Inside: 100 children’s birthday party activities & games to do at home, inside and outdoors
Birthday parties. I have a love-hate relationship with them!
I love the party itself, when everything’s up and organised. I love seeing my kids having a blast with their friends.
But the getting-to-that-day. Not so much.
With 4 kids, I’ve already done a fair few birthday parties. But my youngest 2 (twins) are not even 2. So there are a whole heap more to go!
Always my biggest question, is: what to do with all the kids?
Having some good children’s birthday party activities will make or break the day. My eldest is going to be 9 this year so, again, the hunt begins.
After much searching we’ve come up with a list of the 100 best children’s birthday party activities. We’ve done plenty of these already and I’m looking forward to trying a few more at this next party.
Here you’ll find party ideas for indoors and out, activities and games for a birthday party at home!
Let the fun (and party games) begin.
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Tips for children’s birthday party activities
There are so many children’s birthday party activities in this list you may be wondering where to start and which ones to pick. Here are some tips to help:
Choose Age-Appropriate Games
This post is written for kids of all ages. Obviously some won’t be suitable for little kids and others won’t appeal to older kids. You also want to avoid activities thatrequire complex instructions for little ones.
The best way to see if something is age-appropriate is to have a practice run…
Practise Party Activities Beforehand If Necessary
Most of these children’s birthday party activities sound fairly simple and most are. But the kids may find them a lot harder!
I’d definitely recommend practising some of the potential party activities long before the big day, ideally with your kids, including the birthday boy or girl to be. This will give you an indiation of:
- how easy or hard a particular activity or game is
- how much your child enjoys it
- how much time it’ll take
- how it’ll work with multiple kids
Avoid competitive games with little kids
I would hold off on competitive birthday party activities for children under 5. The kids will need to be able to deal with the disappointment of losing. You don’t want upset little ones at the end!
Plan for Active and Quiet Activities
Incorporate a mix of active and quiet activities to keep the kids engaged and ensure a good balance of energy throughout the party. Active games can help burn off excess energy, while quieter activities provide opportunities for a little bit of calm. Not only for the kids, for the parents too!
If you have a birthday party theme in mind, consider incorporating activities that align with the theme. There are plenty of children’s birthday party activities in this list that will work really well with a theme.
Plan for Both Individual and Group Activities
For a good balance of party activities and games, include ones that can be enjoyed both individually and as a group. Also try to ensure some are non-competive.
Less Is More!
You don’t want to feel that the party is rushed and you’re having to hurry the kids along if they’re having a good time. Be prepared to drop an activity is time is running short, so start with those you think will be the most popular/fun
Prepare Backup Activities
Have a few backup activities or games ready in case of the unexpected, like unscheduled rubbish weather (like here in the UK!) or if an activity doesn’t go as planned. This means you can quickly move to an alternative option if necessary.
Prioritize the safety of the children when choosing activities. Ensure no choking hazards with little kids and minimise potential risk of injury, ensuring the party space is free of hazards, and any props/equipment are safe and well-maintained.
Be Flexible and Adapt
Kids’ preferences and interests can vary, so be open to adjusting the activities based on their engagement levels and feedback. Allow for some flexibility during the party to accommodate the children’s needs and interests.
Have Fun and Encourage Participation
Remember that the primary goal of a birthday party is for the children to have a great time. Be enthusiastic, encourage participation, and create a positive and inclusive atmosphere where everyone feels involved and included.
Super simple children’s birthday party activities
Here are some super simple party activities, with straightforward concepts and/or minimal prep or adminstration to run. Many may be more appealing to younger party guests.
1. Punch Prizes
Here’s a cute idea for a children’s birthday party activity from The DIY Nuts. It’s cheap and cheerful and will be lots of fun for kids that love to win prizes. That’ll be all of them, then!
Place small toys or treats in plastic cups and cover with sheets of tissue paper, secured with an elastic band. Glue to a board and your prep is done. Then each party goer can have a turn at punching a cup to find their prize.
Full tutorial from The DIY Nuts here.
2. Simple Treasure Hunt
Here’s a really easy children’s birthday party activity for little ones. No clues necessary. Simply hide small prizes or treats around the party area and have the kids search for them.
Doll out party bags for them to collect them in. If you want to ensure everyone ends up with the same number of treats, have all the kids empty their bags in the middle at the end and share them out equally.
3. Photo Booth
Set up a photo booth with fun props, like vintage hats, stick on moustaches, crazy sunglasses, wigs, feather boas and whatever else you can find. Have a camera ready to take photos (you’ll probably get the best photos with a camera set up on a tripod so everything and everyone should be in shot) and get shooting.
One of the adults can be the official photographer. Or older kids may want to trying taking the photos themselves.
Either way they’re going to love taking silly pictures with their friends! And you’ll have plenty of amazing mementos of the day.
Charity/second hand shops are great for finding interesting and unusual props. But if you don’t have the time, try these from Amazon:
4. Birthday I Spy
Here’s an easy children’s birthday party activity perfect for indoors or when everyone needs a breather! It’s ideal for early school age kids who love these simple worksheets.
5. Human Knot
If you’re looking for amsuing and simple children’s birthday party activities that involve teamwork but aren’t competitive, you’ve got to try the human knot.
Have the kids form a circle, reach out and grab hands with two different people across the circle. They must then work together to untangle themselves without letting go of each other’s hands.
You don’t need to buy or make anything for this one and it can get pretty fun as everyone tries to free themselves from the giant tangle.
