One of life's simplest pleasures is playing in water! Kids typically love water! My kids are always trying to create water activities for us to try. You can find 20 of our favorite toddler water activities here.
As a farewell to summer (since my big kids started back at school on Monday), we hosted a little water party last week! This party was set up as a kindergarten kick off party for my 5-year-old, but we also had my other three kids participating, so there was quite a range in ages at the party!
Today I want to share all about this easy to set up water party and why it is awesome for toddlers, preschoolers, and older kids! You can do this anytime the weather is warm enough!
One of the most important things about any party is how you prepare and plan ahead. A few weeks ago I sat down with my son and he helped me come up with a game plan for our party.
Here's what we included in this water party:
1. Games- treasure hunting and squirt gun knock down
2. Free Play- bubbles and chalk
3. Science- ice excavation
4. Snacktime & a treat
5. Water Play activities
Scroll down to read more details about each of these water party activities!
GAME- TREASURE HUNTING
Hunting for treasure is the easiest game. We started by getting two big baby pools and filling them with water. Next, we added in plastic gold coins and jeweled rings and threw them in the water. Finally, we gave the kids bags and buckets to use to hunt for the treasure.
At the end of the party, we let every kid take a few pieces home. It was a hit and my 7-year-old set it all up... so like I said, it was SO easy to set up!
GAME- SQUIRT GUN KNOCK DOWN
Next, we got a bunch of cheap water guns and big plastic cups for a squirt gun knock down game. We filled up two big buckets with water to use as our squirt gun refilling stations. The kids started out the activity by filling up their water gun and then helped to build cup towers on a little table.
Once their towers were complete, they used the squirt gun to knock down their towers. Some kids had to stand really close for it to work, some had to stand further away. The kids tried out the different squirt guns to see which ones shot the hardest or fastest. It was a good little science experiment.
This game was set up by my 10-year-old. It was simple to fill the buckets and restack the cups again and again. When the kids got tired of shooting water, they kept building cups and knocking them down with their hands or legs. It was an activity that kept on giving! So much fun!
SCIENCE- ICE EXCAVATION
If you've ever seen me post about any party before, you know that ice excavation activities are part of our usual drill. Many of the kids that came to this party have come to parties before when we've done excavations... and then love it every time. They always love the thrill of excavating something new... and they love trying to see how fast they can melt their ice.
For this activity, you need water, plastic containers, little plastic animals, turkey basters, cups of warm/cold water, and some rock salt (optional).
You can read the full tutorial on how I set up ice excavations here. We do these for pretty much every holiday! They are always a hit.
FREE PLAY- BUBBLES & CHALK
I always love to have bubble wands on hand for kids that might want something else to do or want to take a break from anything structured.
We also designated a spot for chalk drawing and kids could do that whenever they wanted on the pavement too.
WATER PLAY- WATER BLOB
I had aspirations to make our own DIY water blob, since I've pinned so many tutorials, but then I found this (affiliate link) H2OGO Water Blobz at Target and it required no effort except adding a hose, so I was in!
The kids loved it! Make sure to fill it up about 20 minutes before you are going to use it... because it takes a little while to get all the way filled up.
WATER PLAY- SLIP N' SLIDE
These are the best... just make sure you get it off your grass afterwards ASAP before you burn it. I had my party helper monitor the slip n' slide lines to make sure there were no collisions and everyone went the same direction. It took the kids a little while to perfect their slides, and then once that happened, getting them off it was no small feat!
We got our (affiliate link) H2OGO slip n slide from Target, but you can grab one on Amazon too.
We kept our party food super simple. We had mini sand buckets for the kids to put snacks in. They could grab fishy crackers or pretzels from the bigger sand buckets.
We also made crab sandwiches (similar to these) using croissants, turkey, cheese, and marshmallows stuck to toothpicks. They were hysterical. The kids used a sharpie to put eyeballs on the marshmallows and then they didn't eat those... but I gave them each two more to eat.
To finish off the party, the kids got to have some blue "ocean" themed jello with colorful goldfish stuck in it. It was so easy to make and everyone loved it.
This might have been the simplest to set up and least complicated party that I have thrown and all of the kids had fun and so did I! I love when parties can be stress-free! I think it helped that I had low expectations and we set up the different stations and kids didn't get assigned, they just got to pick and choose what they wanted to do. Keeping things less structured and more fluid definitely helped.
Have you every hosted a water party before? What sort of activities did you plan?
If you liked this party, you might enjoy our Shark and Water Themed Party too.