Great kids parties begin with a fun theme (see Kids Party Ideas) and are filled with fun activities.
Kids Party Activities
Games should be fun, age appropriate and active.
Basketball Hoops: This indoor activity can be easily put together with a clean waste paper basket, scrap paper to wad up and masking tape to put throw-lines on the floor. (Foam rubber balls can be used instead of paper.) Set up your own rules. Baskets made from further away can be worth more points.
Dress for Success Relay Race: Yes, it is possible to have an indoor relay race. Split your guests up in two teams standing next to each other, in line. Have two piles of random clothes (8-10 items is a good number) at the opposite end of the room, across from each team. The first person of each team quickly walks to their pile, put all of the clothes on over their own clothes and quickly takes the pile of clothes off again. They hasten back to the line, tag the next person and keep going until one of the teams completely finishes. That team wins!
Face Painting: Paint the children's faces with colorful face paints to look like the creatures or characters in your theme. Not sure how to do it? Look for instructions and examples online prior to the event. 10 Easy Face Painting Ideas
Find the Dinosaur Egg Hunt: Similar to an Easter egg hunt use plastic eggs that twist apart with little goodies inside. Plant them around the house and let your little dinosaur egg hunters go wild finding their treasures.
Pin the “Tail” on Anything: Whatever your theme, use a large picture of that theme. If you have an animal theme going, use a picture of any animal that has a tail. A Dr. Seuss party is also easy. Pin the tail or even the hat on the Cat in the Hat. Other themes may take a little more ingenuity.
Scavenger Hunt: Make a list of kinds of treasures the kids will be hunting for. Older children can actually go door-to-door with an adult chaperone to ask for items on the list. Scavenger hunts for younger children can take place right indoors. How? Place items or pictures around the house for them to find and put in their game bags. For instance, if you are throwing a Zoo Party, make a list of animals that you'd find in a zoo. Find photos of those animals that they are hunting for – tigers, monkeys, elephants – and hide them around the house. The first to get one of each animal on the list wins.
What kind of food do kids like? Foods that look fun are always a big hit. Cut finger-sandwiches into fun shapes using cookie cutters. Make open face sandwiches using ingredients like cut pepper, olives or pimento to make faces. Let the children make their own pizza or decorate their own cupcakes. Outdoor parties can include roasting hot dogs over an open flame (with adult supervision!) and making s'mores.
Every party goer should take home some kind of favor. Goodie bags are very popular. Many styles and types of goodie bags can be purchased from party supply stores but why not make it a fun craft project, too?
Paper Bag Puppets Make Great Goodie Bags! Start with a plain, hand-sized paper bag. (Brown lunch bags or small colorful gift bags work great!) Provide cut-outs of the characters that best go with your party theme.
For example if your party is a zoo theme you could use parts of tigers, elephants, peacocks and monkey faces for the puppets.
Give the kids the unadorned bag, cut-outs, glue, googly eyes, feathers, and glitter. At the end of the party, turn the puppets over and fill them with candy, trinkets, specialty pencils and mini-pads of paper to take home as their party favors!
Finally: have FUN!