6. Bean Bag Toss
A traditional bean bag toss uses a sloping board with a hole in but you can improvise and adapt as necessary. You could mark a grid on a large board or lie hula hoops on the ground.
For older kids, you can make it points based with each hoop or section of the board having a different point value. The child with the highest score after a certain number of rounds wins.
Simplify it for little ones and award a prize or treat for landing their bean bag in the hoop or on the board. Let each child have a go until they get a prize.
7. Balloon Pop To Activate!
Fill several balloons with small pieces of paper with various activities or challenges written on them – 1 per balloon. Have the children take turns popping a balloon and then performing the activity inside, such as hopping on one foot or doing a silly dance.
A simple kids birthday party activity that’ll be a great way to get the fun started!
This children’s birthday party activity is popular in the US but the craze is spreading far and wide! You can easily buy a pinata online (here’s a cute cupcake one) or make your own.
Then fill it with candy and small toys and tie it to the branch of a tree so it’s freely hanging at chest level. Now let the kids take turns trying to break it open with a long stick or plastic sword.
This is a fun activity that you can easily adjust for different ages.
For older kids you can make it a lot trickier and add to the amusement too. Don’t secure the pinata, but have someone holding the string at the other end, pulling it up and down. Then blindfold the person trying to hit the pinata.
It’s hilarious watching someone trying to hit a moving object they can’t even see!
Indoor competitive children’s birthday party activities
If you’re looking to add a dash of friendly competition to the day, try these indoor birthday party ideas at home.
They’re super entertaining and will have the kids excited, engaged, and cheering for victory! You’re sure to create unforgettable memories with these exciting children’s birthday party activities.
9. Marshmallow Towers
We love building marshmallow towers! Notice the “we”? These are not just fun for kids! These will appeal to anyone who likes building things and likes a challenge.
So the challenge is to build the tallest tower using marshmallows and either toothpicks or dried spaghetti within a certain time frame.
Tallest tower wins!
This is such a fun children’s birthday party activity that can be done in teams or individually. Bonus: even if you don’t win, you can eat the marshmallows afterwards.
10. Cupcake Relay (With A Spoon!)
Divide your party guests into teams. Each team must pass a cupcake from one person to another using a spoon held in their mouth. If the cupcake falls, they have to start over.
The first team to successfully pass the cupcake to the last person wins. Have some more cupcakes on hand for the winning team. Or let everyone have one! It’s a party after all.
11. Marshmallow Cup Toss
Each child has a partner and a cup. They stand a few feet apart and must toss marshmallows into their partner’s cup. The first pair to successfully get a marshmallow in the cup wins.
Try this before the party first so you can test out the best distance, which will vary depending on the age of your child. You want it to be challenging but not impossible.
12. Balloon Waddle
Challenge the kids to move from one side of the room to the other with a balloon between their legs.
You could make this a team event where members must relay the balloon back and forth. But for an activity for a little one’s birthday party, you could just keep it simple and give everyone a sweet or prize once they’ve managed to cross. Or even if they don’t manage…
13. Paper Airplane Challenge
Provide each team with sheets of paper and have them each create paper airplanes. They must then throw their airplanes, one by one. Measure the distance travelled by each. At the end, add up all the distances.
The team whose airplanes have flown the furthest in total, wins.
14. No Hands Balloon Relay
Here’s another fun children’s birthday party activity that’s popular with adults too.
Divide the party guests into teams. Each team has a balloon they must pass down the line. The challenge is that can only use their bodies. No hands!
The first team to successfully pass the balloon to the end of the line wins.
15. Stack Attack
A fun cup stacking and unstacking game. The kids start with a stack of cups, then on the word go, must create a pyramid an agreed number of cups wide. They must then take it down and put it back into a single stack as quickly as possible.
The fastest wins.
You could play this kids party game as a team or individually.
Cute themed children’s birthday party activities
Here are some simple children’s birthday activities that will work perfectly with a themed party. It should be obvious which one!
16. Escape Room
Escape rooms have become so popular lately and provide so much entertainement. This’d make such an exciting birthday party activity for older kids, athough will provide a lot more work to prepare.
You’ll need to develop a storyline with puzzles, riddles, and hidden clues that the kids must solve within a specified time frame to “escape” the room and achieve their mission. Provide guidance and hints as needed, while ensuring the challenges are age-appropriate and engaging.
Here are some escape room ideas to get you started.
17. Nail Parlour & Pamper
Of all the childen’s birthday party activities so far mentioned, my eldest daughter is bound to pick this one at some point! You’ll need a few other moms, aunties or grannies to help doing the manicures and pedicures.
Provide a decadent afternoon tea or a non-alcoholic cocktail with the birthday cake and it’ll really feel like an afternoon at the spa.
You could pair this with a creative party activity where the kids can make their own lip balm, bath bomb or bath salts. These unicorn fizzy bath salts are sure to be a hit.
18. Princess Academy
If you’re planning a party for a little princess and her royal friends, try a Princess Academy as a party activity.
Provide several different princess outfits, which they can dress up in. Alternatively, ask the party goers to come in the best princess outfit. Then they can start by making or decorating their own crown or tiara.
Next, princess etiquette. How to walk, curtsy, drink out of a cup and saucer and wave like a princess. Next tea and cake where they must practise their best princess manners.
End the Princess Academy some princess stories with certificates, marking their graduation from the academy!
