October 31st is Halloween (That’s today!). Spooky creatures, creepy crawlers, and haunted houses come to mind. But Halloween might also be known as the day that kids all over the US are getting pumped up to put on their costumes and consume copious amounts of candy. So if your students aren’t really paying attention because they’re riled up just thinking about the impending sugar rush, why not embrace Halloween and teach them something while you’re at it?
The handy infographic below offers some fun facts about Halloween for you to share with your students and colleagues. Which facts did you already know?
Did You Know?
- The correct spelling of ‘halloween’ is actually ‘Hallowe’en’.
- Halloween celebrations date back 2000 years to pagan celebrations.
Halloween has several different names:
- All Hallows Eve
- All Hallowtide
- The Feast Of The Dead
- All Saints Eve
- El Dia de los Muertos
- The tradition of wearing masks comes from Welsh and Celtic traditions that claim the dead visit the living on October 31st. The masks are intended to keep the dead from recognizing the living.
- In America in the 1800′s, the end of the harvest season was celebrated by wearing costumes, eating sweets, and playing practical jokes on one another.
- The tradition of Halloween pranks started to turn ugly in the 1930′s and a movement began to substitute kids going door to door for candy instead.
- Bobbing for apples started with a Roman tradition to honor the goddess Pamona, the goddess of fruit trees.
- Jack-o-lanterns originated in Ireland as hollowed out turnips with candles in them to ward away the sprits.
- The color orange represents the harvest and the color black represents the darkness at Halloween.
- About 99% of all pumpkins sold are used for jack-o-lanterns.
- In the US, black cats are believed to be bad luck, as they were thought to be subordinates of witches. In England, white cats are thought to be bad luck.
- In the US, about 2 billion dollars worth of Halloween candy is sold annually.
- Halloween is the second most commercially successful holiday – behind Christmas.
- If you see a spider on Halloween it is said to be the spirit of a loved one looking over you.
- Halloween is the third biggest party day in the US behind New Years and Super Bowl Sunday.
- 86% of Americans decorate their homes for Halloween.
- In 2009, about $6 billion was spent on Halloween costumes in the US.