Halloween STEM: Candy Towers and Haunted Houses

Halloween means a ton of candy, and for us, that opens the door to a fun engineering project for kids.

With Halloween right around the corner candy is everywhere you look. We’re taking that Halloween candy and turning it into a fun engineering challenge for kids.

This is a great project for kdis of all ages, and a great way to help kids learn to practice patience as well. Since I know it’s hard for little hands to not gulp down the candy, in our house we allow our kids to have a set amount at the end, if they manage to not eat any during. This not only helps with all the ‘can I have some’ questions, but also with their ability to focus.

Project Ingredients:

  • Candy corn
  • Marshmallows
  • Other candies
  • Toothpicks

How to make a haunted house with toothpicks and candies

  1. Use the candies to stabilize toothpick configurations.
  2. Build a three-dimensional structure, if you can.
  3. Try different candies!

halloween engineering challenge for kids

Engineering with toothpicks and candies.

Yep, it’s that simple. Just stick the toothpicks in a variety of candies and start building.

Of course, there are lots of things you can test with this fun fall craft.

  • How high of a tower can you build?
  • What candies work best?
  • What candies are the easiest to build with (and is this the same as the candies that work best)
  • Are cubes easier to stack than another shape?
  • Can you build a castle for Frankenstein?

There is a whole bunch of pathways kids can go during this fun fall craft. While they are building, it is likely they will fail. Either the tower will collapse, or the candies will split, or they will have to modify their original plan. All of these are openings for kids to learn about growth mindset. Just because something failed doesn’t mean they should quit. In fact, the mere act of trying again should be celebrated.

Life is a journey of learning, and growth mindset will help kids be successful in any career they choose down the line!