Not everyone wants to give out sugary candy at Halloween. But honestly, will raisins or bananas or Halloween tattoos really go over all that well with kids already high on sugar? Maybe not so much.
This year I’m handing out candy (Equal Exchange Organic Dark Chocolate Minis), but for a while I was brainstorming a cool non-edible treat – one that would go over well with kids and parents. I finally came up with one that’s really neat. Bonus, this cool combo Halloween treat can be easily throw together for very little money and in almost no time at all. You can also use this idea for very inexpensive Halloween party favors at home or school.
What you’ll need
I don’t really consider a Halloween treat inexpensive unless it comes in at $0.50 or less per kid, which this Halloween treat does.
The amount of supplies you’ll need depends on the number of trick or treaters you get. However, the break-down is as follows… the decks include 52 cards, so with one card per kid, that’s $0.14 each, plus one pencil for each kid at $0.24 and one treat bag per kid at $0.10.
Total cost per kid = $0.48 per hand out. Pretty darn inexpensive.
About this Halloween treat
The 52 Series by Lynn Gordon is an awesome series of activity cards for kids that cover all sorts of topics. Each deck of cards features 52 activities or ideas meant to spark a child’s imagination. For example, the 52 Series: Boredom Busters for Kids has 52 fun ideas for fighting boredom – see image of one such idea above.
There are TONS of fun 52 series decks to choose from beyond the boredom buster deck, such as…
- 52 Activities in Nature – this is the one I’d pick.
- 52 Cool Tricks for Kids – this one would be my second choice.
- 52 Creative Craft Projects
- 52 Rainy Day Activities
- 52 Fun Family Games
- 52 Great Art Projects for Kids
- 52 Alternatives to TV
The Dr Seuss Lorax Project Pencils are made with recycled newspaper and come in four different designs, all featuring the cute, tree-hugging Lorax. Alone, a pencil is kind of a shabby Halloween treat IMO, but paired with a cool activity card, it works well.
What to do about the treat bags threw me for a loop. If I was making this Halloween hand out, I’d want it to be as green as possible, which kind of eliminates lame little plastic baggies. However, you do need something to put the cards and pencils in, or they’ll get lost and ruined in loot bags.
I considered eco-friendly recycle content paper bags, but couldn’t find any big enough, plus, if it rains, they’d be ruined. Next I considered recycled plastic sandwich bags, which I considered ideal, until I realized, “Hey, a pencil is too long for a sandwich bag.” Then for about three seconds, I considered biodegradable treat bags, but honestly, I don’t think they’re worth the extra cost, not when they probably won’t really biodegrade.
Finally, I just said, I guess plain ol’ 4 by 9 inch clear treat bags won’t kill anyone. They’re small, so use less natural resources, and since you won’t be handing out candy in wrappers, it helps even out your packaging footprint.
How to make this Halloween hand out
Place one card from the deck into a treat bag, add a nice Lorax pencil and twist-tie the bag shut. On Halloween, hand out one treat bag per kid. Parents will appreciate the break from sugar for sure. Kids, once they chill out from that candy coma, will enjoy the activity you’ve given them.
Bonus tip: Think ahead about the age of your trick or treaters. If you get a mix of younger and older kids, make sure to divide up the activities into a younger kid pile and an older kid pile. For example, younger kids will do well with a card from the 52 Activities for Toddlers deck (shown above) vs. one of the decks with older kid activities.
PS, there’s a really cute 52 Christmas Activities deck if you’d like to think ahead for the holidays.