Do the Chinese celebrate Halloween? Dressing up and putting out decorations is growing in popularity, especially in big cities like Beijing. So what should we do with our kids while teaching ESL online? Share the celebration with the students of course! Students love learning about our culture, just like we enjoy learning about their culture. Halloween is such a fun way to share part of our culture because there are so many decorations, props and rewards we can incorporate. However, if you’re like me, you might not have enough time to decorate and get super festive. So let’s take a look at some simple props, rewards and costumes to that make getting festive super easy.

Stuffed Animals

A lot of my go-to props are stuffed animals. I use them to make shy students comfortable, to demonstrate conversations, and to make students laugh. I also use them as a reward. For October you could use Halloween related stuffed animals in the same way, but add some fun character voices. As a reward, you could show the stuffed animal and teach a new vocabulary word each time if it makes sense for the lesson and the student.

halloween stuffed animals

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The build-a-face is great for rewards and to teach Halloween related vocabulary. It builds suspense for the student throughout the lesson.
You can ask a lot of questions related to the face:

  • What is this? Is it an eye?
  • How many eyes does it have?
  • What color is it?
  • Is this a pumpkin?

Easy Costumes

It can be difficult to dress up online because you can only see from the shoulders up on camera. That’s why it is perfect to have something fun on our head or part of our face. Obviously, we want it to be comfortable because most of us teach for a few hours at a time. The cutest costumes I found were Mario from Mario Brothers and a Pig face headband. What have you found?

Something fun I would do with the pig costume is duck down and only show the pig’s head in the camera. Then slowly rise up so the student sees me. I can imagine giving the student a good chuckle. I would take it a step further and give the pig a special voice. I would show the pig’s head (and hide my own) at various points throughout the lesson to reward the student or converse with the student.

If you don’t want a costume, but want to be festive, you could always just wear a fun Halloween headband. Check these out!

Pumpkin Props

My favorite pumpkin prop is the foam pumpkin which you can use as a reward. Add a face, write a name, or draw a ghost. How fun!

I also like the pumpkin bag for creating suspense and pulling out something Halloween related. If the kid is advanced enough he/she could guess what’s going to come out of the bag. If the student get’s it right, he/she could choose the next activity in the lesson or ask you a question.

Let me know what your favorite Halloween classroom additions are in the comments.

Please share this with your teacher friends if you liked this and found it useful.