How Can We Trick or Treat for Halloween in Brisbane?
For a list of Halloween Events in Brisbane for 2015 head to https://brisbanekids.com.au/halloween-events-for-kids-in-brisbane-2015/
Not all your neighbours are into Halloween but there are some ways that you can ensure Halloween Trick or Treating goes more smoothly….If you have a close neighbourhood then it would be great to think that everyone would get involved and even take it one step further with a big Halloween Street Party. Kids can trick or treat at the beginning of the night and all neighbours can then bring a plate to a central location. It can also be an opportunity to get to know your neighbours and if you are brave you might even like to do a quick door knock and explain your intention to have your kids trick or treat (and even provide treats as a proactive measure).
Ways you can encourage neighbourhood involvement in Halloween
The general rule of thumb if you forget to prepare for Halloween is that if the front light is on, then Halloween Trick or Treaters are welcome. This may be hit and miss to some extent but in over 8 years of parenting this has still served me well.
Step 1 Select and print out some of these Brisbane Kids Halloween printables in full colour.
Click on these links for the print ready PDF versions –
How to use the Halloween Printable
- Colour photo copy or print several times.
- Cut out and use a whole puncher to put a whole in the top and attach some ribbon or string so it can be easily hung on a door, letterbox or gate.
- Ask your neighbour to attach their flyer to their door, gate or letter box so that it can easily be seen and to show that Trick-or-Treaters are welcome.
- Drop into letter boxes or visit your neighbours door-to-door, or other places that you plan to go trick-or-treating.
How to prepare your Brisbane Kids for Trick or Treating
Teaching your child to trick or treat is not unlike teaching them how to receive a present at Christmas time. It’s is a great opportunity to learn about etiquette, respect for other people’s property, opinions and, most importantly, personal safety.
- Choose costumes. Make them easy to walk in and super fun. Face painting is a great way to lead up to the big finale. You can buy Halloween costumes online or most department stores sell them for less than $30 each. If you are so inclined you could even make one. Consider using reflective colours on costumes if you make them.
- Try on the costumes before the big day. Nothing worse than a skeleton costume that doesn’t fit or a cape that is too long to be walked in.
- Begin trick or treating just as darkness creeps into the day. Trick or treating shouldn’t go past 8pmish. The reality is, for most kids, just a few houses of trick or treating will achieve their idea of Halloween. If you only have a few houses you can safely trick or treat at then simply prepare the kids with realistic expectations before hand. “We will be knocking on Mr and Mrs Jones’s Door and the next door neighbours and then we will come back and trick your father
- Practice with your kids before hand how to receive candy and lollies especially if it is candy that they don’t like.
- Feed your children before trick or treating.
- Provide them with a small basket or bag each to gather their goodies.
- Consider applying a pool rule for kids- which means at the end of trick or treating everyone pools what they got and splits it up.
- Decorate your home. It is super fun for trick or treaters to see cobwebs hanging from eaves or a ghost in a window.
- Educate the older kids and younger ones about What Halloween is really about. Bust some myths and fill them with history!
How to have a safe Halloween
- Children under 12 should never trick or treat by themselves and those over 12 should only do so in groups and in a familiar, well lit neighbourhood. Ideally even kids 13 and over would be accompanied by an adult.
- Buy some cheap glow sticks or torches so that each child is illuminated for both safety and their own peace of mind.
- Drive carefully on Halloween.
- Discuss how this only happens on one day of the year, being Halloween, and that Trick or Treating can only be done with a parent or adult. There is a lot of discussion in Australia about the safety of trick or treating and it setting up the expectation that knocking on neighbours doors will be okay any time of year. I think by establishing some rules, such as not entering the home, remaining on the doorstep, explaining about the adult presence and also talking about it being one special day, it is no different than visiting a doctor that might examine a child’s body or a friend who brings your child home from a playdate. It doesn’t mean your child will let everyone look at their body or feel okay about every person giving them a lift home. It is all about being reasonable both in discussion with your child and supervision at other times of year which would largely prevent them from wandering off and deciding to trick or treat. There can be a tendency to be over cautious and miss out on a whole lot of fun.
How to manage kids with sensory issues at Halloween
From experience the best way to prepare a child who is on the spectrum for Halloween is to first ask them if they want to do it. They may not want to Trick or Treat but they may want to still be involved in having a costume and being there to receive trick or treaters as opposed to door knocking. They may just want to watch a scary movie and forgo trick or treating altogether. Make sure you purchase a costume ahead of time to ensure that they get used to the feeling of the fabric and walking in the costume. Also consider buy a costume with a mask so if they decide they don’t want to get into costume they may still decide to wear a mask.
If they decide they do want to trick or treat then there are a couple of things you can do to help ensure they are properly supported. Social stories are a great way to begin and you can either write your own OR atleast support the idea of trick or treat in reality by planning a route on paper together and then pacing it out before the big night.
This is a social story that has been written for a general trick or treating experience http://www.abilitypath.org/love-laugh–live/family-fun/halloween-social.pdf
And a video for younger kids to explain what trick or treating is….
Help create magical childhood memories that are backed up with important social skills that will last a life time….