Halloween Masks (any grades that have done parts of the face and colors)

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Name(s) of Teacher(s): Michelle Holliday

Class/Grade/Language Level: Elementary School (any grade that has done parts of the face and colors)

Textbook and specific lesson: N/A

Goal: Practice using colors and face parts while learning about Halloween

Preparation: Costume, stickers, Halloween pictures, Halloween shape outlines for masks (enough copies for all students, preferably printed on a heavier, sturdy type of paper), sample mask made from one of outlines

Class time: Full-class lesson

Greetings: In costume, greet students with “Trick or treat!” instead of or before the usual greetings. The HRT should help to get the students curious, asking them if they know why the ALT is dressed so strangely, if they know what was said, etc. This leads into the next stage.

Talk: The ALT talks about Halloween using pictures and big gestures to help the students understand. The HRT can step in with Japanese hints if necessary, but this should be a last resort. It’s fine for them to step in afterwards to confirm how much the students understood by asking them to repeat what the ALT said in Japanese.

Activity: The ALT points out that the students need costumes for Halloween, and explains how to make a mask, showing the sample they have made. I used 4 styles of outline (pumpkin, ghost, witch, and cat), allowing students to chose the one they liked. This activity can also be done by having the students draw the entire mask themselves, but using outlines cuts down on the time it takes as well as the number of times students give up, declare themselves unable to draw, and erase everything. After explaining but before the students start their own masks is a good time to review the parts of the face and colors, and to practice “Trick or treat,” which they will need later. The drawing of the masks can either be done completely freely, allowing the students to draw what they want when they want to, or by saying the face part that you want them to draw in English and then allowing them to get creative from there. The HRT and ALT should wander the class as the students make their masks to engage them and ask in English about colors or parts, and to encourage less artistically inclined students.

Final Stage: The students take their masks to the ALT, hold them up to their faces and say “Trick or treat!” The ALT gives the trick or treaters Halloween- or treat-themed stickers (real candy is also an option, but I find stickers are a lot less hassle since they don’t require dealing with likes/dislikes and allergies, and don’t have to be cleared with the school first).

Feedback: I originally planned this lesson with a presentation component, to increase the amount of spoken English. However, it proved mostly impossible to accomplish in one class period, so that portion was cut from the lesson. Also, the pumpkin outline was so popular that there were grumbles when they ran out and students had to pick from the other options, so if you expect a certain one to be popular you or the HRT may want to print extras of it.

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