19. Superhero Training Camp
Similar to the princess academy, but here the kids will learn how to be superheros – that’s surely the dream for lots of little ones!
Let the children create their own superhero identities by coming up with names, superpowers, and backstories. They can share their superhero personas with the group.
Include some super-hero themed games for a birthday party at home, such as an obstacle course or target practice. Little ones will enjoy something creative, like mask making.
The children can come dressed in superhero capes and will love running around on a missiont to save the day! At the end, award them with certificates to mark their graduation from the training camp.
20. Adopt A Puppy
This is such a sweet idea for kids that love animals and would love one of their own. Again, a bit of prep and stock of supplies to set this one up, but you won’t need to worry about party favors, as the kids will get to take home their newly adopted puppy!
You’ll need some soft toy dogs (or collect some second hand ones from garage sales etc), some tiny dog collars (or DIY some with ribbon) and some craft paper boxes – these will be dog carriers! Too cute, right?
Set up a puppy adoption basket, with all the dogs awaiting collection. Each child can choose a dog and a carrier. They can decorate the carrier and learn all about how to look after their new puppy.
At the end they’ll earn a puppy adoption certificate.
1 minute games for a birthday party
If you’re looking for quick games for a birthday party at home 1 minute games are a good choice. Hopefully, no need to explain why!
They’re inspired by the popular TV show “Minute to Win It”. Not only quick, they’re simple, fun, and engaging and ideal children’s birthday party activities.
They are often done in small groups but lots are individual.
You could do a number of different 1 minute games and make it a team event. Each team puts forward a party goer to play one of the 1 minute games. Keep a tally to see which team wins the most games.
This will promote friendly competition and teamwork among the kids and make for a lively and energetic children’s birthday party activity!
21. Balloon Pop Team Contest
Divide the kids into two teams and have them race to pop balloons by sitting on them. The team to pop the most balloons in a minute wins.
22. Hula Hula!
Can anyone hula hoop for a whole minute? That takes some doing. Challenge the party goers and anyone that makes the full minute will definitely deserve a prize.
23. Ping Pong Bounce
Here’s a child friendly version of the popular drinking game, beer pong. (Which, of course, I’ve never played.)
Give each child a ping pong ball and a cup and challenge them to bounce the ball into the cup as many times as possible in one minute. The child with the most successful bounces at the end of the minute wins.
24. Straw Race
Give each child a straw and a small object like a pom pom or a bead and challenge them to blow the object across the floor. The child who blows the object the furthest in a minute wins.
25. Cup Stacking
You’ll need a lot of plastic cups for this one, at least 20. Taking it in turns, or 2 at a time, one from each team, challenge them to stack the cups one on top of each other as pictured, no pyramids allowed!
The child with the highest stack after a minute wins. You can either measure the tower or count the number of cups used in the tower.
This children’s birthday party activity is best done indoors so there’s no chance of wind knocking the towers down mid game.
26. Tissue Box Shake
For this fun children’s birthday party activity you’re going to have to fix an empty tissue box to a belt. Punch holes in the tissue box and use string or a cable tie. Then make another one for the other child.
Now fill it with ping pong balls and attach it to the back of each child’s waist. Challenge them to shake as many balls out of the box as they can in one minute.
The child who shakes out the most balls at the end of the minute wins.
Expect lots of jumping about and loads of giggling from everyone watching!
You’ll need to experiment with this one and perhaps adjust the time dependent on your ping pong ball and tissue box combination. When we tried this we adjusted down to 45 seconds as the balls come out too easily.
27. Chopstick Pick Up
Pour a pile of small objects like toothpicks or matchsticks onto a table and challenge the kids to pick up as many as possible in 1 minute. With chopsticks!
The child with the most objects picked up at the end of the minute wins.
28. Cotton Ball On A Spoon
Each child must move cotton balls from one bowl to another using a spoon they’re holding in their mouth. The child to move the most cotton balls in a minute wins.
29. Word Chain
Each team forms a circle, and one person starts by saying a word. The next person in the circle must quickly say a word that starts with the last letter of the previous word. The chain continues, and the team with the longest word chain within one minute wins.
30. Ping Pong Pass
This competive children’s birthday party activity is a cross between the cotton ball on a spoon game (above) and the classic egg and spoon, since it’s more of a team relay game.
Set up two bowls with ping pong balls at one end of the room and two empty bowls at the other end. Each team must use a spoon to transfer ping pong balls from one bowl to the other within one minute.
The team with the most ping pong balls in the destination bowl wins.
Children’s birthday party activities that double as snacks
Are you looking for a way to combine fun and deliciousness at your child’s birthday party? Here’s a mouthwatering lineup of children’s birthday party activities come party treats that’ll not only keep the kids engaged but also satisfy their appetites. Win win!
31. Cupcake or Cookie Decorating
Set up a cupcake or cookie decorating station with frosting, sprinkles, and other toppings. Keep it simply by buying store bought cupcakes/cookies and let the kids do the decorating.
They can enjoy their delicious creations afterward or take them home in their party bag for later.
32. Pizza Making
My kids love making pizzas! If yours does to, this could be the perfect birthday party activity – we did this at my daughters last party. Of course, the pizza makes for a filling and sugar-free snack to keep those tummies full.
Have all the pizza toppings, sauces and bases ready to go. Younger children may need a helping hand – you may find it easier for the kids to go one by one, before you end up with pizza sauce all over the floor!
