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Birthday Party Agenda
Of course the one time I actually intended to have a birthday party for any of my kids, a pandemic hits. In lieu of a kids’ fun center party, I planned a virtual gathering! I prepared an agenda with descriptions of how to play the games so that everyone can follow along. This will help sync up the activities and help everyone stay on task. The host can refer to the agenda item number and display the number as a card within view of the video in case the guests get distracted, side tracked, or lost. The agenda also contains explanations of all the games. Liven up the remote celebration with streamers, balloons, and festive signs in the back drop of the screen!
Video Chat Friendly Birthday Games
Pin the carrot on Olaf (from the Sketchpad blog). Print out the images of Olaf and the carrots (tip – I dragged the image to my desktop and saved it as a pdf). Cut out Olaf. Cut out 3 carrots for each child. Put double sided tape on the back of each carrot. Blindfold child and give them 3 attempts to put the carrot nose on Olaf. Repeat for each kid. Hold up Olaf for the camera!
Cotton ball race. Prepare a few cotton balls and masking tape. Measure out 6 feet of masking tape (or we used painters tape). Tape it down to the floor. Pretend to be Gale, the wind spirit from Frozen 2, and race to see who can blow the cotton ball to the end of the tape.
Frozen BINGO (from the Artsy Fartsy Mama blog). Print out pages 3-4 for the blank Bingo card and Bingo space images (1 set for each child if you have multiple kids). Cut them out and glue the pieces to the blank card. Prepare 20 game pieces (for each child) to put on the card when each item is called out. Can use chocolate chips, marshmallows, M&Ms, referably something edible. Don’t use coins or magnets (or the small pretty blue fish tank pebbles that we used here during our trial run… heh) – don’t want kids to ingest them by accident! During the actual birthday party, we used chocolate chips, and we saw our friends using raisins and M&Ms. It was cute to see the kids munching away at their game pieces while waiting for the cards to be called.
Here are some other games that can also be played over a video chat (without being on a digital platform like a video game or app game): Red Rover Red Rover (kind of like follow the leader), Charades, Pictionary, Taboo, Freeze Dance, Twister.
It’s nice to have a prompt or two for the kids to share something about themselves. In between the games, I asked the kids to share their favorite Frozen movie scenes and songs. “Samantha?” was definitely a favorite, and “Let It Go” was still a winner! Protip: Since all the microphones were on during the party – as they should be since a normal party would rightfully be quite noisy – I called each child to answer the questions one at a time so that we could all hear everyone’s answer.
What’s a Party Without Cake?
We took a break between BINGO games to show the cupcakes. We put candles in the cupcakes, and sang happy birthday. Then the birthday child blew out the candles… and a got a couple blown out, the rest required assistance from the eager sibling. While we could not share our cupcakes with our friends, one of the kids on the video was eating a piece of cake which I thought was such a sweet gesture of solidarity!
Oh, and because I’m a betamomma – disorganized, last minute prep – my child didn’t get streamers or real balloons. Instead, she had to settle for “HAPPY BDAY” bubble letters and balloons drawn on the back of scrap paper that her and her sister hastily colored in. I plan on keeping the sign up for my older child’s virtual birthday party in few months. Another snafu moment – since testing the games one week ago, I had lost the original cotton balls I had prepared, so I had the kids stall for a second while I ran to the upstairs bathroom to get more cotton balls. Imperfectly done is always better than perfection!