I accompanied my daughter to a very traditional birthday party in a village hall today. There were 15 girls aged 6 (the birthday girl will be 7 tomorrow) plus an older sister. About 3 other mums stayed to help plus the father of the hostess.
The mum had organised some of the good old party games and was using a simple portable CD player. We kicked off with musical chairs:
This started fine until my daughter burst into tears when she was last one standing. She wasn't the only one either. Are we not teaching our children to lose? Or are 6 year old girls just over emotional? All the party games resulted in lots of losers and only 1 winner and then it was time for the party tea.
It was a pretty healthy spread with sandwiches, cocktail sausages and some crisps as well as grapes & satsuma segments. The drinks on offer were pure fruit juice so no dodgy E numbers or excess sugar to fuel pre-pubescent girlie angst.
To let tea go down it was time for the obligatory pass the parcel. On this occasion it was set with a sweetie for each child followed by one main prize, so an adult had to subtly indicate to the CD operator when to pause. For a bit of variety there were also forfeits on alternate goes. This made the game a lot more fun. My daughter was lucky enough to win the last prize. Afterwards one of the girls was so sad at not winning it that my daughter tried to give it to her! She took my suggestion of splitting the set of 3 so that the other girl had one and she still had 2.
As we got to the end girls started querying whether there were party bags. Since when did these become expected as a right?
This was the first time I'd been to an all girl party and I'm not a 100% sure I fully enjoyed it! At this age girls start being quite moody and catty towards each other and a party gave them plenty of little chances to do this!
With my daughter's own birthday coming up its given me food for thought... This age group need to let off steam so even with a small number of kids that rules out my small rented home! I've found a local hall I can hire for £12 which solves the space problem. Think I need to make sure its not an all female affair so I may mix in her little brother with some of his new friends as an early party for him.
Yes there will be some party games but maybe more of a team affair than individual winners and losers. Who remembers the spoon on a string game or passing balloons between legs or even the orange under the chin race? Any more ideas?
If all else fails and the weather is nice I can always just chuck them out into the playground!