Halloween

What is Halloween?

Halloween is celebrated on 31 October. The name is a short version of All Hallows’ Eve, the evening before All Hallows’ Day (also called All Saints’ Day) on the 1st of November. Many things we do at Halloween come from the Celtic festival Samhain.

Cover of Ghoulish get-upsIt is a time when we enjoy being scared by witches, ghosts and other creepy creatures! We might dress up, have a party, read scary stories or make some yummy treats.

The traditional Halloween activity of trick-or-treating is mainly followed in North America but is becoming more popular in New Zealand. Costumed children go from house to house, asking for treats with the question, "Trick or treat?"

Traditionally, those who refused to offer a treat might then have a "trick" played on them but this tradition is not followed in New Zealand. We're polite trick-or-treaters!

Halloween safety

It's good to have fun at Halloween, but to keep things from getting too scary New Zealand Police have some tips for safe trick-or-treating:

  • always go trick-or-treating with an adult
  • stay in areas that are well lit
  • only visit houses where you know the residents
  • be careful not to scare elderly people

In this video, kids explain how to stay safe when trick-or-treating.

Scary stuff at your library

We have lots of items on Halloween including: Cover: Goulish Goodies

Halloween decorations
Halloween stories
Horror tales
Ghost stories

Halloween websites

Halloween at Britannica Library Kids
Lots of information about Halloween and its history. (Access with your library card number and PIN / password)
Halloween at Learn English Kids
Games to play, stories you can watch and stories you can be in!
Halloween at PBS Kids
Have all the fun of Halloween with Arthur, Sid and Super Why. Play games, find costume ideas, make music and share your scary Halloween story.
Nickelodeon parents - Halloween
Crafts, recipes and party ideas with characters such as Peppa Pig and Spongebob Squarepants.
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