Games at birthday party for 4-year-old?? - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 17 Old 07-22-2009, 08:48 AM - Thread Starter
 
wagamama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Canadian in Japan
Posts: 675
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Are we asking for trouble? My four-year-old DS wants to have games at his party, like musical chairs, an egg and spoon race, an obstacle course, etc. I'm a little worried about the competitive aspect upsetting some kids, as well as the logistics involved in rounding the kids up to play a particular game.

Does anyone have any experiences/tips/warnings to share? TIA!

Globetrotting mama to DS (9) and DD (6)
wagamama is offline  
#2 of 17 Old 07-22-2009, 09:07 AM
 
Suzmama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 226
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My girls are teens now but we still fondly remember the games we used to play when they were that age...

Cooperative musical chairs, all children have to be on the chairs, as each chair is removed they have to help each other be on the remaining ones until at the end they are all on (or in contact with) the final chair...they all win!

We also loved a game where the birthday child hides, and the rest look for her...as each child finds her, they hide with her until the whole group is hiding together, and the last person (usually Dad) finds them all, and they all win.

Oh and there is a chasing game where the whole group lines up and holds on to the back of the child in front of them...the child in the back has a bright cloth tucked into the back of them and the child in front has to chase and retrieve the cloth with all of the children still connected.

Then there is the famous parachute...lots of games you can do with those.

So fun!

Susan hippie.gif Mama to DD (15) guitar.gif : DD (18) geek.gif & cat.gif
goorganic.jpg Rainbow.gifjoy.giftreehugger.gif winner.jpg coolshine.gifribbongrey.gif
Suzmama is offline  
#3 of 17 Old 07-22-2009, 09:34 AM - Thread Starter
 
wagamama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Canadian in Japan
Posts: 675
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Those are lovely ideas. Thank you!

Globetrotting mama to DS (9) and DD (6)
wagamama is offline  
#4 of 17 Old 07-22-2009, 10:06 AM
 
OboePlayerMom's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 103
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
4 is a great age for games! You can set things up so there's some free playtime (because they really love seeing someone else's toys!) and then have them all gather in a circle for game time. Hot Potato is another fun one, and you can give out stickers to the child who has the "potato" when the music stops. No one has to be out in that game, and I love the PP's version of musical chairs. For my son's bday party when he turned 4, we had a race car theme, so we also had some race tracks set up around the house for different race games.

Leslie, Mommy to DS(8) and DD(almost 6) :

OboePlayerMom is offline  
#5 of 17 Old 07-22-2009, 10:27 AM
 
SandraS's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Ohio
Posts: 1,958
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
We have a family tradition of a pinata starting at the age of 4, too... that goes all the way to about 10, when it's "not cool" anymore!

SANDRA, 41 year old VERY laid-back mama to VERY free range kids Brett (16), Justus (11), Autumn (4), and Ayla (1)... four perfect NCB's! :::
SandraS is offline  
#6 of 17 Old 07-22-2009, 03:17 PM
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 3,305
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
How many kids are you having? My experience with kids that age is if it's a group of over 6 or so, the intended games go ignored. Small (quick) craft activities, like a mask or something, and a pinata seem to hold their attention.

But, of course, all groups of kids are different.
Hoopin' Mama is offline  
#7 of 17 Old 07-22-2009, 03:58 PM
 
Storm Bride's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 27,300
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by OboePlayerMom View Post
Hot Potato is another fun one, and you can give out stickers to the child who has the "potato" when the music stops. No one has to be out in that game...
My SIL does this with a wrapped toy. It's wrapped in multiple layers of paper, and she makes sure that each kid gets to take off one layer...and there's a treat/toy in each layer. She doesn't do loot bags, and each child takes home whatever they got.

One year, she put a three pack of juggling balls at the center, and let ds1 (a pretty good juggler) do the last unwrap. Then, she got him to entertain the other kids with some juggling. It worked out well. I'd actually start doing it, too, but I'm already known for loot bags (sadly) and I don't want any friction from "stealing" her idea. (My SIL and I don't have a smooth relationship - not even a little bit.)

Lisa, lucky mama of Kelly (3/93) ribboncesarean.gif, Emma (5/03) ribboncesarean.gif, Evan (7/05) ribboncesarean.gif, & Jenna (6/09) ribboncesarean.gif
Loving my amazing dh, James & forever missing ribbonpb.gif Aaron Ambrose ribboncesarean.gif (11/07) ribbonpb.gif

Storm Bride is offline  
#8 of 17 Old 07-22-2009, 04:12 PM
 
mazajo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Cincinnati
Posts: 772
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
How about pin the tail on the donkey, or some version of that- pin the nose on the clown, the hat on the man, or whatever fits your theme. Use tape instead of pins, and focus on the funny places the tails end up rather than having a winner.

