What to do with all that leftover Halloween candy? Toss it into the open mouths of these three greedy ghosts, and it becomes a fun game for one or a whole party!
Cardboard box (at least 12 inches tall and
18 inches wide)
Black and white tempera/craft paint
Scraps of orange paper
Metallic paint pen or permanent marker
1.| Find a cardboard box and use tape to close the open end.
2.| Use a pencil to draw three simple ghosts onto the box; give each ghost a different sized mouth.
3.| Then, use a craft knife (an adult’s job) to cut out the mouths.
4.| Next, cover the work area with newspaper. Paint the ghosts white and their eyes and the rest of the box (except the bottom) black. (Glitter can be sprinkled into the wet paint for an extra touch.)
5.| Allow the paint to dry and, if needed, give it a second coat. After the box is completely dry, add designs to the black background with paint or a marker, if desired.
6.| Now, cut three different numbers from orange paper and use a glue stick to adhere one to each ghost. These will be the points for getting treats into the mouths, so give the smallest mouth the highest number and the largest mouth the lowest number.
7.| The greedy ghosts are ready to eat! Predetermine the number of tries each player will get and how far back they should stand. Then Trick-or-Treaters can take turns tossing treats into the ghosts gaping mouths, scoring points for each successful throw. (Use math skills to keep score and the game has a hidden educational bonus!)
8.| When the game is over, players can reach into the mouths to retrieve the candy...if they are brave enough!
• Use cut paper instead of paint to create the ghosts.
• Simply paint or write the numbers on instead of using cut paper.
• Decorate the sides and top of the box with Halloween pictures or stickers.
• Leave the numbers off and fill the box with treats, for a Halloween decoration that dispenses party food or favors.
• To play in the dark, paint the ghosts with glow-in-the-dark paint, or put glow sticks inside the box.
• For a fair game when there are several players, only use candy that is all the same size (and unbreakable), such as salt-water taffy.
• Instead of trying to throw the candy in from a distance, place the box with the ghosts up so younger players can stand over it and drop them into the mouths.
• In place of candy, play with small inexpensive toys, like super balls or plastic spider rings.
• Award a prize to the winner; perhaps the contents of the box after the game.
• Make this project with witches or jack-o-lanterns instead of ghosts.
Pamela Maxwell is an artist, author and mother of two quickly growing boys. Her craft and scrapbooking projects have appeared in numerous books and magazines. She is currently working on a kids’ craft book and a line of kids’ party supplies. Photo by Pamela Maxwell.
Updated: September 12, 2017