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11 PARTY GAMES THAT TWO YEAR OLDS THOROUGHLY ENJOY

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GET YOUR TODDLER PARTY STARTED WITH THESE FUN PARTY GAMES

The key to entertaining a bunch of two year olds at a birthday party is to keep things simple and play party games that allow every child to have fun. Here’s a selection of tried and tested party games that always go down well with two year olds. 

Toddlers have short attention spans and don’t understand winning and losing. Choose short games that have few rules, where everyone is a winner or non competitive games where the focus is firmly on having fun.

Do remember that parents will be sticking around with their kids. I’m not suggesting you need to provide entertainment for parents, but it’s worth putting together a  couple of games that parents can get involved with and enjoy alongside their kids. 

two year old boy with party balloons

11 EASY PARTY GAMES THAT KEEP TWO YEAR OLDS AMUSED

These are some of the most popular party games for two year olds, games that will keep toddlers engaged and having fun at your party.

1. RING-A-RING-O’-ROSES (UK) / RING AROUND THE ROSIE (US)

If we brush aside the fact that Ring-A-Ring-O’ Roses is purported to be a singing game that arose from the Great Plague of London, it really is a useful little game for getting a toddler party started. 

  • Number of players: 4+
  • What you need: An open space
  • How To Play:

Gather all the kids (optional: and their parents) in a circle and encourage everyone to hold hands. Make sure you include yourself in the circle, so you can lead the game. 

Start everyone walking around the circle while singing:

Ring A Ring O’ Roses        

A Pocket full of posies     

Atishoo! Atishoo!       

We all fall down

On the phrase ‘we all fall down’, everyone has to plop themselves down on the floor, either sitting, lying or doing a comedy tumble. 

Rinse and repeat as many times as the kids continue to enjoy it. 

Here’s a video of Peppa Pig and pals playing Ring-A-Ring-O’-Roses:

YouTube video

2. TODDLER DANCE CONTEST

Another good energiser to get the party going is to hold a toddler dance contest. This is also a great way to keep the parents entertained, just be ready for a sea of phones as parents race to capture the cuteness on camera. 

  • Number of players: 4+ 
  • What you need: Fun party music or current pop music and small prizes
  • How to Play:

Start the music and get the toddlers dancing. You can then shout out dance move instructions to get the kids really moving and bopping. 

For example, challenge them to be the… 

  • fastest dancer
  • slowest dancer
  • bounciest dancer
  • tallest dancer
  • Widest dancer
  • Funkiest dancer

Try to make sure that every child receives a prize at some point. 

3. MUSICAL STATUES

Now let’s hit up some of the classics, starting with… Musical Statues, it’s a classic party game that’s perfect for two year olds. Keeping the game short with lots of repetition works well for toddler attention spans. The goal is firmly on laughing and dancing together. 

  • Number of players: 4+ 
  • What you need: Upbeat music and small prizes
  • How to Play:

Play some lively kids’ party music and encourage the toddlers dance around.

When the music stops, yell “Freeze!” and everyone must stand very still like a statue.

The first toddler to stop and stand completely still wins a prize. 

Start the music again and repeat. Stop and yell “freeze” unpredictably. 

Give a prize to the next child who freezes first, and so on until every child has won a prize. 

Alternatively, you can play the game without winners and prizes and get the children to strike different animal poses each time the music stops. 

Here’s a video you can use at the party. It has Musical Statues music that stops and starts:

YouTube video

4. PASS THE BALLOON

In my experience, two year olds are a little two young to play Pass The Parcel, they really don’t understand the whole concept and their parents end up having to get involved, which can slow the whole game down and make it really rather tedious. 

Enter, Pass The Balloon. It’s a great alternative version of the classic game, two year olds love balloons and they love it even more when they are given a little sweet treat for holding the balloon when the music stops. 

  • Number of players: 8+ 
  • What you need: Upbeat music, balloons (always have spares), sweeties/sweet treats 
  • How to Play

Get all the toddlers to sit in a circle and then give the birthday boy or girl a balloon or ball to hold.

Start playing music and ask the child to pass the balloon/ball to the person sitting next to them.

Stop the music intermittently. Every time the music stops, the toddler holding the balloon/ball gets a small prize/treat. 

Keep going until everyone has had a turn of holding the balloon when the music stops. 

You can play with more than one balloon in the circle for larger groups of kids. 

5. BUBBLE CHASE AND POP

From balloons to bubbles. I’m not sure when bubbles became such a mainstay of kids’ parties, but I can certainly see why they are so popular. It can be mesmerising watching toddlers chasing and popping bubbles. It’s a great game for outdoor birthday parties.

