Pumpkin and Ghost Garland

Pumpkin and Ghost Garland lesson plan

How to decorate for Halloween? Why not make a cool, spooky garland featuring your favorite scary story characters!

  • 1.

    Read several Halloween books—mysteries, funny stories, or other tales. First in a small group, and then with the whole class, discuss your favorites. Decide which story elements are present in all of these tales. List and compare the characters and settings. Make a festive garland that depicts the characters and setting in your favorite story.

  • 2.

    Use Crayola® Erasable Colored Pencils to color small paper plates orange for jack-o’-lanterns. Create funny faces by erasing shapes to form eyes and other features. Outline or fill in the shapes with another color. Color other plates black. Erase parts of them to create spooky ghosts or witches. Color more plates red. Erase them to weave delicate spider webs.

  • 3.

    Cut paper plates to make a tiny Boo banner, crescent moon, stems, leaves, twirly vines, or other Halloween symbols. Decorate them. If you wish, make cutouts in your plates so you can suspend tiny decorations inside with thread. Attach your cutouts with Crayola Glue Sticks.

  • 4.

    Punch holes in your plates. String your Halloween characters on a colorful ribbon. Hang the garland on a door frame, your desk, or in a hallway.


  • LA: Ask and answer questions to demonstrate understanding of a text, referring explicitly to the text as the basis for the answers.
  • LA: Use information gained from illustrations (e.g., maps, photographs) and the words in a text to demonstrate understanding of the text.
  • LA: Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grade level topics and texts, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly.
  • LA: Write routinely over extended time frames and shorter time frames for a range of discipline-specific tasks, purposes, and audiences.
  • SS: Describe ways in which language, stories, folktales, music, and artistic creations serve as expressions of culture and influence behavior of people living in a particular culture.
  • VA: Use different media, techniques, and processes to communicate ideas, experiences, and stories.
  • VA: Use visual structures of art to communicate ideas.
  • VA: Select and use subject matter, symbols, and ideas to communicate meaning.


  • Possible classroom resources include: A Happy Halloween: A Children's Halloween Picture Book by Lynn R. Davis; Room on the Broom by Julia Donaldson; The 13 Nights of Halloween by Guy Vasilovich; Little Goblins Ten by Pamela Jane.
  • Working in small groups, students compose math word problems related to their combined garland pieces. Students my focus on addition, subtraction, patterns, etc. in their problems. Swap problems with another group and solve!
  • Students adapt this lesson format to celebrate other holidays and seasons by creating garlands depicting favorite songs, books, and/or stories.