Directed drawing for kids of a bat.

5 Engaging Writing Prompts for Halloween: Fun in 2nd Grade!

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Writing Prompts for Halloween

Writing Prompts for Halloween are a fun way to engage young learners in building vocabulary. They can write about fun fall topics. For young students, Halloween can be scary but there are lots of fun and not so scary things to draw as well. 

Directed drawing for kids of a bat.
Directed drawings are a fun activity for kids in the fall and can be paired with writing prompts for Halloween.

Introducing Vocabulary with Writing Prompts for Halloween

There is lots of fun vocabulary to discover with writing prompts for Halloween. It is fun teaching not only nouns like: spider, bat, and pumpkin, but also introducing fun verbs such as: crawling, scamper, prowl, and fly. There are also many fun Halloween adjectives to introduce with writing prompts for first grade like: spooky, sticky, and sneaky. For more information on how to teach verbs check out this article: The Importance of Verbs and How to Teach them or How Verbs Pave the Way for Language Development

1. Spider Writing Prompts for Halloween

Spiders are fun to learn about with a spider directed drawing. Students have the opportunity to study different types of spiders. Spiderwebs and spiders are simple to draw, therefore all students can feel successful. There are also spider songs like The Itsy Bitsy spider. Charlotte’s Web is a great story to read aloud to the class and grow their appreciation of spiders.

Spider directed drawing paired with a journal page as writing prompts for October.
Pairing spider directed drawings along with writing prompts for October make a fun activity for students.

2. Bat Directed Drawing for Halloween

Bat directed drawings are a favorite of mine! They are fun to add into a unit about bats. Stellaluna by Janell Cannon is a great storybook with fascinating artwork. It is a great way to learn about nocturnal animals. I also love The Bat by Elise Gravel. Check out this short informative video on bats.

3. Pumpkin Directed Drawing for Halloween

Pumpkin directed drawings are a must! I love drawing pumpkins with my students. They are so simple and can be made in so many colors and shape variations. Many towns have fall fairs where people compete to grow the biggest pumpkin. Measuring a pumpkin is a great addition to a math measurement unit. Look up how much a winning pumpkin weighs from your region and compare it to the weight of other vegetables.

Simple kid directed drawing of a pumpkin.
A pumpkin is a fun kid directed drawing topic. Pumpkins are fall theme.

4. Black Cat Directed Drawing for Halloween

Black Cat directed drawings are a favorite. I have many favorites 😉 Cats are so silent, and students with pet cats love to talk about their cats and it is fun to hear all their stories. It is also a great way to talk about superstitions. 

5. Owl Directed Drawing as Writing Prompts for Halloween

Owl directed drawings are a hoot! Owls are a fun topic to explore with a class. 

  1. Compare different types of owls. 
  2. Measure the wingspan of different owls. 
  3. Next, listen to owl recordings. It is a calm observation activity. 
  4. Look up a slow motion video of an owl grasping its prey. It is also fascinating (depending on the age of your students). 
  5. Dissect Owl pellets. I have dissected owl pellets with my class which is also a fascinating addition to an owl unit!

Worksheets for First Grade Writing

Worksheets for first grade writing are a great way to include cross-curricular content into a unit. I love to include lots of directed drawings for kids. Even in a simple writing worksheet so much of the students’ personalities shine through in their writing. 

With First Grade students early in the year sometimes they need more support with writing a sentence. Sometimes, I use fill-in-the-blank sentences and mix them in with our writing program. This helps students feel successful and is a great reading tool too! Students love to reread their work. 

Student stories could also be bound into a class book so that students can enjoy reading each other’s work.

Owl and cat worksheet for first grade writing.
Fun owl and cat worksheet for first grade writing. Word banks help build essential vocabulary.

Writing Activities for Second Grade

Writing Activities for second Grade can become more complex than first grade writing. Encouraging students to build on their vocabulary and enrich their sentences. I created simple writing and drawing prompts to use with my second grade students to challenge them.

Writing Prompts for October

There are many other writing prompts for October that I like to use with my students. They fit into the fall theme without being all about Halloween. Some students love Halloween, but other families do not celebrate Halloween. I like to mix it up in October and cover some Halloween topics but also include other fall themes.

Not-So-Halloween Fall Topics

  1. Racoon Directed Drawing

Raccoon directed drawings are fun. The contrast between the black and white fits in well with all the black and orange decorations around Halloween time.

  1. Mushroom Directed Drawings

The Mushroom Fan Club by Elise Gravel is one of my favorite books about mushrooms. Can you tell she is one of my favorite authors? She shows so many different types of mushrooms and introduces mushroom safety to kids. She talks about how to be kind to mushrooms. I like to read The Mushroom Fan Club when we are studying biodiversity.

  1. Raven Directed Drawing

The raven directed drawing is another favorite. Birds are so fascinating and there are many fun videos of raven’s talking on YouTube. You can listen to different types of raven calls here: Common Raven Sounds. Some indigenous cultures have stories about ravens in the area where I teach. Students love hearing the traditional stories. 

  1. Mouse Directed Drawing

Mice are so cute and a fun rodent to study. I remember being fascinated by mice in story books. The book Something from Nothing by Phoebe Gilman has a beautiful mice subplot happening on every page. Students love to look at the storyline, and it is a great jumping off point for drawing and writing.

  1. Fall Berries Directed Drawing

In the fall there are so many wonderful berries to eat and that is why I like to use a fall berries directed drawing with my students. As with mushrooms, it is similarly important to talk about different berries and that not all are edible. It is fun to look at which animals like to eat berries, or to look at the native berries that grow in your area.

Not scary themed writing prompts for halloween featuring a raccoon, mushrooms, and a raven.
Writing prompts for Halloween can be not-so- scary, like drawing raccoons, mushrooms, and ravens.

Kid Directed Drawing

Kid directed drawings are so fun and an important part of our art program. I began designing simple directed drawings that young students could follow independently and feel successful as artists. As teachers, we are so busy. I wanted to create a way that students could learn to draw without it taking me a long time to prep. 

We draw lots of different things in my classroom: seahorses, sharks, even the lifecycle of a jellyfish! As students draw new things they build their confidence and see that they are capable artists. They learn to observe, see simple shapes within the drawing, and break images down into smaller actionable steps. 

To read more about the importance of Directed Drawings check out my blog: Why Directed Drawings for First Grade is so Important.

Creative Ways to Use Directed Drawings

I love seeing children’s artwork when it is done mindfully. With a few simple strategies, a directed drawing lesson can go from a quick unfinished sketch on a piece of paper to a beautifully finished piece, a 3D project, or a collection of beautiful sketches documenting progress through collected images over time. 

To read more about the different ways we transform Directed Drawings read my blog post: Directed Draw for Kids: 5 Creative Ways to Use Them

Artist shows how to transform step by step pictures to make a diorama
Transform how to draw step by step pictures into beautiful shoebox dioramas.
  1. Tracy Crossley says:

    Hi Evelyn,
    I enjoy your Blog. I’ve used your Directed Drawings with the Preschool and Primary kids I babysit and now they are giving me their own Directed Drawings for me to follow. It’s great to see them finding simple shapes within a complicated image. Thanks for writing.

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