I got this idea from an ebook on Fall Carnivals I found at www.volunteerspot.com/ebooks. The kids loved it.
Toy Swap "bring a toy and drop it off upon entering the carnival" get one swap ticket for each toy brought. Collect toys up until a certain point in the carnival day. At a designated time, open the toy swap to everyone who's brought something. This is a great fall carnival game for these tough times, when lots of people have things to give, but not much money.
One of our teachers make up this game and the kids love it! It's a donut eating contest.
Use two ladders or something tall on both sides and have a string between the two, kind of looks like a clothes line. You tie a string around a plain donut (or whatever kind you like) and hang the string to the "line" above. The kids all stand in a line below their string (with donut hanging from it) and when you say GO they all try and eat the donut off the string with their hands behind their back. The first one to eat the donut before it falls to the ground wins! You can give them a small prize or something for winning. The kids LOVE it.
Our church also does many of the "carnival" type games for indoor, focusing on younger kids, like the ones mentioned, but our community ed program does "Spooky Forrest" And has a lighted walking path full of different surprises - one path for little ones and one side for the "Brave". Some of my 4 year old's favorite things there is the hayride that takes you out to the paths and the glow sticks they have!
A huge hit at our church last year was with water guns. A Cross and a Heart were each carved on a pumkpin (could not have a jack o lantern face at church). Small tea lights were inside and the goal was to shoot out the candle. We had races and well as just doing in on your own. It was requested for this year, by adults and kids.
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The following is a fun and inexpensive game. This is a game that is a success for children and adults. It is a dress up race. The object of the game is to see whom gets dressed up first. Fill up two bags with clothing and accessories like; a hat, a pair of gloves, long sleeve button down shirt, spandex or draw string shorts, footsies (hospital scrubs), sunglasses etc, all found in your home. Make sure that both bags have the same amount and the same articles in each bag. They do not have to be the exact color or pattern but size should be the same. I use my husband’s shirt and my older sons shorts that allows all ages to play. One-size stretch gloves and any cap or hat. The craziest colors or articles the funnier. Use your own discretion in what articles to put in the bag. Pick two people to play, explain to them the rules of the game. Don't give them the bags before this will make them anxious. You then count one, two, three, throw them the bags and the race begins. The first one to finish buttoning the shirt and putting on all the articles on IS THE WINNER. The order they dress up does not matter. Hope you have lots of fun.
My children's Montessori School has a Fall Festival each year for children from toddlers through age 12 or so. The parents of each of our twelve classes are responsible for organizing, funding, and manning the activity or "booth" during the fair. Many classes repeat the same activity year after year because the children love seeing them. They remember how much they enjoyed it the previous year. I say this because, if you do take on this task again next year, you do not need to come up with all new ideas.
The booths that I can remember from previous years are:
Toddlers: Bubble blowing-gather different types of wands, large and small and lots of bubble mix and let the fun begin. Another big hit or the youngest children is to ask parents to bring some of their childrens toddler toys, like blocks (the big cardboard ones are great for this) shape sorters, ball pounders, simple wooden puzzles and just sperad them out on some blankets. Parents should be sure to mark their items on the bottom to ensure their safe return.
For slightly older children:
One class asked parents to bring in rhythm instruments from home for children to explore. Families brought all different types of drum, and maracas, and triangles, and bells. This is a big hit with all ages, especially Dads. Again, instruments should be labeled.
This year one class is planting seeds in little soil filled cups. Another class is having children decorate their own reusable bags to promote reduce/reuse/recycling.
Another class has face painting, an oldie, but a goodie. And another has bean bag toss, another great one.
Our older classes run two moonwalks, which the parents chip in to rent for the afternoon.
Hope this helps!
Someone mentioned a pumpkin bean bag toss above. Here's a similar idea.
Have someone (or yourself) cut a large turkey shape from plywood. Paint to look like a turkey, with bright colors, especially on the feathers. Use extra plywood to build a simple support, attach to the back.
Have smaller holes cut in the end of the feathers, in the hat, and a couple in tummy area. Have the kids throw bean bags through the holes to earn points.
Prizes/trinkets can be sorted from high to low, and awarded, depending on the points won.
This game can be made/saved to use year after year.
Go to a local Lowes, or home depot and get scrap wood. Have them cut a variety of sizes kids can hold in there hand. Buy orange, white, yellow paint from a teachers store or Michael's, something that will wash up. get old sponges and rags attach them to a clothes pin. Have the kids paint a pumpkin. they have something to take home. Give a ribbon for most original, cutest, most colorful etc. Make sure to get old button down shirts and put them backwards on the kids to avoid a mess.
