While kids have a blast trick-or-treating, consuming all that candy can be harmful to their teeth and their over all health. Here are some activities to extend their Halloween fun and eliminate eating mounds of candy.
- Do some educational activities with it. Depending upon the age of your children, have them practice adding and subtracting with smaller candies like M&Ms or skittles. Or put all of the candy in alphabetical order. Or sort them by size, shape, color, etc.
- Create a bartering system. Help them learn to make healthy choices while also learning about value. Trade in one piece of candy back into mom or dad to choose what to have for dinner, for example. Or trade in 5 pieces of candy for a higher-valued activity, like getting to go to a fun park or bouncy house.
- Assemble candy-themed crafts. There is no shortage of ideas on Pinterest, like this candy wreath.
- Experiment with it. There are some pretty fascinating things you can do with candy in the name of science. Check out this candy experiments site for lots of simple experiment suggestions!
- Decorate gingerbread houses. This is a fun and inexpensive way to use up candy you probably weren’t going to eat anyway.
- Donate to the troops through Operation Shoebox. Operation Shoebox volunteers welcome candy donations year-round, but especially for the holidays. Collect bags of individually wrapped candies; heat-resistant candy is best in warm seasons.
- Donate it to the troops through Operation Gratitude. Holidays are the perfect time to send a care package to a member of the armed services, letting them know we appreciate them! Operation gratitude has the “do’s and don’ts” of donating Halloween candy on their website. It’s also encouraged to write letters/cards to the troops to include with the candy in the care packages: Letter Writing Flyer.
- Give it to your dentist. A number of dentists around the country also “buy back” the candy and then take care of shipping it themselves to Operation Gratitude. Some local Dentists will pay you or give you coupons if you give them your candy! (Amount depends on individual offices). The treats will be packaged up and shipped to troops serving abroad through Operation Gratitude. See our list of dentists registered for the Halloween Candy Buy back in Central NJ.