Toddlers feel excited for birthdays, due to all the special treatment, balloons, cake, and other celebrations on their big day. Birthday parties develop their socializing skills while letting them have fun.
Keeping toddlers engaged in any one activity for long is impossible, as their attention span is quite short. Toddlers are energetic and ever ready to explore something new, hence they tend to get grumpy if they don’t understand activities and are unable to participate or win.
Choosing age-appropriate activities is important to let them have a gala time. Here is a curated list of fun toddler birthday party games that you could let them play during the birthday bash.
30 Fun Toddler Birthday Party Games
Indoor Birthday Party Games For Toddlers
- Passing the parcel: A teddy, ball, toy, or box can be chosen as the parcel for this game. All the children sit in a circle as they pass the parcel to each other on the beats of music. You have to play music and stop it at intervals. When music stops, the toddler with the parcel has to perform any individual activity – it could be dancing, singing, or anything random.
- Make a train: Toddlers feel excited when it comes to train and travel. An adult can be the engine for the train and ask all the children to line-up to form the train bogies. Then the engine runs making sounds of a train, followed by all the toddlers participating.
- Musical statue: Ask all the toddlers to dance standing in one place when music plays, and as the music stops, they need to freeze like a statue. An adult can observe them, and those who move when music pauses is out of the game.
- Charades: Guessing the character right might be amusing for toddlers. Make chits and add easy words for toddlers to enact. The words to act can be the names of any animal, Disney movie, color, etc.
- Duck and goose: In this game, all the toddlers have to sit in a circle, and one toddler acts as a goose. The goose taps on the head of children sitting down saying “duck! duck! duck!” and randomly taps one child saying “goose.” The child has to run and catch the goose. If the goose manages to sit in the empty spot, the new child becomes the goose, and if they get caught, they have to be the goose again. And the game follows.
- Crafts corner: Children love making crafts, so setting a crafts corner is a good idea. You need to keep all the craft materials ready for all the children attending the party.
- Find your match: In this game, there are tokens with the same word written only on any two of them. The tokens are randomly distributed between the toddlers. The task is to find a child with the matching token.
- Nursery rhymes karaoke: A great way to entertain children is by singing their favorite nursery rhymes. Karaokes help children learn the lyrics of the songs and rhymes. You can give treats to those who get all the words right.
- Who am I?: Adults can read aloud any riddle and ask every child to guess who or what it is. The riddles can be simple and funny too.
- Rings and the cone: Throwing rings aiming at the cone is a great way of engaging kids as they develop their concentration and coordination skills. You can buy a cone and rings set from any nearby toy store. Ensure you get sufficient cones and ring sets for all the toddlers coming to the party.
- Finger painting: Most children enjoy painting! Setting a finger-painting competition would be a great game idea for toddlers. Finger painting does not need many tools, and it is easy to master, Also, it develops children’s creativity.
- Hide and seek: One child counts to ten with their eyes closed and all the other children hide at secret spots in the house. The task is to find every hidden person. Then the child who gets found first counts in the next turn. Adults should supervise this activity, as sometimes children can get themselves locked in rooms or bathrooms, making it difficult for them to get out from the hiding spot.
- Cherry-eating competition: Competitions excite children! Organize a cherry-eating competition for toddlers, and ensure the cherries used are seedless. Set a timer. Now the toddlers have to eat as many cherries as possible within a set time. One who eats the maximum number of cherries wins.
- Treasure hunt: To play this game, you have to hide something special that would be of interest for children such as a chocolate box, a box of toys, crayon packs, and coloring books. Divide all the toddlers in two groups and let them hunt for the hidden treasures. Give them hints in between to help find the treasure easily.
- Dance contests: Have you seen anything cuter than dancing toddlers? Toddlers enjoy shaking their bodies to their favorite music. Arrange some speakers for the toddlers to play music and songs. To make the activity a lot more fun and easier, you can set up a screen and playa video that guides toddlers to perform the dance steps according to the music beats.
Outdoor Birthday Party Games For Toddlers
- Ringa ringa roses: This is one of the most popular nursery rhymes. Children hold each other’s hands, sing this rhyme while moving in a circle, and fall together on the line “all fall down.”
- Oranges and lemon: The game begins with two toddlers, one as orange and other as lemon, and everyone else is unaware of who is who. Then, these two hold their hands up making an arch, and one toddler passes through it. This new toddler is asked his/her choice between the orange and lemon and joins their respective group. Then there is a tug of war between the two groups to pull this new toddler on their side, and the group that succeeds has the new child as their strength.
