Yes, Halloween is coming, and yes, it’s a time where everyone’s talking about ghosts, ghouls and things that go bump in the night. But Halloween is also a daytime celebration. It’s not just about when twilight comes and trick or treating. It’s a great opportunity to introduce some Halloween playground activities for nursery and key stage one monsters.  

The spooky, high spirited fun of Halloween is perfect for the playground, and an excellent reason for children to get involved in all sorts of Halloween playground activities. Our suggestions here will help you to make your playground the spooky, exciting hub of Halloween.

At Discovering Days we’re all about promoting the power of play, and making the most of any opportunities for it. So, here are our Halloween playtime ideas to help you turn Halloween into an all-day event for kids.

image of children in fancy dress outfits for halloween playground activities blog

Pirates Ahoy!

Pirates, ships and ghosts go brilliantly together. It’s that spirit of adventure combined with sailing into the unknown. And, of course, the fantastic opportunities for dressing up – pirate clothing is always a firm Halloween favourite.

It’s time for everyone to climb aboard and enjoy the thrill of the open seas, with a dash of spookiness thrown in.

The pirate theme is a brilliant foundation for a whole day’s worth of activities, from hide and seek and haunted ships, to treasure hunts and terrible sea monsters.

You can adapt various Halloween playground activities to the pirate theme, such as turning Simon Says into The Captain Says, or walking the plank, where children have to try and keep on a straight line drawn in chalk on the ground.

Our Mayflower Wooden Play Boat comes from this sort of inspiration, as a piece of playground equipment that offers opportunities for combining adventure with learning.


Buried Treasure in the Sand

Where might you find buried treasure? In a sand pit of course. The sand pit is, essentially, a magnet for kids. They love messing around in it, so it makes sense to use it for Halloween playground activities.

You could bury items in it and give the children clues that lead them to it. Or it could be simply a kind of big lucky dip for them to rummage around in.

Bury different textures in the sand and enjoy watching the little ones squeal with delight and they try to guess what they have found.

Or, if you have slightly older and more adventurous key stage one and two children, you might consider turning the sandpit into a graveyard with headstones and skeletons laid about.

The Sliding Lid Sandpit offers a combination of sand pit, play surface and storage. It means that children can enjoy all fun of messing around in the sand, while having a solid surface to also play on and use as a stage.

Rear view of timber play boat from Discovering Days for schools and nurseries

It’s brilliant for acting out adventures and role-playing. For Halloween, kids could be Meg and Mog, the friendly witch whose spells always seem to go wrong, and her cat. There’s even an adventure involving a pirate!


Halloween Dressing Up Relay Race

Everyone loves dressing up on Halloween, but sometimes getting ready is half the fun! Well we have a fun Halloween playground activity that makes the most of the excitement and giggling!

The idea is simple: the children are in teams. Each team member must dress up in a costume when it’s their turn. Then they race to a marker across the playground, come back and have to get the costume off for the next person in the team to then dress up and repeat the race. Everyone gets to dress up and hilarity will definitely ensue!

Keep the costume easy to get in and out of, but with plenty of fun aspects such as wigs, hats, cloaks etc.


Walk Like a Creature Competition

Who can do the best zombie walk or ghostly wobble? Who’s going to be the most convincing creature lurching across the playground? This is the perfect Halloween playground challenge for kids. It sparks their imaginations, it’s funny and fun to do, and you don’t even need Halloween costumes to get everyone fully involved.

girl in halloween hat with pumpkin on her eyes for halloween playground activities


Halloween Playground Catch

Tig, tag or playground catch must be one of the oldest games ever. It’s something everyone knows, so why not give it a Halloween twist? Have two groups of children lined up at opposite ends of the playground. One team is witches, the other zombies (or another Halloween-themed character of your choosing). On your signal they must run and try and catch each other. If someone from the other team catches you, you join that team. The winning team is the one that ends up with all the members.

Tip: to distinguish the teams, have one team wearing suitably themed hats.

This Halloween playground activity is spooky fun that lets the kiddies burn off plenty of energy.  


Halloween Storytelling Time

When the children have had enough activity chasing each other around the playground, it’s storytelling time.

Halloween and storytelling go hand-in-hand, and kids like nothing better than an exciting story – just don’t make it too spooky for them. Even the oldest fairy stories can be scary, with princesses in towers, giants and ogres.

Once upon a time… these four words are magic, and you can get children completely involved in the moment; thrilled, excited and captivated.

Because storytelling is such an enduring, enchanting thing, we’ve created our special Story Time Chair to help immediately set the scene. It looks like it belongs in a fairy tale and it’s designed to engage children and encourage them to tell stories themselves, to be listeners and performers. It also comes as part of a set, with benches to help create a precious, storytelling playground space.story time chir for language and communication


Halloween Playground Activities and More

The playground is a wonderful space for children, and adding safe, outdoor playground equipment makes it even more adaptable and friendly for them to use.

Halloween is a great opportunity for them to explore all the playground has to offer, but their adventures don’t have to stop there.

Discover more about Discovering Days and what we can offer your playground. Please call us on 01282 416755 or email

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