Tricks and Treats: A Writing Lesson Plan for Halloween

By Cari Jackson 10.24.2016 blog

We know how tricky it can be to keep your students on task this week amid the flurry of Halloween parades, parties and festivities. So here’s a standards-based lesson plan that strikes a perfect balance between serious writing instruction and fun holiday celebration. This lesson may be used to introduce argumentative writing, support your continuing argumentative writing instruction, or review/assess previous argumentative writing in your classroom. All you’ll need is a large bag of assorted candy, and you’re ready to go!

Watch: “Halloween Round-Up”

Original Air Date: October 31, 2014

Whole-Class Discussion

Ask students, what are some different ways, as shown in the story, that people celebrate Halloween? Which way do you think is the most fun? Why? Class poll: How many students plan to trick or treat this Halloween?

Student Activity: Candy Judging

Randomly present each student with one piece of candy; use 4-5 different types of candy throughout the class. Be sure to keep in mind any allergies in your classroom. Ask students to brainstorm, creating a list of all the attributes of their particular candy. Then, ask students to brainstorm a list of reason why the other candy bars in the class are less desirable than their own. Next, tell students they will work together to create an argument proving their particular candy is the best.

Group Work

Place students in small groups with students who received the same candy. Ask students to share their brainstorming responses. Students then work collaboratively to choose the three best reasons why their candy is the best one, and the strongest reasons against the other candies. Remind students that all good arguments require the following elements:

  1. A Claim (Which candy is the best?)
  2. Supporting Evidence (Why is this candy the best? What makes it superior?)
  3. Counterclaims (What are the drawbacks to the other candies?)
  4. Concluding Statement (Summarize argument and make a lasting impression on audience.)

Argumentative Writing Prompt

Students work collaboratively to write one argumentative paragraph explaining the reasons why their candy is the best one in the class. Remind students that responses must include all of the required elements of argumentative writing.

Groups Present Case for Their Candy

Students select a spokesperson from each group to present arguments to the class. Ask students to decide which group’s argument was most persuasive, and why.

Lesson Extension

Encourage students to create an advertising campaign designed to “sell” their candy. Campaigns may be print, video, or presented live to class. Have fun and be creative!


  1. Tylerbeams

    People should save money for food not candy!

  2. Dragon897

    Totally with you there

  3. alexys

    i cant wait for tonight, my school is havin a halloween dance :O 😀

  4. Generation

    I agree that it is hard for kids to stay on task at school thinking about halloween and what they want to be for halloween

  5. carter

    hey if you want to do for halloween

  6. domonique

    candy is way to sweet

  7. LInzey

    Its hard to stay on task and NOT think about Halloween

    • akiso tennison

      i feel you

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