33. Sundae Bar
Set up an ice cream sundae station with different flavors of ice cream, sauces, whipped cream, sprinkles, nuts, and other toppings. Each child can build their own custom sundaes with their favorite ingredients.
You could offer cones or cups – I’d opt for smaller ones if you have little kids, to avoid too much of a sugar high!
If you don’t have a sink nearby, make sure you have a basin of warm soapy water and some hand towels ready to clean up all those sticky hands.
34. Fruit Kebabs & (Optioal) Chocolate Fondue
Prepare a selection of fruits, such as strawberries, pineapple chunks, grapes, and melon. Provide skewers and let the kids create their own colorful and healthy fruit kebabs.
You could combine this with a chocolate fountain. The kids will love dousing their fruity kebabs with warm melted chocolate. As will all the parents!
Hand wipes at the ready…
35. Popcorn Bar
Popcorn is another favorite with kids and relatively cheap and easy to prepare. It’d be great to accompany a film party for older kids.
Simply prepare bowls of plain popcorn and offer a variety of seasonings and toppings like butter, cheese powder, caramel, chocolate drizzle, and flavored salts. The kids can mix and match the toppings to create their own personalized popcorn snacks.
36. Pancake or Waffle Bar
Set up a pancake or waffle station where the party goers can collect a hot pancake or waffle and then add their own toppings. You can offer chocolate chips or sprinkles, fruit, maple syrup, nuts and whipped cream.
This would make a lovely children’s birthday party activity and delicious breakfast-themed treat.
37. Build-Your-Own Taco or Nacho Bar
For kids with a slightly more sophisticated palate, try a taco or nacho bar. Lay out a spread of taco or nacho ingredients like tortillas, seasoned meat, beans, cheese, salsa, guacamole, and sour cream.
The kids can assemble their own tacos or nachos to their liking and indulge in a savory meal.
38. Smoothie Station
Another popular option and a lot healthier than most of those already mentioned, is for the kids to make their own smoothies. We do this a lot in the summer and their kids love trying out new combinations of fruits, nuts and nut butters. They also now happily add spinach, knowing they can’t taste it!
Lay out a variety of different ingredients and get the kids to select their ingredients of choice and place them in a bowl. They can then take it in turns to make a smoothie, by adding milk and jogurt to the blender along with their chosen fruits and other ingredients.
They’ll love trying out their unique concoctions.
Crafty & creative children’s birthday party activities
In this section you’ll find simple creative activities to ignite your party goers imagination and leave them with unforgettable memories and a unique masterpiece to take home.
39. Make Fairy Wishing Bottles
Here’s a sweet and creative activity for a party with a fairy theme. Ideal for a spring or summer party when there should be plenty to choose from outside. Simply send your party goers to find items for their wishing bottle. Alternatively, to protect your garden, provide a selection on a table.
You could offer faux leaves and flowers in the winter. Whatever the tie of year, be sure to add a little glitter to finish!
40. Mask Making
Little kids love the world of make believe, dressing up and wearing hats and masks. So set up a mask-making station with mask templates, markers, and other materials for the kids to color and decorate their own animal masks.
This crafty children’s birthday party activity will work really well with so many different themes. Superhero mask for a superhero theme, cat mask for a cat-themed party, unicorn mask and so on…
41. Make Slime
Kids love playing with slime and at a certain age, around 6 or 7, it makes a fun task to get them involved in making a batch at home. So why not try slime making as a party activity?
It may be suitable for a party for younger kids if you have plenty of adult helpers on hand. Here’s a popular slime recipe plus plenty of tips for avoiding too much mess and stickiness.
If you don’t want to try this is an activity, you could always make a batch of slime to give away as party favors. (Or take the easier route and buy slime here, it’s not expensive.)
42. T-shirt Tie-Dying
Set up a tie-dye station for the party goers to tie-dye a white shirt some funky colors of their choice. This one is better done outside, for obvious reasons.
43. Jewelry Making
A selection of beads, string and perhaps a charm or two is all you need for the perfect children’s birthday party activity for jewelry loving little girls.
44. Birdhouse Decorating
If your child loves being outside and enjoys watching the birds, then they’re sure to love decorating their own birdhouse with all their friends. Simply but some pre-cut wooden birdhouses and paint and you’re all set.
45. Painting Party
My daughter went to a painting party where the activity was organised by a painting tutor. But having seen it in action, this could easily be done at home, with the help of a tutorial.
You can also buy a set of painting party supplies which includes everything you need.
It may not look like it from the picture above, but my daughter and her friends, painted a horse eating grass in the sunset! They started by painting the sunset background with yellows, oranges and reds. Then painting the sun on top, in white. Last came the horse and grass.
I’d highly recommend this children’s birthday party activity if your child likes painting. My daughter loved it!
46. DIY Dream Catchers
Dream catchers make a lovely accessory for a kids bedroom so why not have all your party goers make some as an activity.
Dream catcher kits are easy to come by but can be rather pricey. If you go this route be sure to check the complexity and skill level required to make them and ensure this will suit the age of the kids.
However, it’s easy to buy your own supplies (wooden craft hoops, yarn, ribbon, wooden beads, feathers, washi tape and other embellishments) and make your own. Try this dream catcher tutorial for something beautiful yet simple – our version is pictured above.
47. Create Mini Gardens
I remember doing this at primary school as a school competition and absolutely loved it. There’s no doubt that this would make a fab children’s birthday party activity and I cannot wait to try it out with one of my kids.
