It’s always bugged me a little that so many classrooms at our school have Halloween parties instead of All Saints parties, and while I am known to be the grumpy staff member about this, I have conceded that I am not going to win that battle at my school. But my hope is that this post could convince a few readers to try their hand at throwing an All Saints Party in their class this year. It’s just as easy as a Halloween Party, and because it’s the day after, parents could use your party as a way to offload candy and treats from the day before. Here are some simple ways to celebrate the saints in your class this November 1st.
Decor: I have this one pretty easy. As part of my Pick a Patron Saint Project, students create Facebook pages for saints. We hang these around the room. My students also create icons as part of the 7th grade art curriculum, so sometimes if the students have finished that project we have extra fancy decorations. Here are some ideas for decorating your classroom if you don’t have student art:
- Make tissue paper flowers. Many saints are connected with the idea of roses: Elizabeth of Hungary, Juan Diego, Therese of Lisieux, Rose of Lima and more.
- Hang a decorative mirror. Write the words “This is what a future saint looks like” on the mirror.
- Cut out a bunch of fun shapes. On each shape write a saint fact. For example, a cow could say “St. Brigid of Ireland is the patron saint of dairy farmers.” Or a sun could say “St. Francisco and St. Jacinta saw the sun dance in the sky in Fatima.”
Games: There are lots of ways to adapt fun party games for a specifically saint themed party. Obviously you may want to tailor your games to the ages of your students, but I’ve discovered that middle schoolers sometimes love the silly little kid games they played in elementary school. Here are a few of my favorite ideas:
- All Saints Bingo. At the bottom of this post is a template I made for my class, but I’m sure there are other versions online. I give the students the saint biographies at the beginning of the week so that they are familiar with each of the saints by the time we play.
- Pin the Halo on the Saint. In my class we will be using a poster of Saint Joseph, because he is the patron of our school. You can use any saint you like to play this version of pin the tail on the Donkey, You could also change what you are pinning depending on the saint. For example, pin the stars on the tilma, or pin the shamrocks on Patrick, etc.
- Saints Musical Chairs. In this version of the game, there are enough chairs for all students, and each chair has a picture of the saint on it. When the music stops, pick a random Saint name, remove that chair, and that student is out.
Food: I’ve always been a fan of themed foods, so here are some ideas that could be a lot of fun:
- St. Michael’s deviled eggs
- Angel food cake
- St. Lawrence’s grilled cheese
- St. Margaret of Antioch’s dragonfruit
- St. Lucy’s chocolate eye balls
I hope these ideas inspire some fun celebrations in your classroom! Let me know your favorite ways to celebrate the saints in the comments.