A while back my daughter had a Wild Animal Party!
When trying to come up with a birthday theme, we thought and thought and thought for quite a while. She's kind of a hard one to peg down. She generally likes most things and isn't especially attached to any one thing. We came up with lots of ideas, but eventually settled on Wild Animals.
For the invitations she got to play dress up, which is always a Plus!
(I changed the name below-- just because I don't share my children's name here).
Once the guests arrived we play three games together and had one art project.
Add that with Pizza and Cupcakes and it was a dream four-year-old birthday party!
First Game: Knock Over the Animals!
Our first game was knocking over animal cups that I painted.
To hear the crash of the cups was so much fun. Each kid couldn't wait to try.
We played this three times.
Second Game: Pin the Banana on the Monkey!
As long as I am in charge of parties, there will be the game, Pin the (object) on the (object).
I've done it for all of our parties!
I had little cardboard cut out bananas, where the kids tried to pin (tape) it onto the Monkey's hand.
Third Game: Going on a Bear Hunt!
I asked my husband if he would plan a game this time. He's pleasantly agreed.
Here's what he came up with.
The game starts by reading the book, Going on a Bear Hunt.
Before the last couple of pages you stop (right before they go into the cave).
Then you read the clues
#1: It's our turn to go on a real Bear Hunt. Who's Ready? This animal has a clue, but we need to find him first. This animal eats bananas and swings in trees. He hides in your house, under the key. (answer: a monkey, in the cupboard.)
#2: This animal lives in Africa and has a big horn. You can find him in the room with toys, not corn.
(answer: a rhinoceros, in the toy room.)
#3: Your next clue is with an animal who likes to hop. You can find her in the room of your Pop.
(answer: a bunny, in Dad and Mom's room.)
#4: The next animal stands on one leg and is pink. You can find her somewhere in this house watching TV, I think.
(answer: pink flamingo, by the TV)
#5: The next animal has lots of spots and is just a baby. Look in the boy's room, for luck, just maybe.
(answer: baby dalmatian, in the brother's room.)
#6: This next animal is big, strong, and it can really go. Perhaps you could say he is buff and low. He is in the green room, under the water.
(answer: buffalo, under the upstairs sink.)
#7: This next animal carries his house on his back and tastes great in a stew. He's now in a pot getting ready for you.
(answer: turtle, in the pots and pans.)
#8: Last clue in your bear hunt! Go to the place where towels are kept. But be careful we haven't found that bear yet!
(answer: Big Bear in the linen closet.)
Last clue on the big bear: You found me and I'm now yours to keep! For your helpers, here's a special treat!
(a box of animal crackers for each guest.)
This is the only picture I happened to capture from this game. Too much fun being had.
The bear hunt was So much fun! The kids just loved going from clue to clue, running all over the house together!
One Art Project: Wild Animal Art!
While the kids were playing the first two games I had a fellow Mom help grab the kids aside to make their wild animal art. She asked them which animal they wanted to make (by looking at my samples), then painted their hands accordingly on a small white canvas. Then, helped them clean up and grab the next kid.
Then, while everyone was opening presents, I quickly turned their hands into their animals. This was their "party favor". These turned out so cute with their little hands.
But before presents, we had a quick pizza dinner, with "wild" fruit salad, and Pink Flamingo lemonade.
And of course, we had to enjoy our wild animal cupcakes. These were real simple, I followed an idea I saw from Betty Crocker.
Happy Birthday, Sweetie, you Wild Thing!
For more parties check out: