Once upon a time, I was a camp counselor. I started at age 12 as a CIT at St. Martin’s Little School Little Camp and finished my career as the head counselor at the Contemporary Arts Center’s performing arts camp. I then went on to tutor at several elementary schools in college as part of AmeriCorps.
I learned a lot of silly songs, pulled a lot of loose teeth, and cultivated the skill of yelling at other people’s children.
Even now, I will sometimes see unattended children running when they shouldn’t be, and a part of my brain twitches and wakes up and bellows, “WALK PLEASE!”
And yet, now I find myself facing the job of planning a Halloween party for Georgia’s kindergarten class, and suddenly, I am paralyzed with anxiety.
First of all, I don’t even know what games are allowed anymore.
Bobbing for apples seems extremely unhygienic.
Duck Duck Goose is a perfect way for someone to break an ankle.
Piñatas are possibly cultural appropriation.
Also, I’m not sure about food.
We don’t have peanut allergies in the classroom, but we do have them in the school, so we need to be careful.
Cupcakes are loaded with sugar and artificial everything.
The vegan kids can’t eat any of the finger sandwiches.
Juice is just empty calories and leads to tooth decay, and I should probably just do water, but then I feel like I need to make cute labels for the water bottles, right?
And then there are class favors.
I want something original but not so original that there isn’t a printable of it on Etsy.
I don’t want to add even more sugar to their day, but I also can’t be the lame mom giving everyone raisins (which are essentially posion) or toothbrushes.
Georgia wants to hand out packages of “Scream of Wheat,” but that’s really weird because no one eats Cream of Wheat anymore, do they? And also I don’t want to have to design the label myself, and also also she’s going to change her mind about 25 more times between now and Halloween.
Kids were so much easier when they were someone else’s kids.
If you have any Halloween party tips or suggestions, please leave them in the comments. I need all the help I can get.