Birthday Party Activities

Spice up your child's birthday party with a carnival feel by incorporating these fantastically fun kids birthday party activities.

Here are some great birthday activities some messier than others but all lots of fun for a memorable time!

Face Painting

party girls with masks

You don't have to be an artist to create a masterpiece on a child's cheek. Simple designs like hearts, stars, spiders, snakes, or ladybugs can be just as much fun as full-faced tiger stripes. If you're not comfortable with freehand, opt for stencils instead.

Practice a few sample designs so you can work quickly during the party, and have all supplies on hand before you begin.

face painting

For safety's sake, keep the following in mind:

  • Only use paints that are labeled specifically for use on the face

  • Don't paint a child's face if they have food allergies, sensitive skin, or are younger than three

  • Clean your hands and supplies between each child to prevent transferring germs

If you're not especially crafty, ask another parent to help with the face painting, or consider hiring a professional for the event. Also, remember to have a mirror handy so the children can examine your handiwork!

Dress Up

girl dress up

Dress up birthday party activities are especially fun when they tie into the theme of the party. Have plenty of tiaras, wands, and dangly jewelry on hand for princess parties, or stock up on capes and masks if you're throwing a superheroes bash.

Or, let the children put together a collection of wacky wigs, silly hats, masks, and superstar sunglasses and let them design their own zany characters.

Cooking with Kids

kids cooking party

Children love to help out in the kitchen, and preparing tasty, hands-on foods adds to the birthday fun. Purchase an apron for each child to decorate with fabric markers or paints, and have them slip them on and try their hands at these culinary delights:

girl carrying cake
  • Mini Pizzas - Give each child a golf ball-sized piece of homemade pizza dough to roll out and top with their favorite fixings. (For smaller children, use pre-shaped pizza crust or tortillas.)

  • Pigs in a Blanket - Help the kids wrap hot dogs in strips of refrigerated croissant dough. Then, insert a stick into each one and bake for an easy-to-eat treat.

  • Cupcake Decorating Station - Have baked and cooled cupcakes ready for the guests to frost and decorate with sprinkles, mini marshmallows, and candy toppings.

More Kids Cooking Party Ideas


Send guests home with more than a sugar rush and goody bag when you engage them in a craft activity at your child's birthday party. Choose crafts that are quick and simple, using fast-dry paints or glues. Fun party craft ideas include friendship bracelets, refrigerator magnets, homemade clay creations, or decorating tee-shirts with iron-on decals and fabric markers.


A fascinating activity for kids, origami offers many age-appropriate patterns. Set up a craft station with stacks of brightly colored origami paper and preprinted step-by-step instructions. Master a few folds ahead of time so you can do a hands-on demonstration, and make a few samples of each pattern to use as models.

Kids' birthday party activities will enhance the fun of any party and create memories that will last a lifetime.

If a slumber party is part of your birthday celebration, check out these slumber party activities and slumber party pranks.

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