ETA- Oh, and what about a parade? That's always a favorite with that age group and the more kids the better. The kids could make their own instruments by decorating a couple paper plates and taping them together with dried beans or something in the middle, or they could make flags to wave.

A simple scavenger hunt could be fun too!

I love the hiding the bday child idea! I'll have to remember that one.
mazajo is offline  
#9 of 17 Old 07-22-2009, 04:51 PM - Thread Starter
 
wagamama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Canadian in Japan
Posts: 675
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoopin' Mama View Post
How many kids are you having? My experience with kids that age is if it's a group of over 6 or so, the intended games go ignored. Small (quick) craft activities, like a mask or something, and a pinata seem to hold their attention.

But, of course, all groups of kids are different.
This is my worry. There will be 8 kids. Does anyone have tips on how to get the kids involved in the games?

Globetrotting mama to DS (9) and DD (6)
wagamama is offline  
#10 of 17 Old 07-22-2009, 04:56 PM
 
MtBikeLover's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Chicago Burbs
Posts: 1,644
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Hot potato is always a favorite at our parties. The person that has to go out gets something fun to play with. For the pirate party we did for my son's 5th, as they got out, they got to walk the plank and get a hook. Everyone wanted to get out so nobody was upset about "losing" because they all felt like winners.

We've also done versions of pin the tail on the donkey and let them decide if they want to be blindfolded or not.

Another fun game has been to pop the balloons. We blow up a lot of balloons and throw them out to be popped.

Other games like freeze dance and limbo stick have been hits as well.
MtBikeLover is offline  
#11 of 17 Old 07-22-2009, 04:58 PM
 
MtBikeLover's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Chicago Burbs
Posts: 1,644
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by wagamama View Post
This is my worry. There will be 8 kids. Does anyone have tips on how to get the kids involved in the games?
We always have 15-20 kids and don't usually have trouble getting the kids involved. I make sure to have free play time in between the games and then make the games sound really fun. I call everyone into a circle and use a fun voice and they have always played along.
MtBikeLover is offline  
#12 of 17 Old 07-23-2009, 04:51 PM - Thread Starter
 
wagamama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Canadian in Japan
Posts: 675
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Thanks everyone. Will report back on how it goes!

Globetrotting mama to DS (9) and DD (6)
wagamama is offline  
#13 of 17 Old 07-23-2009, 10:16 PM
 
alexsam's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 3,276
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My 4 yr old just went to a party with lots of games... He did fine while he was there, but he had a giant melt-down after because of all the tension from the competativeness.

I just bought (but haven't recieved yet) this book on cooperative games: http://www.funagain.com/control/prod...duct_id=012751, but I bet you could find some books on cooperative games at your library too.

They didn't seem to have trouble rounding the kids up- they wanted to play. And whoever didn't just played by themselves. But for DS, the "winning" stuff really tweaked him out. But I bet with some thought and resources, you could find some really fun "no looser" things to do!
alexsam is offline  
#14 of 17 Old 07-24-2009, 05:16 PM
 
karemore's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Hudson Valley NY
Posts: 739
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
The only party for 4 year olds that we went to with games almost every child was miserable until the games were over and they could have free play.

None of the other parents had games because of this, or because we all just knew our 4 year old doesn't like to "lose".

We did a pin the tail type game at DDs party and that was a hit because it wasn't really competive.

In my experience 4 year olds want to run around and play, and they want to eat. They don't want organized activities at parties. There are plenty of years ahead for games.
karemore is offline  
#15 of 17 Old 07-25-2009, 01:08 AM
 
Smocked's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 252
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
for my dd's 4th birthday I planned a bean bag toss game and pin the tail on the donkey. Neither game ended with prizes so they weren't competitive at all (disappointing to the lone 6 year old) and it was totally fine if they didn't want to play.

To get the bean bag toss game started I just had one kids start to see if he could get it in the hole and he tried a few times and then another little guy stepped in and wanted to try...it pretty much just got started from there. Once some of the kids looked like they were done and bored with the bean bag game I went straight into the donkey game.

Having the games set up ahead of time helps and also if you see the game isn't going over well, just let it go and find something else for the kids to do!
Smocked is offline  
#16 of 17 Old 07-26-2009, 09:42 AM
 
Softmama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,035
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
We end our parties with a treasure hunt and the treasure at the end is a blanket marked with an X thrown over all their treat bags. It's a good group game where everyone gets to win.

pass the parcel is also great. Someone already described this. You wrap up toys in layers, so whoever has the parcel when the music stops unwraps one layer, gets their toy, and steps out of the circle and the rest continue until there is just one kid left (and he gets to unwrap the last layer and keep the last toy).
Softmama is offline  
#17 of 17 Old 07-15-2012, 07:31 AM
 
Justice20's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 1
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

For games that aren't competitive, try the games like treasure hunts with little toys everybody can get. And maybe water balloon toss, or a bean bag race where they can all win at the end.Welcome.gif

Justice20 is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off