Hi, I need some ideas for games for a 5 year old's birthday party.
GAME PLAN: If you are planning a party and want to keep the kids busy so the party goes smoothly and doesn't turn into a wild free-for-all, try this. Begin with a quiet game, then play an active game or two, then calm the group down again with a last quiet game. Here are suggestions for both.
"Switch" - Begin with a quiet game like Switch. Divide the kids into two teams and take Team A into another room. Team A must switch various items of clothing or accessories with one another, then return to the game room. Team B must try to guess all the switches that have been made within a five-minute time period. Add up how many items Team B guessed correctly. Then let Team B have a turn to "switch" and let Team A guess the switches. The team with the most correct answers in the allotted time period wins a prize.
"Mummy Wrap" - Divide the kids into pairs, with one the Mummy and the other the Mummy Wrapper. Give each wrapper a roll of toilet paper or crepe paper streamer. On the word "Go!" have the wrappers race to see who can wrap up their mummy first. The game is tricky because the faster they try to wrap, the more the tissue will tear, causing them to keep restarting!
"Price Is Right" - Here's a great wind-down game that also serves as the going-away favor. Buy inexpensive gifts for your guests, such as a big bag of candy, a small stuffed animal, a scary book, and so on. Distribute paper and pencil to each player. Hold up one item and have the kids try to guess how much it cost. Reveal the price tag and award the gift to the player who guessed the closest. That player is out of the game, while the rest continue guessing the prices of the gifts, until all of them are gone.
"Strip the Present"- Have the children sit in a circle. Wrap a present several times, and send it around the circle. As it goes from person to person, have each child unwrap one layer of paper (You can also wrap the gift with tin foil, plastic bags, etc. to make it different). The child who unwraps the last layer to discover what the present is gets to keep it.
"Musical Present"- Gather the kids in a circle and give one of the children a wrapped present. Play music and have them pass the present around the circle. When the music stops, the child holding the present gets to keep it, and then drop out of the game. Start another present around the circle.
"Duck Duck Goose"- This is an old favorite! Gather the kids in a circle, and choose one child (usually the birthday boy/girl) to be the "ducker". The "ducker" gets to walk around the circle, tapping (not hitting!) each child on the head, electing to say "duck", or "goose". If the "ducker" says, "duck", then nothing happens. But if the "ducker" yells, "Goose!" then the "goosed" child gets up and runs around in an effort to tag the "ducker". If the child cannot catch the "ducker", then that child becomes the "ducker". If the "ducker" is caught, then he/she has to sit in the "soup" (the middle of the circle) until another "ducker" is caught.
"Balloon Bounce"- Have a contest to see who can keep the balloon in the air the longest using only their head. The person who can keep it in the air longest without using anything but their head is the winner. (This game can also be played in teams).
"Musical Chairs"- This is another children's favorite. Set up chairs in 2 rows back to back. Put out one less chair than there are children. Start playing music, and have the kids walk around the chairs (not touching the chairs though!) until the music stops. When the music stops, the kids must each sit on a chair. The child without a chair is "out". Then remove another chair. If there is ever a tie, the child with more tush on the chair wins. This is a great game when it is played with hats too! Pull out every winter, baseball, cowboy, etc. hat in your house. Have enough hats for every kid except one. As the music starts, have each kid put the hat on and pass it to the right. Each time the music stops, the kid without a hat is out.
"Freeze Dance"- This game does not need much explanation. Put a group of kids in a room, play some music, and watch them dance. Then turn the music off during the song, and they must freeze in their current position. If they move at all, then they are "out". The people who are still in the game continue to dance/freeze as you control the music, until one person wins.
"Hot Potato"- This game is an old favorite. Have all of the kids sit in a circle, as one kid is chosen as the "leader". Begin passing a potato (or other object) around the circle, while the "leader" turns his/her head with eyes closed. Everyone must accept the potato, and may not hold it longer than a second. At any point the "leader" can yell, "Hot Potato", and whoever has the potato is out. Continue to play until there is only one person left, and he/she is the winner.
"Feather Blow"- Give each of the kids a feather. When you say, "GO!" the kids have to start blowing the feather in the air. Whoever can keep the feather in the air the longest (using only his/her breath) is the winner. This game can also be played in teams (the team to keep the feather in the air longest using only breath wins)
"Name That Animal"- This is a fun game for small children just beginning to learn their animals. Pass out animal stickers or small stuffed animals, and have the kids imitate the animal they receive.
"Dress-up Relay"- Make 2 piles of the same type of clothing. Divide the group into teams and have the first players race to dress up in all the clothes from one pile. When finished, he/she must take all the clothes off and have the next player dress up. The team that dresses and undresses first wins the game.
"Sense-Sational"- Test their powers of smell! Fill paper bags with a variety of items that have an aroma, such as coffee beans, salami, toothpaste, orange peels, chocolate, and so on. Be sure the smells are familiar to the age group. Then pass the bags around and let the kids smell them without looking inside! Give prizes to whoever guessed them all correctly (or whoever guessed the most correctly).
"Telephone"- Have the kids sit in a circle on the floor. The first player begins by whispering a phrase into the ear of the person next to him/her. One by one, each person repeats the whispered sentence as they hear it when it is whispered to them. When the last person receives the message, he/she repeats it out loud. It is usually completely different than the original statement. This game can also be played with goofy faces. The first person makes a goofy face, and then turns (with the goofy look on his/her face) to the next person. The goofy look is passed on until the last person and the first person compare goofy faces.
