Kids party games – 11 classic party games

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Looking for classic kids party games that won’t cost loads? There are some of the best classics about!

  • 3 Legged Race
  • Four in a row
  • Party pinata
  • Egg & spoon race
  • Water balloon races
  • Space hopper races
  • Potato sack racing
  • Beat the goalie
  • Giant dominoes
  • Garden twister
  • Pass the parcel

Easy kids party games

Remember playing party games as kids when you were a child? The thrill of racing for the last dining chair when the music stopped? Kids parties have become HUGE business in recent years, but you can still re-create the traditional party, drag it into this century and have just as much fun.

If you’re looking for party bag or party food ideas, check out this post. Otherwise, read on and we’ll show you how to keep the little-un’s entertained!

Children’s party games

We have often held parties for the kids at our home. Why? Well it’s cheaper, usually MUCH cheaper and unless there’s a really specific reason not to have it at home (like a joint party with a friend) it seems like a crazy waste of money to spend when money’s tight, especially when they can have JUST as much fun at home!

There were a few occasions when we caved and held birthday parties at a soft play center or hired a village hall for a disco. These parties were few and far between though, and we generally much preferred the home party.

Planning your home birthday party

Planning your party at home can be so much fun, but no matter what, a birthday party at home means there’s two things always on my mind when planing party games for one of the kids birthdays.

The first? I want the games to be easy. There’s enough going on and plenty of excited, possibly tired children for the games to need much brain power!

The second? Well living in the UK, no amount of forward planning is going to change the weather, so while getting out in the garden is fab, there’s always a chance it’s going to be wet and the kids are going to be confined to the house. So what’s the answer? I have a half and half game plan up my sleeve…..half indoor party games and half outdoor party games…then play them as the weather allows!

Below is our guide to the best indoor and outdoor party games if you’re planning a home birthday party. They’re easy to organise. The indoor ones are pretty mess free and they’re FUN! So many kids won’t have played these before, they’ll be talking about your party for weeks!

The best outdoor party games

Throwing a party at home for your child? We've got indoor and outdoor games for kids of all ages, that don't cost a lot, stick to your budget and the kids will love!

If the weathers holding up for you, your home birthday party just got a little easier and the kids party games might tire them out a little more!Lucky you!

Your games list has just changed and the kids can go a little more wild!

So in no particular order, here’s 10 games you’ll want to try!

3 Legged Race

Pair up, tie legs together and race. It’s an oldie but goodie and kids seem to LOVE this one. You don’t need a huge garden, just some free space and a finish line.

Make this one go on for a bit longer by getting the winners of each round to race the winners of another round.

Hilarious and free. This games a winner!

garden party games, outdoor party games, budget party games, free party games,

Four in a row

Party pinata

How amazing is this party Pinata? We LOVE this dino as he’d make the best addition to a garden party! This T-Rex can be filled with sweets, comes with his own whacking stick and is guaranteed to be a crowd pleaser!

Egg & spoon race

The good ol’ egg & spoon race. It’s old, classic, and just as much fun now as it was then.

Get the kids in teams and play relays, or go it alone…just don’t forget to boil the eggs first :)

Water balloon races

The best version of water balloon games we’ve found? Using the balloon as a ‘pass the parcel’!

Get the kids to sit in a circle and get some music going. They have to pass the balloon around as quick as possible and whoever’s holding the balloon when the music stops is out…or if the balloon pops, you’re out!

It’s a fast game and pretty funny when the balloons pop as they do…often!

Get 1000 balloons here!

Space hopper races


Space hopper racing!

Possibly the most fun my kids ever had in the garden was hours spent space hopper racing! There’s something about it that’s hilarious and crazy and utterly exhausting.

The hoppers might cost a little, but they could double as party take home gifts, or get two or three and keep them for your kids to use after the party.

They’re a winner all round…even the adults love them!

Potato sack racing

On your marks…get set…GO! It’s likely been a while since you raced in a potato sack, right?

Grab some sacks and get the kids hopping around the garden. We used to play this as musical statues to some music, with prizes going to the last kid standing and not collapsed giggling on the grass when the music stops!

Racing sacks here!

Beat the goalie

Pick teams, pick a goalie, then keep score as each team tries to beat the other goalie!