This game couldn’t be more simple; blow some bubbles (you can also arm all the parents with bubbles and ask them to help) and challenge the toddlers to chase, catch or pop them. 

There’s no need for prizes, this game is all about having fun and enjoying the magic of the bubbles. 

6. SCAVENGER HUNT 

Staying with outside party games for the moment, a scavenger hunt is a great way to engage two year olds and their parents. 

  • Number of players: 2+
  • What you need: Buckets or baskets for collecting things, small prizes for every child 
  • How to Play

Make a list of things for the kids to collect from around the garden, park or outdoor space the party is being held in. Use pictures as well as words to make the list easy for toddlers to understand. 

Keep the list short and be prepared to chat through everything the kids find as part of the fun. 

Ask them questions about the items to bring an element of learning into the party festivities. 

For example:

  • Pebble
  • Green leaf
  • Red leaf
  • Flower (make sure it’s ok for them to pick the flowers!)
  • Pinecone
  • Twig
  • A blade of grass
  • Moss

7. BOTTOM SHUFFLE RACE

Challenging the party guests to a bottom shuffle race is a great way to add a little lighthearted competition to a toddler party. It’s also very entertaining for parents to watch. 

  • Number of players: 4+ 
  • What you need: Enough space to create a race ‘track’
  • How to Play

Get all the toddlers to sit on the floor at one end of the party space and set a finish line at the other end. 

When you shout ‘GO’, the toddlers have to shuffle along on their bottoms until they cross the finish line.

Make sure to cheer for every child crossing the line and then give out a little prize or sweet treat to each of them. 

8. PARACHUTE GAMES

Parachute games are a staple at daycare and mother and child sessions, which proves they are a brilliant way to entertain toddlers.

  • Number of players: 4+ 
  • What you need: Enough space to have the parachute, a parachute + any props for specific games (You can buy play parachutes on Amazon)
  • How to Play

There are lots of different parachute games. Here’s a quick roundup of some lovely easy ones:

  1. Up and Down – Lift the parachute up and down to create a wave effect. Kids can run under the parachute when it goes up.
  2. Mushroom – Lift the parachute quickly and let it float down. It will inflate like a mushroom.
  3. Ball Roll – Place a ball on top of the parachute and work together to shake it and keep the ball moving.
  4. Parachute Pop – Place popcorn or pom poms on top of the parachute and watch them pop up when you quickly lift the chute.

9. WALK THE PLANK

Borrow from the Pirates with a game of Walk The Plank. It’s a fun game that is great for developing concentration and balance. 

  • Number of players: 3+ 
  • What you need: A plank of wood or masking tape to mark out a plank, small prizes 
  • How to Play

Mark out a plank with masking tape or place a plank of wood on the floor. 

Challenge each child to try walking the plank without falling off. 

The rest of the kids and parents can shout and clap encouragement from the sidelines. 

Every successful participant gets a small prize. 

10. SING-A-LONG ACTION SONGS

How about having a good ole sing-a-long session? Action songs are a great way to get toddlers and their parents having fun together. 

  • Number of players: 3+ 
  • What you need: A list of songs and lyrics, (backing music or a nursery rhyme playlist is optional)
  • How to Play

Keep the songs simple and make sure everyone knows the actions before you start a song by doing a quick demonstration first. 

Here is a list of sing-a-long action songs:

  1. The Wheels on the Bus – use hand motions for the bus wheels, wipers, doors, etc.
  2. If You’re Happy and You Know It – clap, stomp, shout, etc. 
  3. Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes – point to each body part
  4. Twinkle Twinkle Little Star – wave hands in the air like twinkling stars
  5. Row, Row, Row Your Boat – pretend to row together
  6. I’m a Little Teapot – use actions for handle, spout and pouring 
  7. Itsy Bitsy Spider – use fingers to show the spider climbing up and down
  8. Five Little Monkeys – hold up five fingers and count down as monkeys jump on the bed
  9. Old MacDonald Had a Farm – make animal sounds for the various animals

11. SLEEPING LIONS

Sleeping Lions is a great game to play towards the end of a party or just ahead of inviting all the guests to sit down for some party food. 

  • Number of players: 4+
  • What you need: No props needed, enough space to accommodate the kids lying down
  • How to Play

Ask all the toddlers to lie on the floor as still as they can possibly be. Promise a treat for every child who stays still for the duration of the game. Of course the catch is that you or a willing parent will be moving amongst them, trying to make them move by making them giggle. 

Before you go…

I’ve got a whole section on party games for kids where you’ll find plenty more inspiration.