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Help needed for 3 yr old birthday party

15 replies

Wills · 02/03/2003 11:09

Hi, My dd's party is next weekend and although I'm not sure her age group is ready for structured games nevertheless I'd like to have a go at some. I've already got pass the parcel presents but does anyone else have any ideas. I suspect they're too young for games such as musical bumps etc. Any suggestions on what to do or even what to avoid?

OP posts:

breeze · 02/03/2003 12:14

Are most of the parents staying, if so then they can help the children play the games. Musical chairs, when the music stops sit down. pin the tail on the donkey, hot and cold. have fun


Wills · 02/03/2003 12:58

Yes they are staying. A lot of them are coming from her nursery so I'm doubly nervous etc. I am looking forward to this but am at the same time apprehensive.

OP posts:

Twink · 02/03/2003 16:22

We were at a 3 y.o. party recently where they did musical bumps, all the kids were a bit bemused to start with but some got the idea quite quickly. Those that didn't just wandered off and played with toys.
Musical chairs worked ok at another one, although there were a few slightly older children there.

What about one of those Mexican (?) things that hang up and children either hit it with a stick (or pull ribbons) until presents fall out. Sorry for the dreadful description, can't remember the proper name.


batey · 02/03/2003 16:34

Wills, IME 3yr olds should be able to manage musical bumps and statues. As a warm up game we often do "find the ..." i.e. hide something like fridge magnet letters around the house/garden, give them a little bowl or yoghurt pot and ask them to find as many as they can. Then come back to you for a prize/sweetie. You can change the things you hide/give them an amount of letters to find for older kids. It's good at getting them milling around and warms up the shy ones.

Sleeping lions is a good one after they've eaten as it makes them lie down "quietly" for a while!

For 3yr olds Hat Making is fun. Have long pieces of card ready, lots of stickers/pens/decorations and they can design their own hats to take home/wear for tea.

No time left now, screaming dds.........HTH.


happydays · 02/03/2003 21:23

complete block, can someone tell me what musical bumps are please.


Twink · 02/03/2003 21:41

Music plays, children run/dance/move, it then stops and all children sit down asap, last to sit is 'out' continues until there is one child left.


happydays · 03/03/2003 08:09

Thanks Twink


deegward · 03/03/2003 15:48

My ds's 3rd bday party is on Sunday, and as I am 8.5 mth pg we have organised a magician to entertain the little darlings (all 30 of them!!). I only say this as my ds went to a party in Nov and the same entertainer was there, and he did musical statues (which we have played at regular intervals since), dancing competition,and pass the parcel. I think in today's society it is so nice to see children actually being allowed to be children and play the games we all did in our youth. Wills, good luck for the party.... what are you doing about food?

I had kinda thought, sandwich, cooked sausage, fairy cake and crisps. Any thoughts?


Katherine · 03/03/2003 16:00

DD (3 in 2 weeks) had a go at musical bumps not long ago and althogh she didn't really master it she had great fun dancing. We've reacently developed a game where I should different things and they have to pretend to be something. No really a game as such but she loves it and some of her pretending is excellent. At Ds's 3rd I got cheap T-shirts for them all and a pack of fabric pens and they all coloured in a t-shirt. Hide and Seek is also popluar at the moment.


pingu2 · 03/03/2003 18:15

Deegward- dont forget the chocolate rice crispie cakes! dd party yesterday- favorite savoury was chicken nuggets and hula hoops. most popular sweet item- chocolate finger biscuits. I did make lots of healthy home made stuff but neednt have bothered! (knew that beforehand but couldnt help myself!)


KMG · 03/03/2003 19:14

Trad party games can work with this age group, but you do need to bear in mind that it might be completely unfamiliar territory to most if not all of them. So explain the rules of the game very slowly and carefully to them - don't just expect them to catch on. And keep it very simple.

We also play 'copy cat' - a bit like Simon Says, you say things for them to do and they copy, then you suddenly shout 'copy cat', and they have to sit down with arms and legs crossed ... I know it sounds really boring, but it goes down very well with children this age, IME!

Don't try for elimination games, or even winners -not necessary for this age. And keep the numbers down too.

What space do you have? We borrowed a parachute for a party, and played parachute games, which went down well. Though that was a 4th, and the children had all played parachute games at nursery, so knew what to do.

Hope it goes well.

Oooh - PS - DIY food goes down very well too. Give them biscuits or cakes to decorate. We did desserts too - with jelly, ice-cream, cream, lots of different fruit, plus sauce, sprinkles, choc chips, etc. Not really a game, but very popular.

Can't seem to stop. Really basic sing-song/dance stuff - Ring-a-ring-a-roses, The grand old duke of York, Row row row your boat, Here we go round the mulberry bush ... went down well for us.


Wills · 03/03/2003 22:11

thanks to everyone - ideas are starting to flow.

I'm very proud of myself at the moment. I hate the colour pink and anything to do with barbie. So naturally my daughter adores the colour pink and loves all things barbie (suspect my mother is behind this somehow). I've just returned from Tescos where I put all the barbie plates/cups etc back at least 4 times before finally buying it. I don't know why I have such a strong aversion but I will be cringing terribly once the hall is decorated!

I'm starting to get plans together and really like the idea of the copycat game (thanks KMG). My mother has suggested Dead Lions but I remain to be convinced that a room full of 3 years will persauded to lie still long enough for me to spot a winner (unless of course one of them falls asleep). Like the idea of the parachute, but I'm not sure where I'd find one.

I like the idea of the T shirts but as I've over 40 children of different ages (only 23 were invited but I've found it difficult to refuse siblings) the T shirts would have to be incredibly cheap. My mother's already made loads of cakes so I'll get her to leave them undecorated and the children can do those.

I also love the idea of them creating their own hats but where I've got to find a supply of carboard first.

Thanks for all the input - and please don't let that stop more coming.

Ohh - just previewed this and I like saying "I like"!

Also KMG - point noted on individual's winning games, will have to think how to ensure all are winners.

OP posts:

titchy · 04/03/2003 10:11

Do you have any rugs you can spare? One of dd's friends had a 3rd party a couple of years ago and they had bought half a dozen little rugs which the children had to jump on when the music stopped (obviuosly dancing around said rugs whilst music was playing - sorry - ommitted this bit!). After each go you take a rug away so they're all trying to jump on the same one at the end - they loved it! Fairly easy for three year old to grasp as well.


Wills · 04/03/2003 11:31

Titchy - love the idea since I'm basically a rough and tumble sort of parent with a similar style dd. However I have noticed that some of her friends are a little more gentle and I can imagine that with them all piling on to one mat that someone is going to end up with a bruise yes/no?

OP posts:

titchy · 04/03/2003 13:08

It's always a possibility Wills, but you could make sure that the last rug left is a large one, but you may well find that the more reserved children will probably not even try to get onto it. You could do a variation where they each have a piece of paper to jump on, and remove the papers piece by piece, but I don't know if you want a winners and losers, sorry runners-up, type game. Probably no chances of bruises or broken bones though!

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