If your child’s birthday party is coming up, even if you have some entertainment and food organised, it’s still worth have a few party games planned as well. Here are a few classics that have been played at parties for generations.
Pin the Tail on the Donkey
Simply pin up on the wall or a board a large picture of an animal without its tail (traditionally it’s a donkey but it could be a pig, dog or elephant). Each child takes a turn to be blindfolded and pin the tail to the place they think it should be. The child that gets the tail closest to the animal’s bottom wins. For some reason, seeing the tail mistakenly attached to the animal’s leg, or eye, or the tree, is reliably hilarious. Take care with drawing pins and don’t forget a prize at the end.
Pass the Parcel
A classic of course. Wrap up a gift in many layers of paper, the children sit around in a circle and pass the present around and whoever is holding it when the music stops unwraps a layer. Then the music and passing continues. Often there is a sweet inside each layer, to make the unwrapping almost as much fun as being the one to get the present at the end. Some parents manage this game carefully, ensuring the music stops in time for every child to unwrap a layer each, but others leave it up to chance and take the chance that some kids will feel a bit disappointed because they haven’t had a turn.
Musical Bumps, Chairs or Cushions
Musical Bumps is really fun and can get crazily competitive. Clear a large space, turn on some child-friendly music and let the kids dance about. When the music stops, the players have to sit down and the last one standing is OUT. The alternative version is Musical Chairs or Musical Cushions – make sure there is one less chair or cushion than the number of children, and they have to rush to sit down when the music stops. It is easier to spot the loser in these two alternative versions, because they are the only one without a chair or a cushion after all the scrambling for a seat is over. The winner is the last dancer left at the end – they should be given a prize for all their efforts.