- Pop the bubbles: Set-up a bubble machine in one corner of the room. One toddler at a time is given a chance to pop as many bubbles as possible in a given time frame. The toddler who pops the most number of bubbles is the winner.
- Frog jump: In this, the toddlers need to bend down and sit like a frog. They should then race while jumping like a frog and reach the finish line. Everyone should be encouraged to finish the race and then be rewarded with some gifts or toffees.
- What’s the time, Mr. Wolf?: One toddler acts as ‘Mr. Wolf’ and the other toddlers ask “What is the time, Mr. Wolf?” The wolf then replies with any activity and all the other children have to do it. However, when Mr. Wolf says, “It’s dinner time,” everyone should run away from Mr. Wolf, as Mr. Wolf will catch one of the running toddlers as their dinner. The one who gets caught is the new Mr. Wolf.
- Hold the balloon race: In this game, all the children are paired in a group of two. One balloon is given to each pair, and it is placed between the back of the two toddlers. Each pair has to carry this balloon to a finish line. The pair to reach the finish line first, wins.
- Lemon and spoon race: It’s an all-time favorite game of toddlers. In this game, every child has to hold a spoon in their mouth, and a lemon is placed on the spoon. They have to walk balancing the lemon on the spoon and reach the finish line.
- Blind folding: One toddler is blind folded and asked to catch the others. When they catch another toddler, they have to guess who it is. Even if they don’t get the name right, the toddler caught will be the next one to be blindfolded. The activity becomes a lot more fun when children guess the wrong names as everyone can enjoy giving hints to their friend.
- Water war: Children would need water guns to play the water war. Divide the children in two groups and let them shoot water with guns onto each other. The water should be used from a clean source. Monitor kids while they play to ensure their safety.
- Throw the ball: Arrange a basket or a tub at a distance from where the toddler will throw balls. One who throws the maximum number of balls in the basket or tub is the winner.
- Pinata games: You can choose balloons as pinata and fill candies or other surprise elements within. Animal shaped or other fancy design pinatas can be bought from the stores. Children enjoy hitting the pinatas. The participating toddler is blindfolded and asked to hit the hanging pinatas. If the child succeeds, the surprise inside is given to the toddler as a prize.
- Dress up: A creative and interesting game that is easy to play for toddlers is dress-up. Toddlers can dress up in characters of their choice and act like them throughout the party.
- Obstacle course: A great way to develop toddlers’ motor skills while letting them have fun is arranging an obstacle course for them. You can use chairs, tables, and pots to create an obstacle way for children to pass through it. Toddlers should be guided about what exactly needs to be done. An adult can give a demo before the toddlers start the activity.
- Red light green light: In this game, one toddler stands at a distance from other toddlers and acts as a signal. When the signal says green light, other toddlers have to move forward, and when the signal says red light, they have to freeze. The children who move on the red-light command have to go back to the beginning line and move forward on the green light command. The first toddler to reach the finish line becomes the next signal.
- Look up and down: To play this game, all the toddlers need to stand in a circle. An adult gives a command to look up, and all the toddlers have to look in an upward direction. The catch in this game is that when the “look up: command is given, toddlers tend to look at their friend if they are following the command correctly. When two toddlers look at each other, they have to shout “catch-you”, and they are out from participating in the next round. Children love this game, as there is lots of screaming and giggling involved. It is also one of the best games to help them develop friendships
How Do You Plan Party Games for Toddlers?
Planning games for a toddler’s birthday party is essential to have a hassle-free party. Here are some tips for you.
- Keep things simple: The activities should be short and easy to master. Avoid activities with multiple components. The rules should be simple.
- Choose open-ended activities: Allowing children to play freely without restrictions, although rules can be fun at times.
- Have a crafts station: Having at least one craft station is important to keep children engaged.
- Choose a classic game: Choosing at least one classic game in which all the toddlers can participate is a good idea. The more the participants, the easier the game should be to avoid any mess and confusion. Duck and goose, hide and seek, make a train, passing the parcel, red light green light, look up and down, are some classics that children enjoy.
- Offer rewards: Few treats or prizes can get children excited to participate in the games.
The aim of a toddler’s birthday party is to have oodles of fun, make some friends, and binge on snacks or deserts. Therefore, choose party games in which the birthday boy/girl can participate without missing out on the fun factor.