It does involve a bit of prep and is best done outside with free access to plants, grass, pebbles and other natural items. You could do it inside, you’d just have to do all your foraging and collecting first.
You’ll need a large tin or old plastic plant pot, the shallower the better. Plastic plant saucers will also work well. Cut some oasis to fit – the squishy foamy stuff that florists use for fancy floral arrangements.
Then it’s time to make the mini gardens! Stick grass into the oasis to create a lawn, tiny branches with small leaves will be trees, turn tiny stones into a garden path and so on. If you don’t have much variety supplement with faux leaves and flowers.
You could also buy some tiny fairy doors and other accessories and turn them into fairy gardens.
Love crafting with your kids? Try these seasonal crafts:
- 45 Cute Valentine’s Day Arts, Crafts & Cards for Kids
- 45 Cute Mothers Day Crafts for Kids
- 35 Fun & Easy Mummy Crafts for Halloween
- 29 Scarily Easy Skeleton Crafts for Kids
- 47 Cute Easy Christmas ornaments To Make With Kids
Music & dance children’s birthday party activities
Here are some simple energetic ways to incorporate music and dance into your child’s birthday celebration. All golden oldies, with good reason. They’re fun and entertaining and loved by kids. (Some by adults too!)
48. Musical Chairs
Musical chairs is a classic birthday party game and activity that kids young and old love. All you need are chairs (1 less than the number of party goers), music and space.
Play the music while the kids walk or dance around the chairs. When the music stops, they have to race to sit on a chair. But there aren’t enough – the one who is left standing is out.
Remove another chair and carry on.
It’s normal to have the chairs in a circle or two lines back to back. However, you can also try them in two lines at either side of the room or put a few in each corner.
Make sure everyone keeps dancing and moving and doesn’t just hang around the chairs waiting for the music to stop!
Here’s a fun children’s birthday party activity that’ll appeal to kids that love to sing. I’m sure my daughter would love to try this at her party when she’s a little older.
Try to find out some of the party goers favorite songs in advance, so you can be sure to have them on the karaoke machine. Then let the kids sing their hearts out!
(Consider investing in some ear plugs…)
50. Freeze Dance
Freeze dance, or musical statues as I know it, is another golden oldie of the musical birthday party activities for children. Simply put on some music and have the kids dance. When the music stops, they have to freeze or stand like a statue, depending on where you’re from!.
51. Hot Potato
Pass around a small ball or stuffed animal while music plays, and whoever is holding the “hot potato” when the music stops is out.
Little kids can sit in a circle while they pass the hot potato around, while older ones can stand in a circle at arm lengths to make it a little trickier.
52. Pass the parcel
Pass the Parcel combines anticipation, excitement, and a bit of luck, making it a favorite activity at children’s birthday parties.
It’s another, “when the music stops…” game. This time, when the music stops, the child holding the parcel unwraps one layer, revealing a small prize or treat. The game continues until the final layer is unwrapped, and the child who unwraps the last layer gets to keep the central prize.
Of course, to avoid upset, take the luck out of it and ensure everyone gets a chance to unwrap the parcel and get a treat.
Games for birthday party at home that involve eating!
These games add a fun element to the party while at the same time involving something sweet and a bit naughty!
Remember to consider any dietary restrictions or allergies – I always add this to the party invite – and provide suitable alternatives if needed.
53. Whipped Cream Challenge
Here’s a messy edible children’s birthday party activity that’s sure to get a lot of giggles. Give each child a plate of whipped cream and challenge them to find a piece of candy hidden inside without using their hands.
Stay away from small, hard choke hazards – I’d recommend hiding a small chocolate bar that’s a little bit chewy so can’t be eaten too quickly.
The prize is, of course, the sweet, cream covered, treat. So everyone’s a winner.
There will be lots of whipped cream faces by the end! Get your camera ready.
54. Cookie Face
Each child places a cookie on their forehead and tries to move it to their mouth without using their hands. The first child to successfully eat the cookie wins. But everyone will hopefully get their cookie prize eventually.
If the cookies falls off onto the floor, you can decide if the child is out or if they can put it back onto their forehead and start again. One to try at home beforehand, to ensure it’s not too difficult for your child’s age.
55. Doughnut on a String
Doughnuts on a string is normally considered a Halloween activity, but it’s great fun for a birthday too.
Hang doughnuts on strings at different heights. The kids have to eat the doughnuts off the string without using their hands. The one who finishes eating their doughnut first wins.
Again, no one comes away empty handed with this one as they all get to enjoy a sweet and sticky doughnut.
Hand towels at the ready!
56. Fruit Roll-Up Challenge
Here’s a children’s birthday party activity with a treat that’s slightly healthier than the last. The edible and prize in question is a fruit roll-up. My kids have just gotten into them. If you’re not sure what they are, they’re long and chewy and made entirely of dried fruit.
The challenge is simple: to see who can eat the entire roll-up the fastest without using their hands!
57. The Chocolate Game
I don’t understand how, in researching this post, I’ve not come across “The Chocolate Game”! It was a favorite in my childhood and it is with my kids too.
Divide the kids into small groups of 3 or 4. For each group you’ll need a fancy dress outfit, large slab of chocolate, a knife and fork and a dice.
The winning is in the eating of the chocolate! That’s central to the game. The challenge is to eat it while dressed up with a knife and fork. You also need to roll a 6 or a 3 to be able to have a go.
