Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Ten Fun Things to do with Leftover Halloween Candy (Besides eat it)


1. Sort it – Very young children love to sort things- by color, by shape, by size, or by type. Candy even adds sorting dimensions (chocolates versus non-chocolates, different flavors, etc.). Make it a race seeing who can sort the quickest, or just have a leisurely time sorting at your own pace. Either way, sorting can provide you hours of fun.

2. Make Jewelry I heard that candy jewelry made by preschoolers is really in this season and now you can have yours for free! Grab some yarn and tie together the bajillions of bubble gums and lollipops your children raked in for some candy chic necklaces and bracelets. Then create your own catwalk and have a fashion show!

3. Donate it – Many local area Meals on Wheels, nursing homes, and foster homes graciously accept leftover Halloween candy. Leftover candy (especially candy that isn’t specifically decorated for Halloween) is given to those in need and used for Thanksgiving and holiday get-togethers. Check with your local agencies for special guidelines. BONUS: This is a great opportunity to teach your child about giving back and having a giving heart.

4. Bake it in a recipe – Okay, so this one doesn’t qualify as a ‘not eating it’ idea, but there are so many great recipes that involve candy and cooking with your kids is a great way to bond and create special memories. Here’s a great blog post from Sugar Mama with 15 delicious recipes for leftover Halloween candy.

5. Make sentences – Candy seems to always have fun names, so what better way to work on your child’s reading and sentence skills than helping him make sentences out of the candy names? Here’s an example: ‘I used to think Mom and Dad were two big nerds, but now I know they are smarties!’ And here’s a simpler one for younger kids: ‘Parker is the cutest boy in the entire Milky Way!’

6. Use it as a currency lesson – Don’t want your kids that entire pillowcase-full of candy they brought home on Halloween? Have them exchange it either for money that they can use to buy toys (older children) or for the toys themselves (younger children).

7. Play Hide-and-Seek with it – Kids love hide-and-seek, so give the game a twist by hiding the candy instead. One person hides the candy (hide it in groups- chocolates, suckers, etc- so you won’t be searching for so many little pieces) and the other person finds it. If you have more than one ‘seeker,’ put each person in charge of a candy group (one person find the suckers, one person finds the bubble gums, etc.)

8. Weigh it – Do you know which weighs more, a Blow Pop or a Tootsie Pop? What about a dry piece of gum or a chewed piece? Milk chocolate or dark chocolate? I sure don’t.

9. Make it art – Got glue and paper? Make a candy collage! Your child can leave candy in its wrapper or take it out- either way her art will be beautiful and a great addition to your refrigerator.

10. Make it a science lesson – Which candies float? Which candies dissolve in cold water the quickest? Hot water? Which chocolates melt the fastest in the microwave? Your kitchen has all the tools you need to set up a candy science lab and have hours of fun and learning.


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