For students, Halloween is all about storytelling. Whether it’s through books, sharing spooky tales with one another, or the stories their costumes quietly convey, the creativity and imagination that the holiday inspires is a special treat for teachers.

    Reading books like Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark and Creepy Carrots aloud to your class is a great way to get students in the spooky spirit. Before reading, you can set the mood by dimming the lights and inviting students to sit around a makeshift cauldron or something else just as creepy, if they dare. And once you turn the final page and close the book with a quick slam, give your students a real scare by breaking some startling news: Now, it’s their turn to collectively craft a ghostly tale to share with the world.

    To inspire their imaginations and help them tap their imaginations to create something truly spooktacular, here are 11 writing prompts students, working in groups of 3 or 4, can use to give their story a frightening start:

    1.     One dark, stormy Halloween night, I…

    2.     I didn’t believe in ghosts until…

    3.     The old, abandoned house was covered with…

    4.     I jumped up from bed when I heard a loud…

    5.     I didn’t think the house was actually haunted until…

    6.     When the black cat crossed my path I…

    7.     I could no longer ignore the strange sound coming from under my bed, so I…

    8.     The monster that lives in my closet is very…

    9.     When the jack-o-lantern started talking to me I…

    10.  The spider dropped down onto my shoulder and then I…

    And the scariest of them all:

    11.  Come up your own spooky starter.

    After students complete their stories, compile them in a class book before dimming the lights and sharing their spooky tales with the whole class. Alternatively, students can use the prompts as starters for oral storytelling, which will come in handy the next time they find themselves around a campfire or somewhere else that calls for a story with scary twist.