It’s that time of the year. Hallowe’en! With so many materials around, how does one choose? Here was what I did with my first graders in a 45-minute lesson.

With a picture of a pumpkin, I elicited the topic. “When is it? What other characters are there? What do you do on Hallowe’en?” The students were up for offering their favourite characters. A competition of how to spell these words ensured. I had hidden the cards around the room at the start of the lesson. The students were to go and search for them to complete a worksheet. A few of the students who preferred to be verbal or couldn’t get their hands on a card could ask the teacher “How do you spell ______?” Those who finished early got a little treat and were asked to think about which character they wanted to be. A round up with me asking the class “How do you spell ______?”

Once the dust had settled, I asked them to listen to me clapping a rhythm. I asked them to try to remember it. Puzzled, they took up the challenge anyway. Once everybody’s got it, we made it into a chant and a substitution drill.
I wanna be, I wanna be, I wanna be (a/an) _________!

The advantage of using a chant was that my students were able to remember the article better and were getting exposure of its use as a weak form. Also it’s a great way of introducing connected speech.

I said to the class now you want to tell your friends but you also want to know what they want to be at a fancy dress party. How? I elicited ” What about you?

We changed our line to “I wanna be a/an _______. What about you?” I also elicited the response. “Oh me too! / Oh really? I wanna be a/an _______!” All these were introduced with gestures.

After some drills, I asked them to look at their worksheet again and decide what they want to be at the fancy dress party and then ask 5 friends. They should write their friend’s name next to the character. As a class round up, ask for a show of hands of who wants to be who and find the most popular character. I also use this as a chance to introduce a few adjectives associated with the characters.

We went on to do a bingo. Students chose 9 items or characters about Hallowe’en to write on their sheet. They were to tick each off when they hear me mention it while I read out a story on Hallowe’en. If you have only a short amount of time left, you could read the story again and ask your students to order the vocabulary they hear.

How would you classify each of these activities in terms of Gardner’s multiple intelligences or the various learning styles?

About Connieay

If I were a bird, I would be an albatross, a bird with stamina, persistence and the ability to go far and high. I value long-term relationships but am perfectly happy being independent and can endure solitude if necessary.
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2 Responses to Hallowe’en

  1. Alan Wu says:

    Hi, may I ask you something about ELT? I just knew this after I read your blog. Is it the teaching qualification in English? Thanks.

    • Connieay says:

      Hi Alan,
      Sorry for the late reply. I’ve been a bit occupied. CELTA is indeed an English teaching qualification for adults. It’s a fantastic course especially if you do it in International House (IH) London.

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