If you don’t have a goal posts you can easily make one using some markers (chairs?) or buy one cheaply. It’s a competitive game and each side loves to try and beat the other….have those chocolate medals at the ready for the end of the game!

Goal posts here!

Giant dominoes

Giant dominoes take a little thought and are great for the ‘towards the end’ of your child’s party when younger ones might be winding down and need a quieter game. This set from Amazon will last years and no doubt come out time and time again!

Garden twister

This Twister picnic blanket is really reasonable and will not only provide fun at the birthday party but also for all future picnics!

Perfect for occupying kids who’ve still got some energy and if they don’t, they can sit round and watch!

This Twister Picnic Blanket might be jujst what you need to keep the littler (or not so little!) ones entertained in the sunshine!

The best indoor party games

So the weathers wet and you’re not going to be able to get outside much, or at all. Indoor games might not be quite as frantic and crazy as their outdoor counterparts, but that doesn’t mean they’re not still fun.

It’s easier to recreate traditional kids party games if you’re inside anyway, so read on to get the low down on the best way to keep the kids entertained if it’s raining outside!

Musical chairs

It’s old, it’s traditional and there’s never quite enough chairs but somehow…it’s not a complete list of party games if musical chairs isn’t in it!

Gather as many chairs as you can, get the music going and see the kids dive on the chairs when the music stops. The last person standing is out….and there’s a chocolate medal for the last person sitting!

Pass the parcel

It’s another traditional game that kids go mad for.

The gifts inside each layer don’t need to be huge, even a balloon is fine for tiny’s and treat size chocolates are fine for slightly older kids.

Make this last for a while with as many layers as it takes to keep the kids happy and entertained. It’s not a party without pass the parcel!

Dunkin donuts

Hang donuts on strings and no hands allowed as each person tries to eat their donut as it’s swinging about!

Go for donuts without jam (yep, nothing worse than jam on carpet!) and holes to hang them up by. It’s hilarious to watch the kids trying to grab them, and even the slowest eater will be happy to keep going right until the end :)

Pin the horn on the Unicorn!

A modern twist on an old classic Pin the tail on the Donkey, here we have Pin the horn on the Unicorn!

The perfect game to play when it’s grotty outside, this fab set comes with a pink blindfold and horns to stick on the unicorn…laughs guaranteed!

Musical bumps

Don’t have enough chairs for musical chairs? Easy kids party games like this one require nothing but some music and a floor, where the kids throw themselves down when the music stops.

Simple, easy and well loved!

Sleeping lions

The party getting a little too much? Need timeout for 5 minutes?

Sleeping lions is your answer! Kids lie down on the floor, stay still, stay quiet….first one to move or make a noise is out. You might want to keep your best prize for this game just as a little incentive for the kids to try hard to stay quiet just a l-i-t-t-l-e longer :)

Simon says…

Remember Simon says….it’s just as popular today as it was way back when!

Start your instructions with ‘Simon says’…then leave out the ‘Simon says’ and see who’s paying attention!

It goes something like this:

“Simon says sit down”

“Simon says stand up”

“Hands in the air” – at which point those who’ve out their hands in the air are out – as Simon DIDN’T say!

Photo booth

Grab some dressing up and let the kids play photo booths! This pack has all the props needed for Hollywood glamour, just add some feather-boas and top hats!

If you’ve got a printer you can print off the photos before the end of the party and add them to the kids party bags.

Lots of fun all round!

Get your Hollywood glamour photo booth pack here!

Hula hoops

Okay so this one can be indoors or outdoors, but hula hooping is so much fun we needed to add it in here!

This multi pack of hula hoops will be enough for everyone to take one home at the end…a perfect replacement for a party bag! Yay!

Hide & seek

We’ll end on the oldest game known to kids….good old hide & seek! No equipment’s needed, it’s free and easy enough for even little ones to get the hang of.

Play with as many kids as want to take part, pick the seeker and away you go! It’s an easy ‘go to’ game when you need a filler, get the ‘found’ kids to help the seeker find the others, and repeat as many times as you need to!

So there we have our list of the best 20 party games for kids! Have any other games that you think should be included in our list? Let us know in the comments and we’ll add them in :)

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