10/14/12

Kids Harvest / Fall Party Games & Activities


A true party is not just made of crafts. There are also lots of activities and games! The kids have so much fun with this part of the day - and they especially love competing and winning prizes. (At least my boys do.)

For the class parties this year, the other class moms and I met and decided on several activities and games. This gives the kids more choice in what they'd like to do when they are done with the other parts of the party.

Here's a sample of just some of the ideas we all had, and some that we will actually be doing at our party this year.

1. WALL FOOTBALL

{photo courtesy of Spoonful.com}
Using posterboard and brown cardstock, Spoonful.com has a cute spin on the typical Pin the Tail on the Donkey party game. Click on the image above for complete instructions on this fabulous fall wall football game.

2. BINGO

Every class party I have been to has BINGO. The kids are crazy for it. They love trying to be the first one to reach BINGO and they enjoy looking to see if they have what is called. Not sure why, but they do. They just don't outgrow the fun! So we are including it for sure this year. It will have a fall theme. There are so many cute options out there for pre-made, downloadable cards as well as cute cards that provide great inspiration for making some yourself. Here are just a few that I managed to find.
These are cute DIY cards made by Alice Golden using rubber stamps from Karen Foster's Thanksgiving clear stamp set. It uses images instead of numbers:



{photo courtesy of Karen Foster Design}

 
You could do the same with a variety of fall-themed rubber stamps you have on hand. They would take a bit of prep, but they are so darn cute.
 
For a traditional autumn BINGO game, this is a darling set of BINGO cards made by Jenni Bowlin. It uses the normal letter and number format. This set is actually a mini version of cards made for scrapbooks on heavyweight cardstock, but wouldn't this make a great inspiration for your own DIY set? I love the colors and the titles used instead of the typical BINGO across the top.

{photo courtesy of Jenni Bowlin}
And here is a card using just words. This particular card is from BingoCardCreator.com, where you can register to download ones they already have made, or you can purchase the program and make your own. They also have word lists for you to use if you don't have some of your own in mind.
 

{photo courtesy of BingoCardCreator.com}



3. WORD PUZZLES

My second grader loves puzzles, always has. But word puzzles are becoming more popular now that he is that much more comfortable with spelling and reading. DLTK Holidays is a fantastic web site for themed word puzzle activity sheets that you can download and print for parties, lesson plans or just to keep the kids busy on a road trip. We'll be using the Autumn-themed puzzles at our class party this year to give the kids a variety of brain teasers and mind benders when they've finished their craft project.


  
DLTK-Holidays even has an online area where you can play various online word games. I'll have to remember that on those future rainy days when all I hear is "I'm bored!".

4. PHYSICAL ACTIVITIES

If it's a nice day outside, you could certainly get the kids outside too. Our leaves have all fallen now and it's gotten rather chilly during the day, but there is still plenty to keep the kiddos busy outdoors. Here are just a few ideas:
  • Have the kids make a large leafpile to jump into and then take a class photo of them in the pile or jumping into it. Would make an adorable photo for the yearbook.
  • Do a marshmallow roast using a portable outdoor firepit.
  • Do a scavenger hunt. Have the kids look for fall items, either in groups or individually. See how many different things they can find for the same item description.
  • Geocache. This of course would take some serious prep work, but would be so cool for the kids to use their noggins and sense of exploration.
Inside, you could certainly do a scavenger hunt in the classroom, or if you have permission, maybe even throughout the school. Another thought is to have the kids make a classroom scarecrow. Gather up a bunch of newspaper, old clothes from mom and dad and have them make a lifesize scarecrow to decorate their classroom.

I hope that this list has given you a good jumping-off point to planning your next fall class party or birthday.

Happy Fall!

10/7/12

Kids Harvest / Fall Party Craft Ideas

I am not sure I made the right move, but I volunteered to be room mom for both boys this year. In one class I am merely a helper, and in the other I am co-leader with another mom. Thank goodness I found another mom to lead with as I am not sure I would have been good at going it alone. This new position is in addition to the many jobs I already have going, as well as trying to gear up for the Waytonka Marketplace Gift Show this November. Hmmmm. Seeing that my last post was mid-September, I see my ability to multi-task is quickly dwindling!

At any rate, today I have been diving into Pinterest as well as Google for some creative ideas for the boys' upcoming Harvest / Fall Parties. We all know what a huge time-sink those sites are, right? But I have found some fabulous ideas that I just have to share. Perhaps with this post, you'll be able to follow suit for your classroom fall party this year, and not have to go all over the internet to locate ideas. One stop here and your party could be done!

The boys' parties will be the first week in November, so I am attempting to keep the party ideas themed more toward fall, autumn, harvest and will maybe throw a little Thanksgiving in the mix. With crafts, games and food, we have a lot of ground to cover. I'll do them in separate posts so as not to overwhelm you all at once. See how considerate I am?

First up, crafts!

1. FINGERPRINT TREE

{photo courtesy of One Fab Day}
Sue at One Fab Day has a free Fingerprint Tree Template that you can download and print out as many copies as you need. Even though her site is mainly wedding-oriented, I think this would work famously with fall-colored ink pads and tiny fingerprints of Kindergartners and Second Graders.

2. PAPER INDIAN CORN

{photo courtesy of familyfun.go.com}

Disney's Family Fun site has great, easy-to-follow instructions for making this adorable indian corn from raffia and tissue paper. I think the kids would have a "ball" rolling up little tissue balls for this. Get it? (Yes, I am a dork.) But then I wonder how Kix cereal dyed with food coloring might work...? Don't the balls kinda look like cereal? Would the cereal even make it on to the raffia?

3. FALLING LEAVES

{photo courtesty of Busy Bee Kids Crafts}
 

This is a darling interactive fall craft I found at Busy Bee Kids Crafts. While it requires a bit of pre-prep, I think it is so worth the while. The kids will love shaking the leaves off of their trees. The instructions are easy to follow and there is even a free template to download if you don't want to make your own. I have several small leaf punches that would work perfectly for this craft! (I'd better get punching - maybe during the Vikings game today...)

4. POTTED TURKEY

{photo courtesy of Beauty and Bedlam}
There aren't specific instructions for this little cutie, but what a great idea! Balancing Beauty and Bedlam got it from Rebecca I think. Take a simple small terra cotta pot and adorn with artificial fall leaves. Cut a drumstick shape from craft foam, affix google eyes and clipped pipe cleaner to make Mr. Turkey. Then punch a hole in his body. Wrap the ribbon around the pot and string through Mr. Turkey to keep him on. (At least I think that's what it looks like happened.) The kids can bring him home and he could be used at the Thanksgiving table as a place card, a spot to hold crayons for drawing while waiting for the big meal, or as a snack bowl! Lots of possibilites for him.

5. PINE CONE TURKEY

{photo courtesy of Multiply Delicious}
Aren't these just the cutest little guys you've seen? Multiply Delicious hosts this fun craft which keeps the kiddos busy. They have some great photos and super instructions. If your school or home is in an area abundant with pine cones, you could even start the craft off by going on a pine cone hunt to find just the right one for your turkeys. These would also be darling place cards for the Thanksgiving table.

6. FACE PLATES

{photo courtesy of The Idea Room}
Amy over at The Idea Room came up with these funny face plates after seeing other versions in stores. (They remind me of those magnet platforms that had the tiny magnet dust you could move around to make beards on the face. Remember those?) Using simple paper plates, a Sharpie and some dry foods, you can (if you're as old as me) go back in time. I would have the kids glue their food on so they can become masterpieces in their family gallery. Too funny and would make excellent conversation starters, don't you think?

Come back for the next installment - activities and games!