So player 1 rolls the dice. If they get a 3 or 6, they have to put on the outfit and can then start cutting up and eating the chocolate.
In the mean time, the other players are frantically rolling the dice to get a turn and stop that person from eating.
Keep going until all the chocolate has gone!
For easy, edible fun, this children’s birthday party activity works like a treat…
Fun water based children’s birthday party activities
Here’s some watery fun birthday party activities that’ll keep the kids cool and entertained. Make sure you ask everyone to bring their towels, and put on swimsuits, and get ready for a splashing good time!
Pass the Sponge
Here’s a fun water activity and game that’s dead simple to set up. All you need is 2 sponges and your party goers organised into two teams.
The first person in each team gets a sponge that’s been dunked in water first. They must pass the sponge over their heads to the person behind them, who then passes it between their legs to the next person.
The last person throws the sponge back to the beginning and the whole team sits down to signal they’ve finished. The quickest team wins.
The faster you pass the sponge, the wetter the party goers will get! So the winners will also likely be pretty wet.
58. Water Balloon Toss
Divide the kids into pairs and give each pair a water balloon. They have to toss the water balloon back and forth, without it breaking. After each successful catch they must take a step back.
The pair who have successfully passed the water balloon the greatest distance, without it breaking, wins.
59. Bucket Brigade
Here’s another team birthday party activity for kids that involves passing. This time cups of water!
Line up the kids in teams and give the first person in each team a bucket filled with water. They must quickly pass the water from one person to the next, using cups, to fill up a container at the end of the line.
The team that fills the container first wins.
60. Water Gun Fight
Simply let the kids play and shoot each other with water guns. Such fun for a children’s birthday party activity. No contest needed!
For little ones, give them spray bottles instead.
61. Water Limbo
Instead of using a stick, turn the hose on and have the kids take it in turns to limbo under the water. After all the kids have been, hold the hose lower for the next round. If you fail to limbo low enough you’ll just get wet!
Just like the classic version, the winner is the one who manages to limbo the lowest.
A simple game for the hot summer months.
62. Slip ‘n Slide
Playing on a slip ‘n slides is such a fun outdoor activity for a hot summers day. Definitely don’t save this just for birthday parties!
You can buy a slip ‘n slide which connects to a hose to keep a tiny flow of water over it. Or simply use a large tarp and hold the hose. Add a tiny bit of dish soap to make it super slippery!
Just make sure the kids go one at a time, as they can get going pretty fast, even without an incline!
63. Water Relay Race
Set up two buckets filled with water one side of your garden or backyard, two empty buckets the other side.
Divide the kids into teams and give each team a cup or small watering can. They have to fill their cup or sponge with water from the bucket, run to the other bucket, and transfer the water into it.
The first team to transfer all the water (or most of it) wins.
64. Water Balloon Piñata
Hang water balloons from a tree branch or clothesline. Blindfold each child and let them take turns trying to break the water balloon with a stick or bat.
When the balloon breaks they’ll get a face full of water! Probably not for little kids, but the older ones will find this hilarious.
Make sure to have towels ready for drying off.
65. Water Treasure Hunt
Here’s a fun children’s birthday party activity for those confident and stable in the water. It’s definitely not for tiny tots.
Hide small waterproof toys or objects in sand and under rocks or stones in a swimming pool or paddling pool. The kids can jump in and search for the treasures. You can let each have a turn at finding a hidden treasure.
Or add a competitive element, so that the child who finds the most items within a certain time limit wins.
(I’m sure it goes without saying, but don’t leave kids around water unsupervised.)
66. Apple bobbing
You’ll need a big tub of water filled with floating apples for this classic outdoor children’s birthday party activity The kids must run over and pick up an apple from the water, using only their teeth!
It’s best done as a team where the kids relay back and forth to bob apples.
It’s quite tricky and very wet. Towels at the ready…
More outdoor kids birthday party activities & games
With outdoor games you can get the kids moving and burning off energy, great for gross motor skill development, all while having fun. Here are some children’s birthday party activities ideal for outdoor play, this time not involving water.
Time to soak up the sunshine, embrace the fresh air with these outdoor kids party games and activities!
67. Bubble Station
Here’s a simple birthday party activity for little kids. Bubbles, bubbles and more bubbles!
What am I saying – my 6 year old daughter still loves bubbles, as does her 10 year old cousin! Bubbles are fun for babies too.
You can set up a bubble blower for tiny tots who can’t blow their own bubbles. They’ll love chasing and popping them.
For the older ones, set up a bubble station with a bubble wand set. These sets have loads of different bubble wands of all shapes and sizes. As well as a few trays to hold the bubble solution.
Get involved and help the kids so unique and interesting bubbles!
68. Draw With Sidewalk Chalk
Here’s a cute and creative children’s birthday party activity that needs a large patio, paved area or white painted concrete or stone wall.
Once you’ve made some simple sidewalk chalk, as per this recipe from Two Pink Peonies, the party goers can draw and decorate as they please. A quick hose off is all that’s needed for clean up.
You can also try this on wooden fencing, but it may be harder to wash off so do a test area first.
69. Giant Jenga
Giant Jenga is another classic game for outdoors that’ll make a fun birthday party activity for kids that love to build and like a bit of competition too.
70. Nature Scavenger Hunt
A simple pictoral scavenger hunt is such fun for little ones and great for so many cognitive skills. If you have a big garden or are close to a lovely park, this would make an easy children’s birthday party activity for outside.
Download the PDF printable here.
