Teacher Sign Up
Sign In
Explore the Symbols of Halloween

Students will investigate bats and other objects and discuss reasons why these items became symbols for Halloween. They will draw pictures of objects that symbolize Halloween or the Day of the Dead. Then they will discuss how and why their symbols represent these holidays.

PROCESS:

  1. Instruct students to make a list of things they know about bats. If possible, give them time to conduct research to find more facts to add to their list. Then have students make a list of the ways bats are portrayed in relation to Halloween. 
  2. Compare and contrast the two lists. Discuss reasons why bats may have become a symbol for this holiday. Challenge students to identify ways in which that portrayal is misleading.
  3. As a class, identify other items that have become symbols for Halloween or the Day of the Dead. Discuss reasons why each item may have become a symbol for these holidays.
  4. Encourage students to select one of these items or another object that could be linked to these days. Instruct them to draw that object in a way that symbolizes these holidays. 

ASSESSMENT: 

Invite students to share their symbols with the class. Discuss reasons why these symbols are an appropriate representation of Halloween or the Day of the Dead.

CUSTOMIZE THE LESSON:    

Grades 3-4:
Give each student a piece of plain white paper. Have each student draw a picture of a bat. Tell them to draw it in a way that reminds them of Halloween or the Day of the Dead. Encourage students to explain why their drawing reminds them of these holidays.

Grades 5-6:
Give each student a piece of plain white paper. Have each student select an object other than bats that is commonly associated with Halloween or the Day of the Dead. Tell students to draw their objects in a way that reminds them of these holidays. Compare, contrast and then discuss the results.

Grades 7-8:
Give each student a piece of plain white paper. Have each student select an object related to Halloween or the Day of the Dead. Instruct students to draw that object in a way that symbolizes these holidays. Challenge them to explain how and why their new symbol is an appropriate representation for these days.

Grades 9-10:
Give each student a piece of plain white paper. Have each student select an everyday object not commonly associated with Halloween or the Day of the Dead. Instruct students to draw that object in a way that symbolizes these holidays. Challenge them to explain how and why their new symbol is an appropriate representation for these days.