8 Less Common (but Super Fun) Indoor Games

Want to take your child’s indoor party to a higher level? Surprise the kids with games they may never have played before!

If you’re hosting your precious little one’s celebration and want the kids to play fun games that are unique and unforgettable, check out the list below:

#1- Jelly Beans in a Bowl

A thought-provoking guessing game, Jelly Beans in a Bowl is sure to excite any child who already knows how to count.

What You Should Do: Fill a clear bowl with a predetermined number of jelly beans. Write the correct answer on a piece of paper and tape it at the bottom of the bowl. Have the participants look at (but not touch) the jelly bean-filled bowl for 15 seconds to half a minute, then ask them to write down their guess on a sheet of paper.

When everyone is finished, read all the answers and award the winner. Having multiple winners is possible, so prepare at least one prize.

Tip: Jelly beans of various colors look festive, but same-colored ones are fine, too! If jelly beans are not available, try gummy bears, chocolate eggs, or other types of candy. For preschool players, limit the number of candies to 25.

[Image Credit: Derek Bruff]

#2- What’s Missing?

“What’s Missing?” is a memory game that at once amuses and challenges the participants. Here, the kids get to sharpen their observation and recollection skills.

What You Should Do: Bring out 8-12 crayons and display them on a table for the players to see. Ask them to memorize the colors silently for about a minute. When the observation time is up, tell them to close their eyes. Remove two or three crayons from the bunch and hide these.

Instruct the kids to open their eyes. Give them a sheet of paper each to write down the colors that are missing. Show the crayons you’ve hidden and award the winner/s a prize.

[Image Credit: Dominique Godbout]

#3- “Bring Me…”

Test the kids’ observation skills and their agility with the “Bring Me…” game!

What You Should Do: List down the objects in the party venue that the players should “produce.” The objects may include a toy, book, party hat, or whatever is available and easy to hand over to you or the game host.

When it’s time to play, gather the participants. Have them look around the room and make a mental note of the objects in the area. Ask for the items one at a time. The player who is the first to deliver the correct item scores a point. The one who brings you the most number of items emerges the winner.

[Image Credit: GJ Charlet III]

#4- Freeze Dance

A favorite parlor game, the Freeze Dance will give the children a rockin’ and rolling’ time before they turn into adorable statues!

What You Should Do: Make room for indoor dancing and play amazing music. Let the participants shake to the beat, but tell them that they have to freeze as soon as you pause the music. Anyone caught moving or falling out of position while the music is off is out of the game. Repeat the start-stop action until there’s only one player left. This player wins.

[Image Credit: Jason Hutchens]

#5- Balloon Fishing

The Balloon Fishing activity inspires focus and determination among the children, all while keeping them entertained.

What You Should Do: Prepare lots of balloons. Carefully attach a couple of paper clips with blunt ends to the end of each balloon. Place the balloons in an inflatable tub or a large box, exposing the paper clips. Next, create the fishing “rods” using wooden dowels, equally cut pieces of string, and craft magnets. Glue a magnet securely to one end of each string, then tie the other end of the string to the dowel.

For the game proper, explain to the players how the magnets will stick to the paper clips. Ask each player to fish as many balloons as they can within a minute, holding only the wooden dowel. Anyone caught touching the magnet, string, or balloons will be out of the game. Whoever gets the most number of balloons out of the tub or box the right way wins a prize.

[Image Credit: Rhona-Mae Arca]

#6- Bucket Balls

Make your child and the guests “shoot some hoops” indoors by playing Bucket Balls, a makeshift game that uses socks and a bucket instead of a ball and a ring.

What You Should Do: Gather matched or mismatched socks and roll these up into balls. Get a bucket or basket where the players can throw the rolled-up socks.

For the game proper, ask each participant to toss as many “balls” as they can from a predetermined distance. Whoever shoots the most number of balls within a minute is the champ.

Tip: You may use plastic balls instead of socks.

[Image Credit: Nenad Stojkovic]

#7- Cup Bowling

Let the children be on a roll with Cup Bowling.

What You Should Do: Set up the indoor “bowling lane” with tape. Stack up colored party cups in a pyramid of “pins.” Get a plastic ball ready for the kids to knock down the pins.

Whoever knocks down the most number of pins bags a prize.

[Image Credit: Shan Jeniah Burton]

#8- Longest Greeting

A must for every kiddie party, the Longest Greeting game will surely set everyone in a merry mood.

What You Should Do: Line up the participants who want to greet your child, show off their vocal chops, and go for a prize. Ask each one to mouth out the line, “Happy Birthday (or Congratulations), [Celebrant’s Name Here]…,” holding the last vowel for as long as he or she can.

Let’s say your precious little one’s name is Tyler. The greeting should sound something like this, “Happy Birthday, Tyleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeer!”

The player who sustains the greeting the longest, without pausing and sneaking a breath, wins.

[Image Credit: Jonathan Cutrer]

Note to Parents

When planning indoor games, make sure that the mechanics are simple. If you’re giving out prizes, prepare small tokens for participants who don’t win, so nobody would feel left out.

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