Group games offer a chilling, thrilling way for elementary school children to enjoy Halloween, even during school hours. Offer a variety of games so even those that are not overly competitive or athletic can enjoy the activities.
Divide the group into teams of two to three children each. Each team receives one roll of toilet paper or crepe paper. One player from each team volunteers to be the "mummy" while the others wrap him from head to toe with the paper. Once the roll is exhausted, each mummy runs to a finish line across the game-play area. To make the game more challenging, a mummy that loses any of his wrapping must go back and retrieve it before continuing to the finish line.
Paint a ping-pong ball to look like an eyeball and give it a spooky name, such as "Igor's eye." All participating players gather around a table such as a ping-pong table or cafeteria table with the ball at the center. At the word "go," everyone blows on the ball, trying to get it to fall off the edge of the table far from their own spots. While there is no designated winner, the game results in plenty of shrieks and laughs. For a slight variation played indoors, divide the kids into teams, lining them up on one end of the room. Each team gets a ping-pong eyeball painted a different color. Upon "go," the first player on each team must get on all fours and blow the ball around a chair 10 or so feet away, then back to the next player on the team to repeat the process. Hands may not touch the ball. The first team to complete the task wins.
Spooky Story Game
For a spontaneous game that requires no supplies or athletic ability, offer a spooky twist on the elementary-school classic *telephone game.* Divide the group into two or three teams and ask members of each to line up, either standing or sitting on the ground. Whisper a short spooky story into the ear of the first child, repeating the same story into the ear of the first player on every team, such as "I saw a scary monster named Mongo eating a snack on the subway last Saturday at midnight." The first player, whispering, repeats the story into the ear of the second player, and so on, until the entire team has heard the story. Once all players have heard it, ask the last player on each team to repeat the story aloud. The final version on each team is most likely very different than the original and different from the other team versions.
Count the Candy
Display a glass jar full of Halloween candy such as candy corn, or use more healthful snacks such as fruit leather cut into ghost shapes. Invite children to guess how many treats are inside the jar; the child who comes closest to guessing the actual total wins either the jar or another prize. Offer lesser prizes to all children who play, such as individual bags of toasted pumpkin seeds, so everyone wins.
- Comstock Images/Stockbyte/Getty Images