If the thought of entertaining 20 little kids at your little one’s birthday party petrifies you more than making the cake. Then this is the article for you!
Entertainers are expensive and although they are worth every single dollar, with interest rates and the petrol price rising maybe you just don’t have the option to fit them into your party budget this year. And that’s ok
As a kid, I never had a party entertainer and I have witnessed lots of brilliant mums host their parties themselves so it is definitely possible. I decided to go on the hunt for all the tips and tricks that might make it a little bit easier and you know what? After hosting my son’s last birthday party. It isn’t all that hard after all.
Here are my top tips on how you can be a pro kids’ party entertainer and enjoy it…
1. Find an excellent party venue
Choose a venue that has some sort of entertainment already. And no, I do not mean a play centre (mostly because I can’t stand them) Your local park may have a brilliant playground. The beach is the best playground in itself. And even your home has a bedroom or playroom full of toys.
If you choose a venue that has something to entertain the kids for a little bit then you don’t need to keep all of their attention all of the time. They can run off and keep themselves entertained for a little bit.
2. Take the pressure off
Set up a few small themed activities. If you have a few different things to keep the kids busy then you don’t need to worry about planning a party game that every single child will love. Children will happily move through different activities at their own pace. If you children are still young and not old enough to complete an activity, such as a craft, on their own you could ask mums to help you and man an activity or you can hire one of our party hosts. Our party hosts are qualified and highly experienced babysitters and will run party activities for you. You could also consider activities that young children can do on their own without much help for example sensory play or colouring in (HINT: Crayola have a huge range of free colouring pages to download on their website and the best bit is a great search function so its super easy to find any theme)
Speaking of, this is also a really easy way to theme a party.
And don’t worry if this idea excites you but you have no idea where to start, we would love to help you, just get in touch.
3. Grab everyones attention, early!
Have you noticed how your kids pay attention to their teacher/carer? in a way you can only dream of? And when they start to lose attention, a few claps and they’re all back to listening attentively? I asked my teacher friend what the magic trick is and she said confidence, engaging them early and making it fun! Easy right? So, how do you do that for a party? Start the party on a high with a simple fun engaging game.
Here are a few ideas:
- What is your ‘themed’ name
- As each child arrives at your party, greet them by giving them their very own themed party name. For example Rainbow fairy wings for a fairy party or captain black beard for a pirate-themed party. You could Google ‘what’s your dinosaur/unicorn/superhero name?’ For some great ideas. We also have a number of FREE ones available as a part of our Themed Party Printable Packs which are available to download from our Idea Hub.
- Scavenger hunt – don’t worry we have some examples of those in our Themed Party Printable Packs too
Starting with these sort of games gets everyone into the party spirit and also allows you to have some fun throughout the party.
4. Don’t forget the rules
We are pretty used to an MC at an adult party standing up and delivering some simple rules to follow. So don’t forget to do this at your child’s party. Just don’t call them rules. Because thats no fun. We use a simple game for this at my son’s party. He had a dinosaur-themed party, so at the beginning of the celebration, I asked the kids to reply to my ‘Can I hear a ROAR?’ with their own giant dinosaur ROAR. This is a great game for parties that are held in community halls or at home. It gives you a very quick and fun way to grab everyone’s attention when introducing a new game or birthday cake.
If the party is held at a bigger venue where the kids have the option to run around, a whistle might be a better way to grab everyone’s attention and have them run back to the party table.
5. Get the crowd together
Plan a few super fun games that will get all the kids together. Keep them simple, you don’t need to make your life complicated. Think of the traditional party games that we used to play as children:
- Pass the parcel (HINT: save yourself the wrapping and hire our reusable pass-the-parcel bags)
- Musical statues
- Pin the tail on the donkey
We have a whole blog post with great party games ideas, you can read that here
6. Have a few emergency games planned just incase
This is a terrible mistake that I have seen some mums make – they have underestimated the number of games they would need for the party. The games may go a lot quicker than you think and if you have chosen a venue that doesn’t have some form of entertainment your guests may get bored. So it is worth having a few up your sleeve just in case.
You can keep these super simple and there doesn’t have to be a prize involved.
Some examples would be:
- What’s the time Mr Wolf
- Dance party with a limbo, or just a dance party (HINT: spotify has a great playlist (top 100 kids disco party songs) – think Gangnam style, Happy, Everything is Awesome and anything by Katy Perry seems to be a big hit!)
- Simone says
- Duck, duck, goose
7. One final tip
Be sure to ask another parent and/or a family member to join you on the day to keep things running smoothly. Aim for a minimum of 3 adults- one to entertain the kids, one to organise the food and keep things running smoothly, and one to help with any little ones that aren’t in the party mood!
Finish off your party with some food and the birthday cake and before you know it they’ll be asking for their party bags. And you can book yourself in for an afternoon at a spa with the money you saved!
Does it sound like a lot of work? It is! But it is possible and you may even enjoy it.
If you are not completely convinced, click here to have a look at our awesome party options and themed Party Crates which will make your party planning a whole lot easier so you can spend your energy being the hostess with the mostess. And if that still freaks you out, we have party hosts available here
Remember parties are meant to be fun!