Ok - so what games are your kid guests going to play at your Christmas party?
Time to jingle all the way, with a heavenly host of party game ideas!
You can go the "traditional game" route
Yes - why not add some of the classics to your games mix?
Find more of these types of game on my classic kid party games page.
Skip down the page to these games
Guess what's in the Christmas stocking
Why not employ a helpful "elf" to assist with your party games! Ask your assistant to go outside the door and put one of the mystery items in the stocking. Then give the stocking to the first child, who tries to guess what's inside.
They can hold the stocking, feel the shape of the item, smell it, shake it and so on.
Why not keep things simple and use party favors which you can give to each child once they've had a turn? It doesn't matter if their guess is wrong ;)
Mystery stocking item suggestions:
I brainstormed a list of favor ideas you can check out, if you need any more ideas.
These are small items, so you won't be needing a very large stocking. You can tailor the gifts to your little guests, of course. Or get your partner to play the game, too - and add something more exotic :)
Christmas party relaysDivide your kids into two teams, prepare two courses - and you're ready to go!
The Twelve Days of Christmas relay
Tip: Your own kids could color these in before the party. Or start your party with this as a craft activity while guests arrive. Trim each picture, and stick onto card.
To play: place a bucket next to each team. After the whistle blows, the first child from each team runs to collect a picture, brings it back and throws it in the bucket - and then the next child runs off to get the next picture.
Stocking relayYou'll need: those two buckets, two Christmas stockings and a selection of stuff for the kids to transfer from the buckets to their stockings - oranges, candy canes and favors.
Each team keeps hold of their stocking. The first child runs up to the bucket, collects one item, runs back to the team and puts it in the stocking. Then the next child can run off for the next item. The first team to finish are the winners!
Name that tune
If you want the children to write the answer down, do this in pairs and have grown ups help any pairs that need the answers writing down for them (or help with the answers of course!)
When playing with younger children, sit them in a circle, play the tunes and let them guess together.
Christmas card toss
Tell the older kids they're not having it so easy - and include more cards or only cards if they feel up to the challenge!
Santa dress up photo relay
This one isn't really a race... it's just for fun! You could have everyone line up as just one team - but tell them you want them to go as fast as possible!
Each child runs up to the chair with the santa costume on it and puts it on. Then they have their photo taken! You could sit them on the chair to do this. Then they disrobe, zoom back to the other children, and the next one sets off. This is a good activity to do before your party food, too.
Pin the star on the Christmas treePrepare a large picture of a Christmas tree for the children to stick their stars onto.
Make a named star for each of your kid guests. Make a few blank extras for any surprise guests or if any adults decide they want to join in! Use double-sided sticky tape for everyone to fix their stars to the tree.
Blindfold each child one by one, turn them round three times and guide them towards your tree picture. Each child sticks on their own star - they may be aiming for the top of the tree, or you might just want them to get the star on the tree - it's up to you!
You'll finish with a beautifully decorated tree with all the names of the children on it. Time to get the camera out!
Continue the activity: Why not get the children to add to this wonderful decoration? Use stickers, ribbons, scrabook embellishments - or even glitter, if you're feeling adventurous!
Which bells jingle?
Kid toy bells, favorite ornament bells, loud ding-dong bells - whatever you can find.
It's better if they all have quite different sounds and look a bit different, too. For example:
* a big old school bell - very loud
* a glass bell - very tinkly
* a tiny porcelain bell - even tinklier
* a desk bell - the kind that go "ting!"
* a shopkeeper's doorbell - usually cheerfully jingly!
* children's toy hand bells - jingles from several small bells all together
You might like to ring each bell at the start so that each child has some idea of the sound of each bell. And you could talk about what each bell is used for or where it comes from.
Now the kids are going to guess which bell is ringing. They can do this
Or play this both ways - as a group first, then individually.
Christmas match up
You could use pictures of a stocking, star, donkey, snowball, snowman, reindeer, Christmas cake, candle, fir tree, or bell!
Write the words for each item on large pieces of card, and pop some sticky tac on the back of each one. The children then have to decide together which word fits each picture and stick the correct words on each picture.
Well - what with stockings, decorations, cards, candles, and cakes... Santa flying round and about, and the Christmas fairy making mischief - there are so many things to get excited about and enjoy!
And even if you're just having a few friends visit, you can still enjoy playing these kids' Christmas games together. The adults can still join in of course.
Wishing you all a wonderful Christmas!