Counting, Searching and Finding Games
By Alecia Dixon and Grace Sylvan
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Go on a Treasure Hunt
These are some treasure hunt ideas: You can scatter real coins, plastic coins or candy coins in the lawn and let the kids hunt for them, much like an Easter egg hunt. You can hide each child's goodie bag and then give that child a piece of paper with a hint for finding it - it could be a simple map drawing for a young child, a word or two, or a riddle for older children. You can also let the children do a paper clue based hunt as a group - with the goodie bag for the youngest being the first found, along with the clue to the next goodie bag, and so on.
Guess How Many
Fill a jar with candy. Have children write their name on a small piece of paper and their guess as to how many candies are in the jar. The child who guesses the right number, or comes closest, gets a sucker. The candy in the jar is then divided among the children. A variation would be that the winner takes the jar of candy home to share with their family. For added fun, fill the jar with themed candy, such as mini dog bone candies. You can also create a large lollipop bouquet with flower-shaped lollipops, and let your guests guess how many lollipops you’ve included.
Use our birthday clip art to make matching cards to fit your birthday theme. Two of each picture mounted on sturdy cardstock and laminated, if desired. Or, purchase a memory game to compliment your chosen theme.
Who Am I?
When the children come through the door tape a farm animal or item/object to their backs. Through the course of the party they may ask each other yes and no questions about what they are. Explain that the first question they may want to ask is "Am I an animal or an object?" At the end of the party each child takes a turn saying what they think they are. Suggestions: cow, pig, sheep...pitchfork, saddle, horseshoe, hay, milk, barn, tractor, etc..
Is similar to Who Am I?, but this time you whisper in each childs ear a name of a farm animal. Tell them that there is at least one other person that is the same animal as they are. Throughout the party they may ask each other yes and no questions to try to figure out who their "Farm Buddy" is. At the end of the party tell everyone to go sit by who they think their buddy is. Go over the clues with the kids until they figure it out and everyone is sitting next to the correct buddy.
Players sit in a circle. The first player starts by saying, "At my birthday dinner I like to eat hamburgers". The next player must repeat "At my birthday dinner I like to eat hamburger..." and add another dish. This continues all the way around the circle with each player reciting the dishes in the exact order they have been given and then adding a new one. If a player makes a mistake they slide out of the circle and the game continues. The person left who can perfectly recite the birthday dinner menu wins.
Button, Button, Who's got the Button
A child is chosen to be "it" and hides her eyes as a button is given to a child to hide in his lap or behind his back. "It" then has three chances to guess which child has the item. (All children hide their hands in their laps/behind their backs like they have it.) For animal themes, select an item that goes with the animal, such as an animal figure. If you're doing a character theme like Cinderella it would be "Slipper, Slipper, Who's got the Slipper".
Scavenger hunts are a fun way to entertain kids at birthday parties. Rather than encouraging competitiveness between teams, have children work together to find all the items. Hide items in yard or designated rooms.
Be sure to check out our party crafts and favors for a variety of fun ideas. Other fun crafts are decorating t-shirts or plastic visors, or making various craft kit items, such as tissue paper flowers or jewelry
And you'll find invitations, placemats, party tags and more on our birthday printables page. Enjoy!