I'm a mom of two, super-powered by a degree in biochemistry and a lot of first-hand experience!
Host a Dinosaur Birthday Party
There is nothing more thrilling than a party filled with Tyrannosaurs, Triceratops, and the occasional Pterodactyl. For the perfect dinosaur party, you will need to have exciting party favors, games, and party snacks.
Set the stage by arranging dinosaur cut-outs or dinosaur inflatables around the backyard (or inside the house, as weather dictates). Create a T-Rex footprint on the driveway with sidewalk chalk and estimate how many children will fit inside the footprint. Make easy dinosaurs out of pool noodles, volcanoes that really erupt, and more!
1. Adopt a Dinosaur!
Have a dinosaur adoption table prepared, complete with adoption certificates. Place small stuffed dinosaurs in baskets containing dinosaur "kibble" (small candy like M&M’s or Smarties make excellent pretend dinosaur food). Print adoption certificates and have each child name their dinosaur. Perform a small adoption ceremony for each pet dinosaur and have each child sign the adoption papers.
The adoptable pet dinosaurs are a fun and inexpensive party souvenir! Small, inexpensive plush dinosaurs may be obtained from a dollar store or online. If plush dinosaurs cannot be found, use small plastic dinosaur figures as a substitution.
2. Go on a Dinosaur Hunt!
Go on a dinosaur hunt: Hide small plastic dinosaurs around the backyard, and send the children out with bags to find them. Alternately, place the dinosaurs into a sandbox and have the children participate in a dinosaur "dig." Another idea is to decorate plastic Easter eggs with large polka dots and have the children hunt for dinosaur eggs throughout the yard.
3. Make Life-Size T-Rex Footprints!
Create life-size T-Rex footprints on the driveway with sidewalk chalk (the average Tyrannosaurus Rex had a foot that was 3.3 feet long). Have the kids stand inside a footprint to see how many children can fit inside!
4. Dinosaur Egg Scramble Relay Race
Play the dinosaur egg scramble game! Have a relay race with the children, while they balance a dyed "dinosaur egg" on a spoon. The last team with an intact egg wins the race! If eggs are too messy, replace the egg with a water balloon for the same game with less mess.
5. Make Easy Dinosaur Pool Noodle Toys
Make dinosaur pool noodle toys. Simply bend the top of a pool noodle over and secure it with ribbon to make a dinosaur head. Glue google eyes onto the pool noodle and use felt to create ears and a spine down the dinosaur’s back. These inexpensive party toys are a favorite of young kids and can be used in relay races or as a take-home gift!
6. Make Erupting Volcanoes!
Build small volcanoes out of playdough or salt dough and make eruptions using baking soda and vinegar. Add 1 tablespoon of baking soda and a drop or two of liquid dishwashing soap to each volcano, then add 1/4 cup of vinegar and watch the volcanoes erupt!
7. Survive a Prehistoric Obstacle Course Race!
Run through a prehistoric obstacle course. Set up a balance beam that goes over “hot lava” created with red paper or red balloons. Crawl under a table that has balloons taped to the bottom and avoid getting hit by a “meteorite.” Tape paper fire to the inside of a hula hoop and have the children climb through the hoop without touching the fire.
8. Make Dinosaur Fossils
Make your own fossils with plastic dinosaurs and air-drying modeling clay. Simply press the feet of a plastic dinosaur into the dough, allow the children to paint their creations, and allow the dough to dry. This project may also be done with salt dough, though salt dough must be baked at a low temperature to dry.
9. Create a Dinosaur Terrarium
Fill a small plastic container with potting soil and let the children plant small succulent plants. Flat glass marbles and small stones can also be added, along with small plastic dinosaurs. This is a project best done outside!
10. Make Dinosaur Feet out of Kleenex Boxes!
Decorate tissue paper boxes (Kleenex boxes) as dinosaur feet. Cut kitchen sponges into triangles and hot glue these onto the front of the box to create dinosaur claws. Have the children wear the boxes on their feet and have a dinosaur foot relay race!
Dinosaur Party Food Ideas
- Make simple party sandwiches (jelly sandwiches are often appreciated by kids) and cut them into the shape of dinosaur feet. Place the sandwiches on a long platter so they resemble dinosaur tracks across the table.
- Cupcakes are a fun addition to any party, and the children will love decorating their own cupcake. Include candy dinosaur eggs (jellybeans) and green sprinkles. A plastic dinosaur makes a wonderful cupcake topper.
- Use plastic dinosaurs to create dinosaur foot impressions in sugar cookie dough and serve the “fossil cookies” as a party snack.
- Place yogurt-covered pretzels in small bags labeled as “dinosaur bones.”
- Place chocolate-covered raisins or small chocolate candy into small bags and label as dinosaur poop.”
Dinosaur Party Send-Off
After the cupcakes have been eaten, the games are done, and the dinosaurs adopted, gather the entire group and take a picture of the children with their new pet dinosaurs. Hand out any additional party favors and make sure to send a copy of the photo to the other parents: this is one party the kids won't forget!
© 2011 Leah Lefler
Leah Lefler (author) from Western New York on October 12, 2013:
My little boy loved his dinosaur party when he was three years old! It was a really fun theme. He loves superheroes, Star Wars, and dinosaurs - all fun party themes!
samowhamo on October 11, 2013:
If I were still a kid this would be my idea of the perfect birthday party but I am 21 now and too old for such things it would have been fun though.