Lockdown birthday party ideas

Short of birthday party ideas and worried about how to make your child’s birthday extra special in lockdown? When we’re all cooped up at home and can’t invite family or friends round for a kids party it can feel tricky to know where to start to make your child’s birthday magical!

We asked the parents on our Facebook group to share tried and tested lockdown birthday ideas to make your child’s day a special one to remember. And they delivered – in spades! 

Here are some of the fabulous ways they made their child’s day amazing – that you can do too. To make your child’s birthday one to remember – even in lockdown.

1.Go BIG on the decorations

Lockdown is the time to GO BIG on the decorations. Tons of balloons, bunting, paper chains, fairy lights… There’s no such thing as too much for a lockdown birthday. Go to town with the decorations and watch your child’s eyes light up as they wake up to see the house festooned in celebration of their big day.

2. Lockdown cosy dens- make a special place to play

One way to make home a more exciting space for your child is to put up a tent or den – to make an exciting space for them to eat their birthday meals in and to play with their toys after they’ve unwrapped their presents. You can buy or hire beautiful teepees and tents for a special touch but your preschooler will be just as happy with a homemade den made from blankets draped over chairs or a clothes horse and kitted out with cushions and fairy lights. 

3. Spread out the present opening with a treasure hunt

Opening the presents is the highlight of any birthday. But with little ones it can be all over in minutes. Spin out the present opening excitement by making a treasure hunt for your child to hunt and seek their gifts. You could make rhyming clues for older ones or cards with pictures for younger ones. Another fab idea is to wrap lots of little stocking filler type gifts in tissue paper (a different colour for each sibling) and hide them around your house and garden or the kids to find. 

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4. Themed crafts and activities

This one takes a little bit of prep and planning but could bring big smiles to your child’s face. Pick a theme that your child will love and plan decorations, crafts and activities to go along with it. 

Emma said:

“We are doing an indoor safari. Bringing in his little tykes car from the garden to drive round and have blow-up animals to find with lots of balloons to look like leaves and trees. We will do some animal art and craft activities too”

5. Host a Zoom party with one of our class providers

We can’t plan the usual birthday parties but thanks to the power of Zoom, virtual get togethers are the next best thing. They’re a great way of joining your child’s friends together to celebrate and have tons of fun together. 

Many of our Happity class providers also run Zoom parties. We’ve been to a few and think they’re fab. The party hosts make sure they involve all the guests and keep them engaged and entertained – joining in songs, games, stories and lots and lots of fun. 

Nina said:

“We ‘went’ to a zoom party for a 5th birthday the other week. Brilliantly organised with a themed backdrop (superheroes), a count-the-balloons video clip, guess the animal noises, musical statues (including superheroes and cartoon characters), guess the cartoon character, some disco dancing, drop-off-the-screen game, treasure hunt (yey, finally a bonus to having toys and mess everywhere) and a few other bits. Kept 2 kids glued to the screen for an hour.

And no whinging about party bags or cake or prizes”

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Find an amazing Zoom party here.

6. Cake and blowing out the candles with all the family

Everyone loves a bit of birthday cake – and blowing out the candles is a must! Make it special by planning a Zoom meeting with the family – so they can share the special moment. They can sing ‘Happy Birthday’ and watch your child blow out their candles. If you can arrange for them to have their own cake or cupcake with a candle too they can feel even more involved as they share the experience. 

7. Bubbles, bounce and slushies!

One special thing can make your child’s big day feel magical. Whether it’s a slushie machine, a bubble machine or a bouncy castle – something a little out of the ordinary can mark the day as something magical. 

8. Special birthday tea

For your child’s birthday tea cook or order in a treat. Whatever their favourite meal is. Whether that’s pizza or fish and chips or pasta. Set the tea table (or tent) with party plates, napkins and cups. And make the meal an occasion that your child will enjoy. 

9. Snuggly movie night in jamas

Create a cinema experience at home by downloading a favourite family movie and making popcorn and drinks in special cups. Snuggle down and enjoy a family film together. It’s a great way to end the special day with some cosy calm family time.

You might worry that your child’s birthday in lockdown will be a bit of a disappointment – but with a little planning, a whole lot of decoration and some Zoom magic you can still make it a special day to remember. 

Interested in being a guest blogger?

Emily Tredget

Emily Tredget

Happity's CoFounder and our Chief Doing Officer. She looks after all things Marketing & Branding, Sales & Partnership, and Team. She struggled with PND after the birth of her son in 2015 so beating loneliness to reduce mental health struggles is her passion. Outside of work you'll most likely find Emily going for a run, driving her son to football fixtures, or socialising with school/church friends. She also loves dog walks and cross-stitch as a wind-down activity in the evening, and eating/baking with too much chocolate!