based, hand therapy, outpatient peds, EI, and SNF. Colleen created The OT Toolbox to inspire therapists, teachers, and parents with easy and fun tools to help children thrive. Read her story about going from an OT making $3/hour (after paying for kids’ childcare) to a full-time OT resource creator for millions of readers. Want to collaborate? Send an email to contact@theottoolbox.com.

        Classroom Halloween Party Ideas

        Classroom Halloween party ideas

        This collection of classroom Halloween party ideas are from an old blog post here on the website, but they are fun and engaging Halloween ideas for a school party. When it comes to Halloween party activities, as an occupational therapist, I always encourage sensory motor skills, movement games, and play-based games. Because of this, you’ll want to start with our resource on Halloween occupational therapy activities because there you’ll find activities and ideas based on development and play, perfect for adding to a spooky classroom party! Check out the Halloween activities for elementary students below, too.

        Classroom Halloween party ideas

        Classroom Halloween Party Ideas

        all is in the air and that means Halloween is coming!  Halloween parties happen in preschool, playdates, the library, and even farms.  What better way to bring the whole family together than with a kid-friendly Halloween party? We’ve got tips and ideas for a frugal and fun Halloween party that you can use to play a school or play date party.  

        We’re excited to plan our fun and frugal kid-friendly Halloween parties.  We put together a family-friendly ghost game and spider craft using feature products from the celebration that would be a hit at any Halloween party.  

        Start with pumpkin breathing exercises to warm up (and sneak in some education on sensory deep breathing at the same time!)

        Halloween Party Ideas

        We love to add sensory motor benefits to party activities and the Halloween party ideas below do just that.
        We’ve included Halloween crafts, not-so-Spooky gross motor activities, Halloween worksheets, and Halloween I Spy games to support skill-building in a whole classroom setting.

        These Halloween party activities for the classroom would be great as a “push in” OT session where the therapy provider works with individuals in the classroom setting. Why not use the activities below with a small group or large groups setting while collaborating and consulting with the classroom teacher.

        I would start with our pumpkin deep breathing exercise, because it’s a great tool for many goal areas, including self regulation, fine motor skills, executive functioning skills, bilateral coordination, hand eye coordination, and more.

        You can start with a fine motor warm up…use our Halloween dexterity exercises as a handwriting warm up or as a fun way to get those fingers moving. Check out our video below…or you can catch it over on YouTube.

        Ghost Catch Game

        This Halloween game is great for elementary aged students, and a fun one for the whole classroom.

        Part of the ghost catch game is making the ghosts, so this can take up some time during the classroom Halloween party, but the fine motor benefits are great. Consider having a ghost-making station first. You’ll need just a few materials:

        • Boxes of tissues
        • Recycled paper
        • Rubber bands
        • Black marker

        To make the ghosts for the catch game, it’s actually very simple, but the fine motor skill development are high:

        1. Each student can have a small stack of recycled paper. Ask students to crumble up a ball of recycled paper. This is a great source for hand strengthening and gross grasp.
        2. Then, ask students to pull a facial tissue out of the box. This is an opportunity for eye-hand coordination and pinch strength as well as intrinsic muscle development of the arches of the hand.
        3. Show the students how to wrap the tissue around the recycled paper crumbled ball.
        4. Then, use a rubber band to secure the tissue around the crumbled paper. Allow part of the tissue to hang down like the trailing tail of a ghost. Providing the rubber band offers precision skills, pinch and grip strength as well as bilateral coordination skills.
        5. Finally, use a black marker to draw on a face.

        That’s it! Students can create 1 or more ghosts each. They can write their name on the ghost or they can create several for a ghost catch game.

        Other ideas include using tissue paper or coffee filters. If using a tissue paper cover to the ghost, you can create different colored ghosts. If using coffee filters, you can create smaller ghosts for more refined fine motor practice.

        How to play the ghost catch game:

        There are so many ways to play with these ghosts in a classroom Halloween party. You can make the game work for the space you have, and the specific elementary age. Some ideas include:

        • Break students into pairs. Each can play catch with a ghost by tossing the ghost back and forth. After each toss, the pair takes a step back and tosses the ghost again. If they drop the ghost, they are out. The pair that remains longest wins.
        • Students can take turns tossing their ghosts into a target. The student with the most ghosts in the target wins.
        • Use the ghosts like a bean bag game toward a target.
        • Play ghost cornhole- Play the classic cornhole game but use the ghost crafts.
        • Use these ghost milk cartons to play a ghost catch game.
        Use the ghost bean bags in catching games or tossing games in a school Halloween party.
        Play catch games with the DIY ghost beanbags.

        Classroom Halloween party Games

        Use the above ghosts in different Halloween games. These tag games are easily incorporated into a Halloween theme.

        Halloween I Spy- Kids love this real toy I Spy game, and you can use all of those old party favors that end up sitting around. Gather some Halloween items:

        • Halloween mini erasers
        • Plastic spider rings
        • Pencil toppers
        • Bat cut outs
        • Halloween stickers
        • Halloween candy
        • Plastic vampire fangs
        • Wind up toys

        Place the toys on a tray or in a bag and work on visual scanning, visual memory, visual attention, and even stereognosis if you blindfold the students first.

