Birthdays are magical when you are a young child. This is the only celebration where it is all about them. They have the seat of honor. People take their picture, and the gifts all have their name on them.
For years, children’s birthday parties were created and prepared by the child’s parents. They played a few traditional games, made a cake with sprinkles and candles, and everyone sang the happy birthday song. Then something changed.
Over time, parents began to compete with each other. They rented bouncy houses. Some birthday parties were given at amusement centers, they would reserve donut shops that would allow children to make their own donuts. As for the children, they have lots of fun but got much less attention as their guests were having their own fun.
It doesn’t have to cost a lot to be special
There is no reason why a parent of young children should put themselves in a financial bind to have a birthday party for a 6-year old. Get creative and let the birthday child select the theme. You do not have to buy entertainment.
Children love games. In this age group, children are too young to understand sportsmanship. They easily get their feelings hurt. So, give them games that everyone wins.
This is a favorite for kids everywhere. To begin, write “challenges” on slips of paper and place them in the balloons before you inflate it. Once inflated put all the balloons on the floor. When the music starts, the children start hitting the balloons into the air. When the music stops, whoever touched the balloon last has to pop it and do the challenges.
The challenges can be anything you want. Here are a few examples:
- Sing Happy Birthday song with a mouth full of crackers
- Try to touch your eyebrow with your tongue
- Spin around 4-times blindfolded then try to walk to the kids on the opposite side of the wall.
Older children challenges
For tweens you will need more difficult challenges. For example:
- Answer trivia questions
- Try to eat a donut on a string hanging from a tree branch or a ceiling fan, They must keep their hands behind their backs. The goal is to eat the donut without letting it fall.
Just like a cakewalk, except with prizes. Write numbers 1 through 30 on paper plates and tape them to the floor in a circle. Write numbers 1 through 30 on slips of paper that are placed in a basket.
Start the music. Each child must walk from one paper plate to the other. When the music stops, a number is drawn from the basket and the child wins a prize. That child is out and you will remove the plate he was on. Keep playing until everyone wins a prize.
Divide the children into two groups. Each group selects someone to be their mummy or an adult can be the mummy. Give each team a roll of toilet paper. The goal is to wrap your entire mummy, use all of the toilet paper and finish before the other team.
Scavenger hunt – with a twist
Note: for older children, you can have the traditional scavenger game. Hid items in your yard, home, or a park. Give the kids a list of things to find.
Younger children cannot do that game. However, you can adapt the game just for them. Divide the children into 2 or 4 groups. The adult tells the groups what to find. Each team has 10 different items to find. When one is found they race back to let the adult know what they found and she crosses it off the list. The list will contain things like:
- Find something red
- Find a cow
- Find a shoe that doesn’t belong
You will control the rooms they are allowed to search. You help them out by leaving out the things on the lists. You may tape a picture of a cow to the refrigerator. Place a sneaker between a pair of boots. Make it as challenging as the children are able to handle. For more game ideas click here.
Goody bags, cake, and candy
Most kids want a birthday cake at their party. However, there is something to be said about a beautiful candy buffet. Everyone gets to select their candy and they are given a custom drawstring bag, to fill and take home. And to make the kids feel special, you can find more interesting things to put in their goody bag, like small toys, painting kits or makeup.