"Good Guess"- Find a variety of items that your guests can guess "How much..." For example, "How many jellybeans in a jar," "How many words on a page in a book," "How many crackers in a bag of oyster crackers," "How many pages in a magazine". Award a prize to the person who has the closest guess for each item.
"Human String Relay"- First of all, you need to tie a spoon to the end of a ball of yarn. Line up both teams single-file. When the host/hostess says,
"Go," the first person from each team must put the spoon down his shirt, as well as his pants. When it comes out of his pant leg, he must then pass it to the next player (As it is still attached to the first player). When it has gone through the entire line, and everyone is attached, then the last person at the end of the line must reverse the process (While the first person winds the string into a ball as it comes back out of each person's clothing). When the team finishes unwinding the string then the first person in that line needs to shout, "Done!" The team to finish unwinding the string first wins. (01/25/2005)
Lovely games, thanks! Very helpful! (07/16/2006)
By Iljoesja Lowinsky
How about "Hot Potato"? Play music and pass the potato in a circle, while the children sit in a circle. When the music stops who ever has the potato is out of the circle. Do this until two children are left. The last one not to have the potato wins! Pinatas are also great for 5 year olds. (07/24/2006)
A game that I think a 4 year old would like is either "Hot Potato", or "Mummy Wrap". Maybe even musical chairs. You can also try playing games like "Tag", "Hide and Seek", or a game I invented called "Jail". For "Jail" one person is it. There is a base where all the other children sit. The person who is it counts to 10 and every one else runs. The person who is it tries to tag as many people as she or he can and puts them in jail. The last person is the winner and gets to be it. (06/25/2007)
Don't forget about the Hokey Pokey and the Chicken Dance. And maybe even the limbo. Just make sure the parent of the birthday child participates. This just makes the kids more apt to participate as well as helps teach the kids how to do the dances if they don't quite know how.
Also, A balloon race. I use the water balloons and blow them up tight, so they will pop easily for the little ones in the 2nd game. I have 2 or 3 balloons per person depending on how long you need the races to last.
1st game- have two teams and two laundry baskets set up at opposite ends of the room. Divide blown up balloons evenly amongst the teams. I put them in a kitchen size trash bag and make the kids take them out when it is their turn. Then have them race down to the laundry basket and put their balloon in. And race back to their team. When that person gets back, the next one goes. The person can't come back until their balloon is IN the basket and stays in. Whichever team empties their trash bag first wins.
2nd game- Now each team (same teams) has to start next to their laundry basket. Each child takes a balloon, runs to the opposite end of the room (where their team originally was in the 1st game) and tries to sit on the balloon until it is popped. (Again, for little ones, make sure it is blown up tight so it will pop easily, for older kids, a little less air, more work to pop.) Anyway, that kid goes back to the team and the next person grabs the balloon to pop at the other end of the room. Continue until all balloons are popped. The team done first wins.
Now have all the kids pick up balloon pieces and place in trash bags you already have out. Mess all cleaned up! (09/06/2007)
We are always looking for new and exciting games. But don't forget the classics; "Hide and Seek", "Ring Around the Rosy", "Tag", "Musical Chairs". Remember the games you grew up on, and pass the memories on to your kids! (05/23/2008)
I'm organizing a party for 5 year-olds. Here are a few party ideas:
The classic "Pin the Tail on the Donkey", is always a good one, but it doesn't necessarily have to be a donkey. For example, the party I am planning has a pirate theme, and I have made a big pirate face, where the kids have to stick on the pirates eye patch. We call it "Pin the Eye Patch on the Pirate".
I'm surprised no one has suggested a treasure hunt, as I have never met a child who didn't enjoy searching for a gold coin in the garden! Hide 1 coin outside (or inside if it's raining) for each child, and tell them that once they've found one, they leave the search and let the others find theirs. This game can last up to ten minutes, depending on how difficult your hiding places are.
"Ping-Pong Puff", this is a good one to get them laughing. Have all the kids line up at one end of the room, with their hands behind their back, a straw in their mouth and a ping pong ball in front of them. Their goal is to blow the ping pong ball using only their straw, and no hands, to the other end of the room. The winner could get a prize. And make sure that you get photos of them red in the face from all of that blowing!
"Balloon Stomp". Tie a blown up balloon to each child's leg, and get them all to stand in a big room, when you say "go", they all have to run around and try to pop each others balloons, without getting theirs popped themselves. Once a child's balloon is popped, they are out of the game, and the last child remaining with their balloon un-popped is the winner.
Another good one is the egg and spoon race. The children line up and all have a spoon with a boiled egg in it. On "go" the children have to race to the other end of the garden and back, and if they drop their egg, they have to start again. Make sure this game is played outside! Because boiled eggs all through the house makes a tough job to clean.
"Eat the fish off the line". Buy enough chocolate fish so that there is one for each child. Tie a piece of string through each fish and hang them all off a washing line or rope, so that they are dangling around each child's head-height. On "go", each child races to finish their chocolate fish first, but there is a twist, they can only use their mouths! This is also a good game to photograph, and the winner doesn't have to get a prize, because they got a chocolate fish.
Other good games, some have have already been suggested:
-Pass the parcel
-Duck duck goose
Many thanks. I found some games I had never heard of before. (01/29/2009)
By Jo K.
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