simple halloween ideas

3 Ways to Make Halloween Meaningful For Your Family

If you’re a kid, what could be better than Halloween? You get to dress up in a costume and go door to door demanding candy from adults you don’t know. Furthermore, these adults somehow are obligated to give in to your request. Even schools are helpless against the allure of it all, usually allowing for a costume-themed celebration in lieu of a class or two.

With just a little creativity, you can make Halloween more than fun. You can make it meaningful.

But as great as all that is, with just a little creativity, you can make Halloween more than fun. You can make it meaningful. And having a meaningful Halloween is worth the effort. While a fun night of excess sugar has its place, training our children to use creative energy to infuse the ordinary with meaning will be a gift they benefit from for life. With that in mind, here are 3 simple Halloween ideas that will make Halloween meaningful for your family.

1. Halloween Hospitality

Make it your goal to make your front porch a welcoming place on Halloween. Rather than simply sitting around and waiting for someone to ring the doorbell, come up with a fun costume theme for the whole family. Decorate the porch or front stoop to match and welcome people in character. Wave at kids as they come and go. Guess their costumes and get excited about the effort they put into them. Of course, also make sure you have great candy. Use it as an opportunity to teach your kids the power of hospitality.

2. Everything’s a Competition

Maybe your kids are quick to ask for the overpriced Halloween costume hanging up at Target. If you’re like me, you think, “I really have to pay this much for an outfit my child’s only going to wear once?” The answer is no—you don’t. Instead, have a make-your-own-costume competition as a family. Give each person a budget and take a family trip to a Goodwill or Salvation Army thrift store. Everyone shops for 30 minutes. You might be surprised how creative you and your kids can be in throwing together a fun and affordable costume (if you need help with costume ideas, start here). Ask a family friend to judge the costumes you created and in the process, you’ll create some great family memories.

3. Generous Halloweeners

We often don’t think about the kids who would love to trick-or-treat but can’t. Some don’t live in safe neighborhoods. Others have lives so difficult that it’s simply not a priority for their families. What if you rallied your scout troupe or your child’s classroom and contacted a local shelter to see if you can host a Halloween party for the kids there? Your family also could host a candy and costume drive to collect candy and costumes to donate to the shelter, after you’ve gotten the shelter’s permission. Before long, what once was a holiday all about consumption suddenly becomes a lesson in generosity—and one that’s still a lot of fun.

Looking for more fun? There are more great Fall activities for kids here!

Sound off: What ideas could you add to this list of fun and meaningful Halloween activities?

Huddle up with your kids and ask, “What could we do to have fun this Halloween while also helping others?”