Ahhhh, October! My favorite month of the year for so many reasons. It screams fun and excitement, and students are full of energy fueled by cooler weather and the anticipation of Halloween shenanigans. It's easy to get into the spirit of the season with lessons and activities your students will love. Here are four of my favorites:
🗝️ Digital Escape Rooms
You don’t have to sacrifice learning to have fun in class when you incorporate digital escape rooms! They add a bit of mystery and intrigue to your lessons, and kids get super excited about completing the tasks. Imagine your students practicing ELA skills while completing a digital escape room that begins outside an eerie mansion called Blackhill House. A message challenges them to help Bastian Blackhill locate a key to an antique cabinet in order to inherit what might be a haunted house! Here is the escape room I use. Blackhill House Escape Room
🖤 Blackout Poetry
I absolutely love using poetry in my classroom all year long, but fall is one of my favorite seasons for it. My kids can’t wait for the chance to create blackout poetry. Blackout poetry is when a page of text is completely blacked out except for select words and phrases. What remains is a brand new poem created from the existing text.
In the digital version, students “blackout” unwanted text, leaving only words and phrases needed to create their poem. It’s a fun activity that even my most reluctant writers get excited about. I can promise you they will beg for more! Want to see other ways I use poetry in my classroom? Read more about that here.
🎃 October ELA Activities
What do you do with students who always finish everything earlier than the rest of the class? Or what about the times when you pull your small groups and need something for the other students to work on? I use these no-prep tasks that include parts of speech, reading, and writing. They work in stations, but I’ve also combined all of the activities into a packet for students to complete throughout the month.
👻 Six-Word Spooky Stories
Another student favorite I can’t forget to mention is the Six-Word Spooky Story challenge. I tell students they must write a spooky story using ONLY six words. At first they think it’s impossible, but after a few attempts, they get the hang of it and ask to write more!
To add to the mystery and set the stage for some spooky fun, I turn down the classroom lights, add flashlights or battery candles, and some eerie music. Then I let my kiddos present their work aloud to the class. Six-word spooky stories are a great way to address concise language, word choice, mood, and main idea.
Here are a few examples to inspire your students:
Woke up. This isn't my room.
Keep screaming. Nobody can hear you.
The doll slowly blinked its eyes.
The only escape route is blocked.
Try the free Six-Word Spooky Story activity in your classroom.
Go ahead and have some fun this month with the activities I shared in this post! Which one was your favorite?