Celebrate Halloween in Early Childhood Education with DIY costume ideas

Friday, October 20, 2023

Helping children develop their creative minds is one of the most important aspects of early childhood education, and with so many families in Australia embracing the excitement of Halloween, making your own Halloween costumes is a great activity for children to do in early learning services.

While store-bought Halloween costumes can be wasteful and expensive, helping children create their own DIY costumes promotes creative development and is fun, budget-friendly and sustainable.


DIY Halloween costumes


Here are 5 spooky costume ideas which use kid-friendly craft techniques and upcycled materials.

DIY Halloween costumes

1. Wear-it-again Witch or Wizard

The witch or wizard is a classic Halloween costume which is easy to replicate using some old clothing and cheap craft materials like paper, paint and glue.

To make a witch costume simply get the children to bring in some old black clothing you can modify. Cut a ragged hem and glue on some stars and glitter for a touch of magic. While you’re working, ask what kind of magical powers they’d like to have in order to encourage imaginative play. Next, use two pieces of thick paper or cardboard to make a fancy witch’s hat. Check out these simple instructions and help the children get to work.

Finally, show them how to decorate a stick to make a wand. Add an old broom and zoom! off they go.

2. DIY Recycled Robot

Robots are a really fun concept for children to explore. We love this quirky costume idea which uses a cardboard box for the robot body and some recycled materials like duct tape and bottle caps for decoration.

If hot glue is not an option, use PVC to make robotic buttons out of coloured circles or painted paper plates instead. You might need to enlist the parents’ help at home, but this spooky robot costume is sure to stand out.

3. Upcycled Mummy

Mummies are a favourite dress up for Halloween and one of the easiest costumes to make. Start by asking children to bring an old sheet from home which you can then help them tear into strips. Show them how to wrap their limbs up like a mummy, making sure to leave gaps for hands, face, feet and eyes. Secure the bandages with craft glue, safety pins or simply by tying them off.

Make it extra special by adding some old bandages or fake blood. Abracadabra! You’ve got a super spooky, sustainable mummy and a great way to recycle old sheets.

4. Sustainable Skeleton

We’ve all seen those skeleton costumes in the shops, but you might be surprised to know how easy it is to make one using only two materials: black clothing and some white electrical or masking tape.

This eye-catching costume not only looks amazing, it’s also a fun way to encourage children to start thinking about the body. Check out these helpful instructions and start sticking!

5. Paper Pirate

There’s nothing more exciting than dressing as a pirate. This costume is super easy to make with children in early childhood education centres and only requires a pair of old black pants, a white t-shirt, paper, scissors, elastic and glue. Depending on your materials, children can make this costume as simple or detailed as they like.

First, cut a tattered hem for the pants. Help children to make an eye patch by cutting black paper into shape and securing it to the head with elastic or string. There’s the option to paint or draw a skull and crossbones, flag or other fun design onto the eyepatch using gold or white paint or pens. While you’re crafting, get children to imagine what it might be like to be a pirate. Tie a scarf around the head, slip on some boots and they’re ready to sail the seven seas.

Encouraging creativity in early childhood

Creating, discovering and experimenting with art, crafts and ideas is an invaluable part of early childhood development. Take advantage of the spooky season by encouraging children to get creative as you cook up some crafty Halloween costumes.

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