Fall is a great time to help your little one’s imagination run wild! Encourage imaginative play by dressing up and joining fall festivities such as trick-or-treating. Pick a fun, comfortable costume for your toddler or preschooler with these tips:
- Support your child’s creative side. It’s natural for children to explore magical possibilities. In their minds, they can transform into superheroes, princess fairies or their favorite cartoon characters. Allow your child to embrace these identities for trick-or-treating, as they are part of normal development.
- Get a head start. Ask your child what they want to be and begin the process of making or shopping for a costume weeks ahead of time, whenever possible. You’ll not only build excitement for your child, but you’ll avoid a meltdown in the middle of a costume store the day before.
- Try a DIY costume. If you plan to create your child’s costume at home, engage them in the process and ask for input. Making a costume can be a fun bonding experience and is a great opportunity to empower your little one to share their vision and ideas.
- Test for comfort. Have your child try on their costume at the store or at home to ensure they’ll be comfortable trick-or-treating. Be sure to check for scratchy fabrics or uncomfortable shoes so you can make adjustments.
- Watch the weather. Plan accordingly for typical weather in your area. If you’re expecting chilly autumn temperatures, add an extra warm layer, like a turtleneck or pair of leggings, underneath your child’s costume. Cold temperatures might require that a coat become part of the costume. If it’s likely to be a warmer night, choose breathable fabrics.
- Extend the fun. For preschoolers, identifying with the character they chose does not need to be limited to one evening or event. If your child wants to wear the costume around the house the week before or after trick-or-treating, let them!
- Prepare for scares. While trick-or-treating encourages imaginative thinking, little ones can be easily spooked by scary costumes or decorations. It’s important to remind your child what’s real and what’s make-believe, and to stay sensitive to their cues if they need a break or to go home.
Looking for more fall fun? Check out:
- Fall Family Bucket List
- Fun Fall Activities to Help Your Child Learn Spatial Concepts
- Fall Craft for Kids: Leafy Animals
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