        Halloween Worksheets that Build Skills-

        1. It’s great to have some back-up ideas if kids plow through the Halloween activities very quickly. Use this printable Halloween color and find worksheet. It builds visual perceptual skills and is great for coloring, too.

        2. These Halloween pumpkin puzzles are fun too. Just print them off, cut out the squares and pass them out. Kids can color, cut, and build them onto a party bag or treat bag.

        3. Use the pumpkin deep breathing coloring page to work on fine motor skills, coloring skills, and use as a self-regulation tool.

        Classroom Halloween party crafts

        Some of our favorite Halloween crafts support the development of fine motor skills, executive functioning skills, scissor skills, and encourage sensory experiences in a spookily fun way.

        These are great ideas for the elementary aged Halloween party.

        Make bean bag ghosts for a school Halloween party and party game in the classroom.
        These tissue ghosts are like bean bags for classroom games at a Halloween party.

        Noodle Spider Craft

        This spider craft is just one of the many spider activities we have here on the website.

        Use dry elbow noodles to make a spider. This is a great one for building fine motor skills. Dye the pasta ahead of time or make the dying process part of the party experience . (Note that the pasta takes a while to dry. If you are dying the pasta during the Halloween classroom party, it make more sense to use washable black paint incase the colors get onto clothing or hands).

        How to dye pasta for a spider craft. Use dyed noodles for a spider craft for a Halloween school party.
        Make a noodle spider craft with students at a Halloween school party.

        To make this noodle spider craft, you’ll need just a few materials:

        • Elbow noodles
        • Closable plastic zip top bag
        • Black paint or black food coloring
        • Hand sanitizer

        If you are dying the pasta at home before the party, just take in the colored noodles. If you are coloring the noodles in the classroom, you’ll need the above items.

        Toco color the noodles black:

        1. Toss the elbow pasta in a plastic closable baggie with black food coloring or black paint and add a little squirt of hand sanitizer.  
        2. Spread the noodles out on newspaper to dry.  

        Also need:

        • Black paper
        • scissors
        • Glue
        • Marker

        Next, use the colored pasta to make the spider craft:

        1. Each student can pick out 8 pieces of pasta. This is a great exercise in pincer grasp and in-hand manipulation skills.
        2. Cut out a black circle from construction paper. About the size of a bottle cap is good.
        3. Glue the circle onto paper. Use squeeze glue to glue the dyed pasta to a paper around a black circle cut from construction paper.  

        What a cute craft to send home with the kids!  Keep in mind that once the pasta is used for a craft, it shouldn’t be eaten!

        Halloween Pasta Spider Craft
        Make a Halloween spider craft using colored pasta at a Halloween classroom party, especially good for Halloween school parties for older kids.

        Other Halloween crafts for a school party include:

        Make a ghost craft for sensory play This is a fun one for kids to make but also use in sensory bins or fine motor activities.

        Make a ghost craft with construction paper and hole punches. Glue them to tissue paper for spooky eyes. This is an easy way to work on scissor skills. Kids can also address skills such as bilateral coordination, hand strength with a simple Halloween craft that uses just paper, crayon, scissors, and a hole punch. Use these ghosts to decorate for Halloween and monitor scissor skills.

        Make a ghost craft with recycled materials. This is a fun Halloween party craft that can be a tool for working on dexterity, precision of grasp, in-hand manipulation, bilateral coordination, hand strength, and more! These ghosts would make a fun addition to the therapy clinic, OT doorway, or even a bulletin board decoration.

        Use the Halloween Therapy Kit or Pumpkin Fine Motor Kit! These kits are included inside The OT Toolbox Member’s Club, or grab them below.

        Pumpkin activity kit
        Pumpkin Fine Motor Kit

        Grab the Pumpkin Fine Motor Kit for more coloring, cutting, and eye-hand coordination activities with a Pumpkin theme! It includes:

        • 7 digital products that can be used any time of year- has a “pumpkins” theme
        • 5 pumpkin scissor skills cutting strips
        • Pumpkin scissor skills shapes- use in sensory bins, math, sorting, pattern activities
        • 2 pumpkin visual perception mazes with writing activity
        • Pumpkin “I Spy” sheet – color in the outline shapes to build pencil control and fine motor strength
        • Pumpkin Lacing cards – print, color, and hole punch to build bilateral coordination skills
        • 2 Pumpkin theme handwriting pages – single and double rule bold lined paper for handwriting practice

        Work on underlying fine motor and visual motor integration skills so you can help students excel in handwriting, learning, and motor skill development.

        You can grab this Pumpkin Fine Motor kit for just $6!

        Colleen Beck, OTR/L has been an occupational therapist since 2000, working in school-based, hand therapy, outpatient peds, EI, and SNF. Colleen created The OT Toolbox to inspire therapists, teachers, and parents with easy and fun tools to help children thrive. Read her story about going from an OT making $3/hour (after paying for kids’ childcare) to a full-time OT resource creator for millions of readers. Want to collaborate? Send an email to contact@theottoolbox.com.