Unique & FUN Halloween Math Game to Review Any Math Skill

Looking for an easy and yet super engaging way to review math skills before a test? This Halloween math game can be easily set up and adapted for any math skill, but the fun twist makes it engaging for the whole class!

Are you tired of using the same old review games before math tests? Are your students sick and tired of study guides? Do you want to add a little fun and excitement to your test prep days?  Well, you’re in luck! In this blog post, I’m going to introduce you to “Ghosts in the Graveyard,” a game that can transform any boring test prep day into an interactive, collaborative math experience. While it’s perfect for Halloween, I’ve created templates for every holiday, so you can use them year-round!

Test review days don’t have to be boring!

*This is a guest post from Asia at The Sassy Math Teacher.

A Halloween Math Game for All Ages:

I first discovered this game during my student teaching days, and since then, I’ve made it even easier to play with a digital template. But don’t worry; you can still play it the original way if you prefer.

What I love about this game is that it’s suitable for any math classroom that knows how to add and subtract, and I guarantee your students will LOVE IT!

An Overview of Ghosts in the Graveyard:

Students work in teams to answer a series of challenges.

Correct answers earn them ghosts, which they can place on tombstones.

Materials Needed:

  1. 16-24 Review Questions (A study guide or worksheet you already have would be excellent!)
  2. Choose one of the following “Ghosts in the Graveyard” game boards:

Option A: 64 Miniature Ghosts Printed on 8 Different Colors of Paper, then Laminated and Cut Out (8 ghosts of each color; each team will be assigned a color).

Option B: Ghosts In The Graveyard Digital Template (I’ll share more about this later in the blog post!)

Materials Setup:

  1. Question Preparation: Transform the dull study guide into “Challenges.” Ideally, have 2-3 questions on each challenge. For example, questions #1 and #2 become Challenge #1, questions #3, #4, and #6 become Challenge #2, and so on. You’ll need a total of 8 challenges, each on separate pieces of paper. Make 8 copies of each challenge.
  2. Create a Graveyard: Draw 3 tombstones on black construction paper large enough to accommodate several ghosts. Set up a designated area in your classroom or learning space as the “graveyard” by displaying the 3 tombstones horizontally.
  3. Ghost Game Pieces: Prepare ghost cards – you’ll need enough for each team to have a total of 8, one for each challenge. Teams only receive a ghost AFTER they’ve correctly answered a challenge.

How to Play “Ghosts in the Graveyard”:

  1. Split students into teams of 4.
  2. Provide each student with a recording sheet to keep track of their answers.
  3. Place the challenges within easy reach for students.
  4. Once the game begins, teams work on completing one challenge at a time.
  5. When they finish, one student from the team brings the group’s recording sheet to you to have their answers checked.
  6. If all the answers are correct, give them one of their team’s ghosts and let them choose which tombstone to place it on. They can even put all their ghosts on the same tombstone if they prefer.
  7. If answers are incorrect, provide a hint and have them return to their team to fix it.
  8. Repeat until about 5 minutes before class ends.

How to Determine the Winner:

Each tombstone is worth a mysterious point value, which you pre-determine and keep secret until 5 minutes before class ends.

Once revealed, each ghost becomes worth a certain point value.

For instance, if Team #4 has 2 ghosts on Tombstone #1, and you reveal that Tombstone #1 is worth 3 points, then they have a total of 6 points.

The team with the most points wins!

“I like that you don’t have to be the smartest group to win!” – 7th Grader

Tips for a Successful Halloween Math Game:

  • The line to get challenges checked may get long. Consider playing on a day when you have an extra teacher in the room to help.
  • Group students with at least one friend in each group.

Ghosts in the Graveyard Digital Template for Busy Teachers:

If you’re short on prep time, you can skip the laminating and cutting by using the Ghosts in the Graveyard Digital template.

The digital template includes a digital graveyard in Google Slides, challenge templates, and recording sheets. All you need to do is add your questions, print, and make copies.

Find out more about the digital template set for Ghosts in the Graveyard here.

More Ways to Play “Ghosts in the Graveyard”:

  • Play it all year long with other holiday themes, such as “Turkeys in the Oven” for Thanksgiving.
  • Make one of the tombstones worth a negative point value for an extra twist.

Transforming a test prep day with a game like “Ghosts in the Graveyard” can make a world of difference in your classroom.

Give it a try, and watch your classroom engagement soar!

Are you ready to turn your next worksheet into a spine-tingling adventure?

Grab your FREE Ghosts in The Graveyard Bonus Kit here

Hey! My name is Asia and I am the face behind thesassymathteacher.com. Bethany invited me to write this guest post today because she loves finding ways to engage students in math class just as much as I do. Find more fun math resources on my website!

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