Students and staff express enthusiasm for Halloween through school traditions


Graphic by Brooke Dembin ‘22

Student and staff around the school celebrate Halloween through different traditions in class. Different sports teams, such as cheer, dress up for practice in spirit for the holiday along with the English department, who dresses up in a group costume.

Lucy Arrow '21, Paper Features Editor

From the wide variety of Halloween school events, including Spooktacular in elementary school to Monster Mash in middle school, all Westport Public Schools have found some way to celebrate the spooky holiday: Halloween. Despite the fact that what was scary in middle school (skeleton cartoons, witch costumes and Nickelodeon Halloween specials) is a little different from what is scary now in high school (AP classes, standardized testing and long hours of homework), teachers and students continue to find ways to bring that Halloween spirit to Staples.
During sports practices or in-class activities, the spooky spirit of the holiday is hard to avoid, whether you are a fan or not.
The Staples Cheer team is celebrating Halloween through different activities during practice. The team enjoys this time of year by having a Halloween-themed practice, in which all the girls dress up in costumes.
“It is very fun to have a themed practice for Halloween,” Remi Levitt ’21, junior mentor of the Staples’ cheer team, said. “Although we usually have to take off most of the costume when practice begins, it is still a super enjoyable tradition to see everyone get dressed up.”
Another location in school where there will be Halloween spirit is the library, which will have crafts and activities available to all on the days leading up to Oct. 31.
“e will be making Halloween-themed luminaries using vinyl stickers to decorate jars with haunted houses and jack-o-lanterns,” Tamara Weinberg, Staples librarian, said.
Students find that activities during school in celebration for Halloween are nice to have around the building. Having a break from the stresses of classes is appreciated and serves as a way to get in the spooky spirit.
“I love when there are fun Halloween activities in school,” Brayden Klein ’20 said. “It makes school more enjoyable and creates a fun atmosphere.”
Along with Klein, Annagrace McManus ’21 also believes bringing Halloween spirit to school is a good way to celebrate.
“Seeing everybody having fun while they dress up is always so great,” McManus said.
In addition, P.E and Dance teacher Jennifer Mitteness has planned to have her dance students learn a sequence to “Thriller” by Micheal Jackson. She believes this is a great way to incorporate the holiday energy into the dance class.
“I know a lot of high school students stop celebrating Halloween at this age,” Mitteness said, “so I thought dancing the ‘Thriller’ would be a fun way to get in the holiday spirit.”
Last year, the English department organized a group costume to show their enthusiasm for Halloween. Most of the English teachers dressed up as senior girls, coming to school in pink shirts, pink boas and crowns. English teacher Mary Kathrine Hocking explained how the group costume brought all the teachers together.
“I feel like any time that an entire department or group of teachers can dress up and show school spirit, it’s really special,” Hocking said. “We had a ton of fun decorating our shirts and we all put a nickname and our graduation years on the back like the girls at Staples do.”
Hocking also mentioned that some teachers bring in office decorations to get into the spirit of the Halloween season as it approaches.
“The English department always brings in decorative gourds to put on the lunch table for the Halloween/Thanksgiving season,” she said. “Last year, Ms. Fulco and Ms. Marlow made a whole Halloween-themed breakfast for all of us.”
The chance for students and staff to celebrate Halloween together allows for everyone at school to get into the spirit.
“Halloween activities around the school allow for both students and staff to get spirited together,” Klein said. “That’s why I enjoy it so much.”