71. Laser Tag
Laser tag was one of my favorites when I was growing up a million moons ago. Sob. My brother and I loved going to a laser tag or laser quest venue. But you can set this up as a kids party game for outdoors at home, by renting a laser tag set.
The party goers can have an exciting game of laser tag in your backyard or a nearby park.
72. Nerf Gun Battle
Most households with kids of a certain age have a nerf gun or 6 lying around the place. And find nerf bullets in every nook and cranny. (Just us?!)
So why not organise a nerf gun battle as a children’s birthday party activity. You can make some targets (or buy some here) and make/arrange obstacles to hide behind.
I’d also recommend some safety glasses.
Divide the kids into teams, assign a home base and agree some rules. Then let the battle commence!
Twister is another game popular with young and old. And I don’t just mean kids… So why not try it at as an activity at your child’s birthday party? Possible indoors, but better as an outdoor kids party game.
Grab a twister board and get tangling!
74. Capture the Flag
This classic game involves lots of running around, ideal for the sugar rush after the cake! Very much an outdoor kids party game – the more space the better.
It was very popular at my little boy’s birthday party.
Split the kids into two teams, each with a flag. They must try to steal the opposition’s flag without being tagged.
75. Three legged Race
Here’s a fun and energetic kids party game for outdoors. We used to do three legged races at school sports day and I loved it so much we always did it at birthday parties too!
Organise the kids into pairs, ideally of similar height. They must stand next to each other, then tie their 2 legs closest together, with a jumper or scarf. This leaves them with 3 working legs.
Now they must coordinate together to be able to walk and possibly even run. Now it’s time to race.
Incredible fun and simple too.
Classic party games for a kids birthday party at home
Here are some beloved games and kids birthday party activities that have stood the test of time. Some are better done outside but there are plenty of indoor birthday party ideas to try at home.
Get ready to gather the kids and ignite their spirit of friendly competition with these tried-and-true classics. You’re sure to be feeling nostalgic by the end.
76. Simon Says
Here’s a popular game that works well as a birthday party activity for kids of all different ages with a few adjustments.
Choose one person to be the “Simon.” They give instructions starting with “Simon says,” and the other kids have to follow them. Leave it at that for tiny ones.
For those a little older you can add a competitive element. If Simon gives an instruction without saying “Simon says” first and a child still does it, they are out.
The last person remaining becomes the next Simon.
Here’s a classic that’ll hopefully wear the party goers out.
You’ll need a long strong rope – a tow rope for the car, this will work perfecftly. You’ll then need to mark it with a ribbon in the middle.
Divide the kids into two teams, ideally that are roughly evenly matched strength-wise. They must work together to pull the opposing team or the middle ribbon across a designated line within a certain time frame. A minute or two will probably be long enough.
The team that pulls the ribbon or the other team over the line first, wins.
78. Egg and Spoon Race
Give each child a spoon and an egg and have them race to the finish line without dropping the egg. The child who reaches the finish line first without dropping their egg wins.
Of course, you don’t have to use real eggs – a small ball like a ping pong ball or golf ball will work well. The latter will be easier since it’s heavier.
Or for an easier children’s birthday party activity try a tennis ball with a pastic cup.
79. Pin-the-Tail on the Donkey
A classic indoor birthday party idea to do at home that never gets old! Blindfold the kids and have them try to pin the tail on the donkey.
Of course, there are so many variations of this simple concept. Simply match it to your party theme. My daughter loved this pin-the-horn on the unicorn, she’ll probably choose this whatever her party theme!
78. Grandmother’s Footsteps
Grandmother’s Footsteps is a fun game best played outside. It’s fairly quiet to begin with but ends in loud excitement!
A parent needs to volunteer to be the “grandmother” and stand at one end of your yard or garden, with their back turned to the other players. The kids start at the other end and must creep towads the grandmother while she has her back turned.
As soon as the grandmother turns around, the players must freeze in their positions. If the grandmother catches any player moving, they must go back to the starting line. The goal is for a player to reach and tag the grandmother without getting caught moving.
Expect lots of shrieks of delight when the grandmother gets tagged!
79. Treasure Hunt With Clues
Create a treasure hunt with clues that lead the kids around your home and garden or backyard. At each location they’ll find a clue leading them to the next location.
The last clue can lead them to a treaure chest, containing treats or small toys for them to take home.
This is such a fun children’s birthday party activity that gets them thinking and moving! We’ve done this a few times – it’s great for a pirate themed party.
You can write your own clues or print off the free printable pictured from Homeschool Of 1
80. Obstacle Course
Create an obstacle course outside using cones, hula hoops, jump ropes and any play equipment you have. The kids can race each other through the course and wear themselves out at the same time.
You can add a competive element by grouping them into teams for a relay, if you can create 2 identical courses. Or time each child to see who can do it the quickest.
81. Sack Race
Have the kids race each other by hopping in old sacks or pillow cases. Great fun as an individual event or can be done in teams as a relay too.
82. Duck, duck, goose game
Make sure you’ve created space for this game if playing indoors. It’s a great chasing game for young energetic kids so it’s an ideal activity for a 4 year olds birthday party.
The kids sit in a circle and one is chosen as the picker. They walk tapping the other kid’s head and saying “duck”.
When they tap someone and say “goose” the person has to get up and chase the picker until they catch them. In the meantime, the picker tries to run away and sit where the goose was sitting. If they manage to do this the “goose” now becomes the picker.
