Halloween Classroom Attention Getters

It’s Halloween time, so it’s time to change things up! No more “Get it? Got it! Good!” when you need to get your students’ attention! We’ve come up with a list of fun, Halloween attention getters for the classroom!

Teacher: “Who you gonna call?”
Students: “Ghostbusters!”

Teacher: “Monster!”
Students: “Mash!”

Teacher: “Knock, knock!”
Students: “Trick or Treat!!”

Teacher: “Skeleton!”
Students: “Bones!”

Teacher: “Scare me!”
Students: “Boo!”

Teacher: “Pumpkin, pumpkin shining bright!”
Students: “Halloween’s a scary night!”

Teacher: “It’s not Santa Claus!”
Students: “It’s the Great Pumpkin!”

Teacher: “Vegan Zombie!”
Students: “Graaaaaaiiiiinnnnss!” (like how zombies say “brains”)

Teacher: “If you’ve got it…”
Students: “…haunt it!”

Teacher: “Boil, boil…!”
Students: “Toil and trouble!”

Teacher: “I feel cold!”
Students: “Goosebumps!”

If you’ve taught your class any fun Halloween poems, you might consider using lines from those also. For example, if you taught your class the popular “Five little pumpkins” poem, you could use a line and have the students respond with the following line. If you’re not familiar with that poem, you’re missing out! Here it is:

Five little pumpkins sitting on a gate.
The first one said,  “Oh, my, it’s getting late!”
The second one said,  “There are witches in the air!”
The third one said,  “But we don’t care!”
The fourth one said,  “Let’s run and run and run!”
The fifth one said,  “It’s Halloween fun!”
Then woooooo, went the wind
And out went the light
And the five little pumpkins
Rolled out of sight!

Click here for more fun Halloween stuff!

Paint Partners (Student Mixer)

paint partners 1

I think I’ve mentioned this before, but I LOVE the paint section at Lowes! All the colors are just way too fun. Also, there are times when I need students partnered randomly and I need a clever way to do it. So here’s my paint swatch student mixer idea:

  1. Grab 2 of each of your favorite paint swatches. (Make sure the names aren’t anything that’ll be distracting. I didn’t notice that one of the pinks was called “Tuti Fruiti” and it was a major distraction the first time we used these. I ended up taking that pair out of the stack in the future.)
  2. Glue each swatch onto a piece of white card stock.
  3. Laminate the cards so they will last.
  4. When it’s time go partner students, mix up the stack and hand out the cards. Give your kids a set amount of time (I used 1 minute) to find and sit next to their paint partner (the other student who has the same paint swatch as them).

Note: this idea requires time to let kids find their partner. I found this was a quick, effective break before introducing the new assignment.

Classroom Treasure Chests

This is one of the coolest classroom treasure chests I’ve ever seen! The teacher found this old chest at Michael’s, and then glued plastic gems on it to add to the “treasure” effect.

classroom treasure chest

You don’t need a cool box for your treasure chest. I used a woven basket with a lid. Other teachers just use a cute gift bag or a decorated plastic box. The point is to find something that will motivate your students, and be manageable for you.

MUST-READ TIP: My first year, I put all the prizes in the box at the beginning of the year. This was a big NO-NO. After a few months, all the good stuff was picked out and the kids weren’t very motivated by the basket. So I had to constantly worry about what new stuff to add and what to do with the stuff that wasn’t ever getting picked. So, don’t put all your prizes in at once. Instead, split your stuff into 4 groups (or some other number) so you can add new stuff every quarter.

Here are some things you can put in your classroom treasure chest:

  • candy (some schools have a policy against this, so check with your principal)
  • pencils
  • stickers
  • coupons (click here for coupon ideas)
  • coloring pages
  • holiday stuff (click here for ideas)
  • junk from catalogues like Oriental Trading Company, etc.

Keeping Track of Students’ Writing Progress

keep track of student writing


One of the most important parts of school is teaching kids to monitor their own progress. Here’s one way to help kids keep track of their own writing progress. We made a giant pencil with different sections (one for each step of the writing process) and laminated it. Then we added velcro strips down the side and to little tags that had each student’s classroom number on it. When kids finish one step of the process, they move their number tag down to the next step. This also helps kids know when they can get up from their seats… I’ve also seen charts where kids move a numbered popsicle stick from pocket to pocket to indicate progress through the writing steps. How have you helped your students keep track of their writing progress?