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Hosting a kids’ party at home is a great way to save money and provides a familiar environment where children can truly relax and enjoy themselves. In addition, choosing a home-based celebration gives you more control over the party’s theme, activities, and food.
If you want at-home birthday party ideas, see my list of 12 ideas for hosting a fantastic kids’ party. With a little creativity, you can throw a memorable celebration right in the comfort of your own home.
From creating a brilliant party theme to putting together some fun activities and games, there are plenty of ideas to make your birthday boy or girl’s party a glittering success.
Whether you’re looking to host a small gathering or a big bash teeming with party guests, I’ve put together ideas to suit every budget and age group.
12 KIDS’ PARTY IDEAS AT HOME
Browse this list of kids’ birthday party ideas that work perfectly at home.
1. ZANY SCIENCE LAB
Create a mini science lab with safe and engaging experiments that kids can perform under supervision. This hands-on activity will keep them entertained while they learn something new.
Great for: Kids aged 5 – 10 years
Grab a science party in a box from Sublime Science. They also have some rather fab pre-filled science party bags.
Buy a bundle of 15 prefilled Science party bags from Dragon's Den winners, Sublime Science. The kits each contain the following educational and fun science experiments:
- Gold Sublime Science Party Bags
- Flying Finger Rockets
- Air Powered Helicopters
- Rainbow Diffraction Glasses
Plus a link to a FREE eBook packed with awesome experiments
2. DIY ESCAPE ROOM
Design a home-based escape room filled with age-appropriate puzzles and riddles. Kids will have a blast working together to solve the mysteries and ‘escape’.
Great for: Kids aged 8 – teen
Turn your home into an escape room with a Trapped Escape Room Game Pack. This is the Zoo edition, where players collaborate to solve challenging puzzles and riddles to save the animals and escape the zoo.
3. COOKIE DECORATING PARTY
Bake a batch of plain sugar cookies in advance and set up a decorating station with various icings and toppings. Kids will have fun personalizing their cookies before devouring them.
Great for: Kids aged 4 – 8
By five-years-old kids love the idea of making their own treats. This dinosaur baking kit is a complete party favour-in-a-box that doubles as a thank-you.
4. DIY MOVIE THEATRE
Transform your living room into a cosy movie theatre by setting up a projector and comfortable seating. Let the kids choose their favourite film, and remember the popcorn and snacks!
If your child loves a particular movie or character, you can base the movie party theme on it. You can decorate the party area with posters and cutouts of the characters and organize fun games and activities related to the movie.
Movie parties are great for tweens and teens and make a brilliant theme for a sleepover party.
Great for: Kids aged 10 – teen
Related: Read my complete guide to hosting an epic sleepover party
5. ART AND CRAFT PARTY
Set up a creative station with various art supplies and let the kids’ imaginations run wild. They’ll love designing their masterpieces, and the artwork makes for great keepsakes. What I like most about craft parties is that the craft can double up as a party favour!
There is all manner of craft activities that work well for kids’ parties. I’ve compiled a big list of craft activity kits you can buy.
Great for: Kids aged 6 – 8
6. DIY SPA PAMPER PARTY
Set up a relaxation station with kid-friendly face masks, nail polish, and cucumber eye masks. Throw in soothing music, and let the children enjoy a pampering session.
Spa parties are great for tween and teen sleepover parties. Read my guide to hosting a brilliant pamper party for tweens and teens.
Great for: Kids aged 10 – teen
7. FANCY DRESS PARTY
Host a themed fancy-dress party where kids can dress up as their favourite characters, animals or celebrities. Add a photo booth with fun props for them to capture memories of the day.
Great for: Kids aged 4 – teen
8. AFTERNOON TEA PARTY
Create a beautiful or festive table setting, festoon the party table with delicious afternoon tea food and drinks and create a fun party music playlist to play in the background. Tea parties are great for tweens and teens. They also work well for first birthday parties where it’s more about the parents than the babies!!
Great for: 1st birthday parties and kids aged 10 – teen
Related: How to host a wonderful afternoon tea party for kids and teens
9. DANCE OR KARAOKE PARTY
Put on some music and let the kids dance to their hearts’ content. Alternatively, hire or buy a karaoke machine and create a Pop Idol-style competition or let the kids loose to sing their hearts out.
Want to have a party at home but don’t want to have it inside? Here are some great ideas for outdoor parties.
Great for: Kids aged 8 – teen
10. MINI OLYMPICS
Organise games and competitions in your garden or backyard, like sack races, tug-of-war, and three-legged races, for the kids to participate in. Award small prizes or ribbons to the winners for added excitement.
