Halloween Tips for Building Neighborhood Connections & Supporting Children

halloween old imageHalloween is a perfect time to build connections in your community! Let’s make Halloween an asset-building experience for children by helping them feel more connected to their community. The Search Institute does it again in helping to frame this fun holiday as a way to support children! It’s easy and just these few ideas will make BIG difference for our kids!

11 Halloween Tips for Building Neighborhood Connections

  • If you don’t know the kids who come to your door, ask their names and grades in school.
  • Compliment (or get scared by) their costumes.
  • Ask the child a question or talk to them briefly before you give a treat.
  • Turn on a light so children will be safe.
  • Intervene if trick-or-treaters become disrespectful or damage property.
  • Invite kids with parents you know to come in for a short visit. (Don’t invite kids you don’t know inside.)
  • Offer to take a busy parent’s child or children out along with yours.
  • Share treats that reflect your culture or values.
  • Get together with neighbors to decorate together. (Make it more fun for kids and get to know neighbors at the same time.)
  • Remember to greet kids the next day–when they don’t have costumes on!
  • Consider making a special treat bag (with extra treats or extra surprises) for the children who live nearest to you. When these children arrive, make a fuss about them coming and say you have something extra special for them.

Want to share this with your neighbors and friends? Here is a handout: 11 Halloween Tips for Building Neighborhood Connections

Do you have other ideas for creating a safe, welcoming, community-building experience for kids? Please share!

Childhood Developmental Asset: The Building Blocks of Healthy Development

Developmental Assets is a phrase coined by the Search Institute to identify and define the building blocks of healthy development that help young children grow up healthy, caring, and responsible. Wow, that is a big deal! We all want our children to be successful and the Search Institute has done the research and spoken to the kids to develop a framework that parents and children can use as a resource. On their website, Developmental Assets are laid out clearly by the Search Institute and broken down into age groupings starting at 3 years old.

Developmental Assets are the basic building blocks of positive development. The positive experiences and qualities of these assets help children grow up to become caring, responsible adults. The Developmental Assets categories are the same for all ages because they are the same foundational values. What does shift is the detail of what children need at different times in their lives. The best part of the lists I am about to show you is that there are Action Steps for each of the specific areas. This offers parents ways to take small action steps to move you, your family, and your child toward a more healthy, caring and responsible foundation.

Developmental Assets for all ages: Support, Empowerment, Boundaries & Expectations, Constructive Use of Time, Commitment to Learning, Positive Values, Social Competencies, and Positive Identity.

Introduction to Developmental Assets video

  • Developmental Assets list for children 3 to 5 click here.
  • Developmental Assets list for children 5 to 9 click here.
  • Developmental Assets list for children 8 to 12 click here.
  • Developmental Assets list for children 12 to 18 click here.

Let me know what you think. Our family is trying to weave these assets into our lives, conversations, and actions. It feels right!