ESL Halloween Reading Comprehension

The following ESL Halloween reading comprehension will help you remember the Halloween vocabulary, as the best way to learn anything is by using it. You will have to use the vocabulary you have learnt to read the following passage and then answer the questions.

This ESL Halloween reading comprehension passage and exercise will help you learn all about Halloween.

The reading passage on this page is all about Halloween and the most common traditions that people follow when celebrating that day. Once you have read the passage you should look at the 5 questions that follow it and chose the best option (A-D) to answer each one.

If you need any help with the vocabulary when reading the ESL Halloween Reading Comprehension passage you can look at the ESL Halloween vocabulary page.

ESL Halloween Reading Comprehension Passage

Halloween is a celebration that happens on the 31st of October. It originally came from a Christian religious day. The 1st of November is All Saints Day, so Halloween is the eve or night before this. Nowadays it is mainly just an excuse for people to have fun.

The holiday was mainly celebrated in America and from there has spread to many other countries. It is meant to be the day, and mainly the night, when monsters come out of hiding. This means that people associate scary and frightening things with Halloween.

There are three main traditions linked to Halloween. The first is carving pumpkins, the second is decorating your house and the third is trick-or-treating.

Pumpkins are big vegetables that go an orange color when they are ripe and ready to eat. When someone carves a pumpkin they cut the top off it and scoop out all the seeds and flesh from the inside. Then they carve a pattern into the outside of the pumpkin. Often they cut the pattern so that there are holes into the center of the pumpkin. It is traditional to carve your pumpkin into a scary face. Then when it is dark you put a candle or light inside the pumpkin so the light shines out of the frightening face that was carved.

Then the pumpkins would be used to decorate your house. You would put them in a window or on the front porch so people in the street can see them. However, the decorations have become much better over the years. Now people try to make their houses look as if they are a haunted house by making skeletons to hang in the garden or putting tombstones outside the house. They might also make it look as if there are lots of spider webs. The people from the house try to make it look as scary as possible. 

Finally, children will get dressed up in costumes and go out trick-or-treating. This is where they go to people’s houses and ask for sweets or candy, their treat. If the house refused to give them anything then they would play a trick on the house. Adults do not go trick-or-treating, unless that are looking after children, but do often have their own parties at night. At these parties people would also be dressed up as monsters or anything else that is scary.

ESL Halloween Reading Comprehension


Reading comprehension questions that go with the above reading passage.

1) Why is Halloween scary and frightening?
        A) It is in the dark winter.
        B) It is when monsters come out.
        C) It is because it is Christian.
        D) Halloween is not a scary holiday.
2) Which of the following is not part of Halloween?
        A) Carving pumpkins
        B) Trick-or-treat
        C) Decorating your house
        D) Singing special songs
3) Where are pumpkins normally displayed?
        A) In cars
        B) On the front porch
        C) In the kitchen
        D) At churches
4) What do people try to do when they decorate their houses?
        A) Make them look scary.
        B) Make them look cute.
        C) Make them look old.
        D) Make them look bright.
5) Why do adults go trick-or-treating?
        A) To get candy and sweets.
        B) To have a party.
        C) To look after children.
        D) To give other children sweets.

Score =

Correct answers:



› Halloween

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