Great for: Kids aged 8 – 12
11. SCAVENGER HUNT
Create a scavenger hunt with clues and riddles that lead to hidden treasures around the house or yard. Kids will love searching for the treasures and working together to decipher the clues.
Great for: Kids aged 8 – 12
12. SUPERHERO TRAINING CAMP
Organize a superhero-themed party where children can dress up as their favourite characters and participate in obstacle courses, relay races, and other fun activities to test their superpowers.
Great for: Kids aged 3 – 8
OR KEEP IT SUPER SIMPLE
Of course, you don’t have to create a whole-themed activity party. Instead, you can create a party vibe with a few well-chosen decorations. Then put together some delicious party snacks, plan some classic party games, and you’re all set.
PARTY DECORATION INSPIRATION
Decorations can bring a party to life and help get kids excited. Here are a few ideas to help you set the mood and create a fun atmosphere for your child’s party:
- Balloons – Balloons are a classic decoration that kids love. You can use them to create balloon arches, bouquets, or even balloon animals.
- Banners – Banners are a great way to add colour and excitement to your party. You can make your own using construction paper or buy pre-made banners online.
- Paper honeycomb balls – Super trendy, these are the chicest way to add a festive flavour to an at-home party, particularly for tweens and teens.
- Tablecloths – A colourful tablecloth can make a big difference in the overall look of your party. You can use a plain tablecloth and add table decorations, or buy one with a fun-themed design.
- Streamers – Streamers are an easy way to add colour and movement to your party. You can hang them from the ceiling or use them to decorate tables and chairs.
- Piñata – Piñatas excite kids of all ages and come in all manner of themes. Buy one ready-filled, buy one you fill yourself or go out and make one yourself! Ensure there is enough room for piñata bashing without any kids (or parents) getting injured!
- The photo booth isn’t strictly decorative, but it can look fab to create an area where kids can take pictures with props and decorations. For example, use a plain wall or hang a backdrop, and provide props like hats, glasses, and signs.
Paper honeycomb balls are just so chic. Time To Sparkle has multi-packs in an array of different colour combinations.
I love balloons, but I always ensure I buy eco-friendly ones. Green Paw balloons are biodegradable, and Green Paw has taken the Climate Friendly Pledge. The balloons come in an array of colours.
This donkey is the best-selling piñata on Amazon UK. It comes with a stick and blindfold. You can fill it with sweets and treats.
FOOD AND DRINK
My biggest tip when planning a kids’ party is to keep the food simple. Even tweens and teens are too excited and busy having fun to focus on eating a big meal.
A great party hack for hosting parties for little kids, where there are likely to be more kids on the invite list, is to time the party in-between meal times. Read my guide to kids’ party planning for more useful tips.
That way, the kids arrive to eat lunch and will go home to dinner. Meaning you need to provide party snacks!
Always check for any food allergies or dietary restrictions before sending out invitations and planning your menu.
Related: Party snacks for kids, 60 of the best sleepover snacks for kids, 17 amazing charcuterie snack board ideas for kids
SETTING UP THE PARTY AT HOME
When setting up your party, have a designated area for each activity. For example, set up a table with all the necessary supplies if you have a craft station.
If you have a party area for playing games, ensure there is enough room for the kids to move around.
Don’t forget to have a designated area for food and drinks! Especially if you want to minimize spillages and clearing up afterwards.
Love them or hate them, party bags are a thing. However, it takes a brave parent to side-step them altogether. I have a whole bunch of posts on party bag fillers, party favour ideas and alternatives to giving out party bags or goodie bags.
Everything you need to know about kids’ party bags:
- 127 alternatives kids’ party bag ideas
- 23 loot bag fillers that aren’t junk
- 43 eco-friendly party bag fillers
- 31 Books and book sets for party bags and favours
- 18 best paper party bags
TIME TO START PLANNING!
Hosting a kids’ party at home can be a fun and affordable way to celebrate a special occasion. With creativity and planning, you can create a memorable party experience for your child and their friends.
Remember to keep the age and interests of your child and their friends in mind when planning the party. Don’t be afraid to ask for help from other parents or family members, and consider hiring a professional entertainer or party planner if needed.
Most importantly, have fun and enjoy the celebration with your child and their friends. Happy party planning!
Luci is the founder of Mums Make Lists (Est. 2011). Over the last decade or so, she has used her experience as a mum to create useful guides to organising family life. During that time, she has found the most joy in creating lists of ideas and inspiration to make it easier for busy parents to plan and host kids’ parties and find great gifts. Read more.