Charades is a fun and engaging game that encourages creativity, communication, and teamwork. If you don’t know it, players must act out a word or phrase without speaking, while others from their team have to guess what it is.
You can either make up the words or phrases to guess yourself or use these free printable birthday charade ideas from Confessions Of Paraenting.
Most people know charades and you either love it or hate it! Most kids do seem to love it though. Charades is a classic party game where players act out a word or phrase without speaking, while others try to guess what it is. It’s a fun and engaging game that encourages creativity, communication, and teamwork.
Have the kids take turns trying to limbo under a stick that gets lower and lower. Crank up the music and have fun!
85. Sleeping lions
Here’s a simple children’s birthday party activity for younger kids that’ll hopefully bring the energy levels down, probably much needed at some point!
The kids must lie down and pretend to be sleeping, like lions. Then a parent or another child must walk around trying to make them giggle and laugh. If you make a sounds or move a muscle, you’re out!
Of course, as soon as one person starts giggling, it makes it even harder! Simple entertainment that little ones will love.
Birthday party activities with paid entertainment
Paid performers can be pricey but will take the pressure of you when it comes to organising and running kids birthday party activities. If life is busy and you can afford it, there’s no shame in paying a professional.
86. Magic Show
A classic that never loses it’s appeal with kids. Hire a professional magician to perform mind-boggling tricks, illusions, and interactive magic routines. The little party goers will be amazed and entertained. And so will some of the parents!
87. Puppet Show
Bring in a puppeteer who can captivate a younger audience with colorful characters, storytelling, and interactive puppetry. A delightful and engaging experience.
88. Balloon Twisting
Invite a balloon artist to create whimsical balloon sculptures and designs, ensuring each child receives a unique and personalized creation to take home.
89. Character Visit
Surprise the children with a visit from their beloved character, such as a princess, superhero, or cartoon character, who will interact, pose for photos, and engage in themed activities. You might even be able to persuade a family member or friend to do the duty!
This is sure to make the party truly memorable.
90. Circus School
My kids love going to the circus and always try to attempt some of the tricks afterwards. (And so far, they’re all still alive!)
So why not hire a circus performer that can give them a show and then teach them some skills, such as juggling, simple acrobatics, and tightrope walking.
91. Face Painting
Face painting is a popular children’s birthday party activity with little ones. Whenever we go somewhere where face painting’s on offer, you can be sure that my kids will want to get theirs done!
You can try this yourself but my attempts have been pretty feeble. So, getting a professional in to transform the kids into their favorite characters, animals, or superheroes is definitely the way to go. It’s sure to add a touch of color and excitement to any party.
Love kids free printables? We have lots here to enjoy:
- FREE 17 Page Christmas Activity Booklet Printable For Kids
- Simple FREE Printable 3D Paper Christmas Ornaments
- Santa Claus’s real mailing address + FREE Santa letter templates
- Cute Free Father’s Day Handprint Craft Templates INSTANT DOWNLOAD
- 7 FREE Christmas Light Scavenger Hunt Printable PDFs for Kids
Children’s birthday activity outings
Trips out can be a little bit easier to organise and manage, especially if you don’t have much room at home. Most places will accomodate kids and parties so look for party packages. These will take care of the food and other aspects too.
They may be pricey but offer a ton of convenience!
92. Trampoline Park
If you don’t have a trampoline at home, or even if you do, your kids will jump (obviously) at the chance to go to a trampoline park… Why not make this the main event of the day?
They’ll love to bounce, jump, and flip to their heart’s content with their friends.
93. Bowling Alley
Plan a trip to a bowling alley where the children can have a go at this fun game. They’ll love the excitement of knocking down pins and tallying up their scores.
Many bowling alleys have smaller balls and stands to help kids line up the ball and give them a chance of knocking something down.
Last year, my daughter went to a friends 6th birthday party at a bowling alley. I hadn’t realised it was possible at this age. She had a blast!
94. Miniature Golf
I loved miniature golf as a kid. (And probably would as an adult, but where’s the time?!)
Visiting a miniature golf course would definitely be a fun children’s birthday activity. They’ll love the fact that everything’s in miniature as much as the competition itself.
95. Ice Skating
Arrange a visit to an ice skating rink where the kids can glide across the ice and practise their skills. There are plenty that play music too and have special kids events.
Roller blading or skating would be a similarly fun activity for a kids birthday party.
96. Zoo or Animal Park
For little animal lovers, a trip to the local zoo or animal park would be a real treat. The kids can observe and learn about different animals, participate in guided tours or animal encounters. It’d be educational and interactive and, most importantly, fun.
97. Pottery Making
Book a session at an art studio where the kids can explore their creativity and get stuck in and have a go at making some pottery. You could also do pottery painting, where you pick out a bowl or cup that’s already been fired and paint it.
98. Science Museum
If your child has an inquisitive nature and loves to learn, why not plan a trip to a science museum with his or her friends. Most have plenty of in interactive exhibits and educational demonstrations. This will foster their curiosity and love for science.
99. Water Park
If your planning a summer birthday party, why not organize a trip to a water park. The kids can splash, slide, and cool off in a variety of water attractions. It’ll be a day of thrilling aquatic adventures.
Ready to start prepping your kids birthday party?
Whether you’re hosting everyone inside or aiming for an outdoor party, you should now be spoilt for choice after this bumper list of fun party games and activities for kids.
On to the next stage of your party planning. Good luck! And have a fab day.