Have a scare crow making contest. gather everything needed put in large garbage bags. according to ages have team see who can put a scarecrow together the fastest.
Collect leaves, acorns, sunflower seeds, fall flowers etc. give each kid a paperplate or foam meat tray have them design a fall scene or centerpiece.
Decorate baby gourds
Have a hay ride or a corn maze
I was a church minister at one time for family life and hosted a Halloween like festival. I have to tell you, one of the most popular events was a Nerf challenge! I bought two harmless nerf guns and every kid in the place wanted a chance to challenge the best nerf shot. Two kids had to sit in a rolling office chair and the first one to shoot the other was the winner of that challenge. This was some years back when every kid played innocently with their six shooters.
The best cowboy or cowgirl won a great prize and bragging rights. Believe me, every kid there is going to want to play this LIVE gaming situation. Now they even sell the set with a battery operated target that goes off when hit. Which ever way you do it, they love to challenge each other. Lots of fun!
my 4yr grandsons school had a carnival the other day at his preschool and the events were for pre up to like 4 th grade. maybe these game ideas idea they had will help.
* they had like 6 plastic sticks in the ground side 2 side in sets of 2 each lined up beside each other in vertical lines each one had a flag paper taped to it with a number for points like 5/10/15/20 etc and then each child got to throw 3 hoops onto the sticks seeing which points the could ring.
* teams of 2 kids tossed back and forth tiny cheap thin ballons filled with very little water back and forth to eachother, as long as no balloon busted they remain in the game but if one busted then that team loooses.
* bean bag toss" they had frames about 16X20 and had about 6 holes in it the size of an orange each hole had points and they tossed tiny bean bags inside. they each got 3 bags to try
* game called green light red light( the kids line up horizontally and an adult is the light with his hand held up and when he says green the kids continue to go at a fast pace walk when he says red they are to stop, the first person the Hi-% his hand is the winner to the light.
* duck duck goose (i'm sure you know that one)
* also sack races (they just took white old pillow cases and decorated with markers USE YOUR FALL THEME and draw on leaves pumpkins etc. Have about 4-6 kids race at the call of GO! First person across the paper streamer line wins!
They did this in groups of ages and each event was spaced out so far apart. When all events were done each child got a little gift toy approipriate to there age wheter they won or not.
** And face painting is always a big hit too! Just sit up 2 chairs facing eachother for the painter and the reciever use simple non toxic acyrlic paints (in walmart 44cent each) just put out a little dollip of each color into an empty egg carton and add a dot of water to each use a simple liner brush (walnart pack is $1 or less) print you off like 6-8 basic shapes from your art program or get from a coloring book things like butterfly, lady bug, pumpkin, leaf, smilie face etc. and keep that paper near you so you look at it and then draw it onto there upper cheek and then just fill in the color. Let them pick which design they want.
*** fish pond > in a corner some where hang up an old sheet behind it put a shallow box of little toys that hang well and are light in weight. Adult sits back there and the kids on the front side with a long slim wooden dowel rod (walmart 60 cent) tie a string to it and when they hang it over give it a tug then use a clothes pin to attach the toy say you got something then tug it so they can bring it back over
***candy walk> just like musical chairs but you start with about 6 chairs 7 people each time the person left standing is out remove a chair until your are down to 1 chair 2 people the person left sitting wins something big like a cupcake or toy the others get a small treat or just do it for fun no give outs. You can make your own ribbon to for this game 1st place 2bd place 3rd place by making them from contruction paper. The last 3 down to one get ribbons the last one sitting gets the blue ribbon
You can have you hubby or someone make a big pumpkin out of wood paint it cut the eyes and nose and mouth out and buy lil mini pumpkins. Number them with a black magic marker and that would be the number points do lil prizes or trinkets for a certain score bob for apples. Do pumpkin cookie decorating have frosting and colored black and orange sprinkles mand ms and such. Make foam pic frames dollar stores have foam and the lil sticky Halloween themed ones to stick on!
Fill jars with candy corns. Do a guessing game paint pumpkins - lil mini ones are so cheap, sometimes like 5 for a buck or if you have a large group event you might get a better price! Make black and orange beaded bracelets or necklaces.
I could go on and on. I teach preschool so I always have ideas!
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