The best scary stories for kids


Spooky campfire tales that won’t leave your kids screaming in the dark

If you remember being scared out of your pants as a kid by Are You Afraid of the Dark?, then these kid-friendly scary stories are going to look tame in comparison. But as a parent, this is great news. You can read these spooky tales to your kiddos on a dark and stormy night or around a swiss replica watchescampfire without worrying that they’ll wake up with nightmares later.

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For any time of year, we’ve found more than a dozen kid-appropriate spooky stories that your little ghouls and boys are bound to love:

1. The Hairy Toe

This spooky story is about an old woman who eats a hairy toe she finds in the woods behind her cottage. But what about the owner of the toe? An excerpt from the book Spooky Maryland by S.E. Schlosser, this tale has enough fantasy to it that it’s not terribly scary for the younger ones.

2. The Canterville Ghost

What about a family who turns the tables on their ghost? In an adaptation of the classic Oscar Wilde story, the tale of The Canterville Ghost shows how a whole family dealt with the ghost in their new home, and how they eventually helped him move on.

3. The Pleading Ghost

James M. Deem is an author of children’s books who has collected some of his favorite ghost stories and made them available in his Haunted House online. This story is from his book Ghost Hunters. The pleading ghost in this story isn’t very scary, but it is a little boy who died young, so this one might not be suitable for the youngest in the crowd.

4. Dem Bones

Is your little guy crazy for pirates? This is the tale of Captain Kidd and his band of pirates who bury treasure on the New Jersey shore, then come back to haunt the area. Retold by S.E. Schlosser as part of his Spooky New Jersey book, this tale will remind you of ghost stories from your days gone by.

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5. White Dog

Who doesn’t love a good dog story? Take one loyal dog, an adventurous boy, danger and a ghost and you’ve got a not-very-scary story for younger kids to enjoy. This is just one story available on the TLC website that your whole family will enjoy.

Next Up: Looking for Dracula

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