It is an annual celebration that should be fun and happy but, for many parents, at the same time every year they are plunged into self-doubt – is the party big enough/happy enough/liked by everyone/successful?
Your child’s birthday party should be everything that they want it to be. In recent times, however, there has been a huge amount of interest in providing activities, including birthday parties, that are gender neutral. In other words, something that boys and girls love but without either gender having to stick with traditional or prescribed roles.
We can, of course, fall into the trap of placing girls into one type of roles and stereotypes and boys into another, without realising. For many of us, we have the make a conscious decision not to do this.
To help you out, here are some kid’s party ideas that both boys and girls will love:
- The Sea
Water attract children, from swimming in the local pool to diving in and out of the paddling pool in the back garden. It is also a great party theme, providing loads of scope for being creative with how you decorate the party venue.
As well as having brightly coloured fish hanging around, you might also want to include some well-known characters from Nemo and other films such as Little Mermaid and so on.
You can have pirates too but don’t forget, you don’t have to just have boy pirates and girl mermaids; you can have them the other way round too!
- All the fun of the fair!
Doing something different does not mean having to spend oodles of cash that you don’t have. The fair is fun, full of laughter and merriment. Why not turn an outdoor space into your own funfair? From bouncy castles to fabulous games, this is a great theme that suits both boys and girls. They can come in their everyday clothes, or you can give the party a theme by placing it back a decade or two. Why not opt for the neon colours of the 1980s?
Sport is well known for being a vehicle that unifies people of all genders, ethnicities, ages and so on, and a birthday party should be no different. At one time, for example, football was seen as a man’s sport along with cricket and a few others. Women or girls stuck with more feminine pursuits such as netball and hockey. But things are changing, with boys and girls often playing mixed sports in school.
A sports themed party is perfect and you can tailor it to one specific sport – football, golf etc. – and ensure that every party guest gets to have a go at everything on offer. From touch rugby games to five-a-side kick about, you can have medals for all your party guests, applauding them for taking part and such good sports-personship.
- Disco dancing
Still as high octane and loads of fun is when you have a dance floor, flashing coloured lights and great upbeat music. Some children love to dance and jump around. As a party theme goes, this must surely be one of the best kid’s party ideas.
You can hit the decks yourself, and spring some vinyl (or connect your table or phone to a speaker system!) or you can buy in professional services of a DJ. You can have free-for all dancing, interspersed with dancing games and so on.
Make sure you have plenty of things that glitter and cool drinks for your hot dancers.
- Teddy’s Bear Picnic
This is a great idea, especially for younger children who may find the whole idea of going to a party with what must seem like hundreds of other kids, all a little bit daunting. Having something familiar to hold on to, like your teddy or another toy, is the perfect solution.
It also encourages creative and imaginative play and there is nothing better than enjoy the great outdoors too, with a delightful picnic. Even better, with this theme there is no expectation for children to fall into any traditional or predetermined gender roles. Everyone comes with their favourite toy and then enjoys what you have in store for them.
Is there a right and wrong way of hosting a child’s party?
In essence, there isn’t. You host a party along the theme that your child wants and invite their friends to come and help them celebrate. With the right party supplies, you can set the scene too, turning an ordinary looking room into somewhere magical and enchanting.