Michelle from Ezy Kids Parties shares her ideas for entertaining the younger kids at parties!
One of the questions that I get asked the most is what to do for party entertainment for kids aged 4 and under? My advice is to save your money if you are thinking about booking an entertainer as most kids this age are too young to grasp the concept of a lot of party games or focus their attention for long, making it difficult for anyone to engage them for any length of time. It can also be easy to overwhelm kids this age with too many options.
That doesn’t mean you have to have 10-15 preschoolers in your house trashing the birthday child’s toys (although that would be enough to keep them amused & be perfectly fine with them!) and here’s five alternative ideas for keeping them entertained:
- Playdough station – we often set one of these up if we have a mixed age of kids at a party to keep the little ones amused whilst the big kids play games. Places like Kmart have great cheap sets of tools and tubs of playdough (or make your own) and all you need is a table with a plastic cloth over it (at kid height) or an area in you back yard/under a patio where they can sit.
- Painting wall – if you are happy for the mess (maybe advise parents to bring an old set of clothes or go all out and get aprons for them) then attach some butcher’s paper to your fence (or a large canvas to keep as a memento), hand the kids some brushes and paint and let them go for it. Better yet, put the paint in some cheap water pistols and let the creative juices flow!
- Musical stage – make a mini stage with some wooden pallets if you can source or just a black cloth backdrop and boxes made to look like speakers on either side. If you don’t have a collection of instruments grab things like recorders or whistles at the cheap shop and improvise with saucepans and wooden spoons for drums, saucepan lids for symbols (metal not glass!) and pasta or dried beans/peas in water bottles for marakas, etc.
- Reading corner – set up a little pop up tent if you have with an array of books (hard cover to be tougher wearing) and pillows for the kids to sit and flick through.
- Story time – this is a good activity to do towards the end when the kids may be getting tired or you want them to settle down. Grab a favourite book and sit the kids in front of you and read them a story. The big pillow books are great for this or just your child’s favourite story. Add some stuffed toys or puppets for characters for added fun. Or start your own story and get the kids to add to it one by one going around in a circle.
Most kids this age adore either something crafty, musical or messy so a combination of these options should keep them out of your house looking for mischief, until they have to go the toilet at least!
Ezy Kids Parties offers hosted parties, birthday cakes, entertainers and party food on the Sunshine Coast