Halloween and Preschoolers: Keep it light

As our children get old enough to enjoy more activities we need to be mindful of what is developmentally appropriate for them to experience. Here at La Canada Preschool, we have set up some Halloween decorations in a well lit room to create a preschool haunted house. If a child seems apprehensive, we do not make them come into our classroom where you will find a skeleton, a witch and some scary props. Yet as we have left the room decorated for the week we are seeing children slowly approaching this room full of make believe.

It is important the we stress the make believe of Halloween and demystify the scary images that can be frightening for young children. It seems that if Halloween is introduced slowly with caution not to frighten children, they are able to process this holiday that seems to be more of our culture every season.

Fears for children are normal and healthy. Think of the book, “There’s a nightmare in my Closet”. When we read this story a t circle time the children are glued and begin talking about how monsters are not real. If we can look at Halloween as a time to address fears as normal and part of our emotional make up, our preschoolers can enjoy this time and learn to keep it light during these dark days of Halloween…

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