our everyday life

Games That Teenagers & Adults Can Play at a Birthday Party

by Sheri Oz

Who says that teens and adults can’t have fun together at a birthday party? After all, we are all kids at heart. For the next family birthday that you organize, surprise the young folk by showing that adults know how to laugh and be silly too. If you are the birthday girl or boy, however, let someone else lead the group in the games so you can get special treatment. If some party goers do not want to play, let them be an audience; do not shame or pressure anyone to do something they do not feel comfortable with.

An Easy Circle Game

Standing in a circle, the game begins with a simple clap: the leader claps to the right and the person to the right claps to the person on his right, going all around the circle. Once everyone understands the basics, you can add variations, such as letting people randomly change directions of the clap so that the clap goes to the left, until someone changes it to the right. You can make a double-clap or other simple movement that others have to repeat, such as snapping fingers or a dance step. It is amusing to all when someone misses a beat or turns in the wrong direction. You can make the game funnier by having someone in the audience time you, trying to get around the circle faster each time.

Guessing Game

One confederate takes the birthday boy from the room to explain the game to him. The other confederate explains the game to the party goers who stand around the room either in a circle or randomly. Someone is elected by the group to be the leader. The leader will make movements, such as rising up onto tiptoe, spinning in a circle or doing squats, and the entire group will copy these movements. After the group has had a short time to practice, the birthday boy is asked to come in and try to guess who the leader is. The group may want to repeat the game with different leaders and guessers.

Cooling Summer Game

This game is suitable for outdoor parties when party goers are wearing casual clothing. Fill up small round balloons with water and tie them tight. Give each person a balloon and stand them in a circle. The goal is to toss the balloons from one to another, keeping them going as long as possible. When somebody drops a balloon or grasps it so hard it bursts, she is out. The game keeps going until there is a winner.

Game of Skill

Ask for volunteers to work in pairs in front of the audience. There should be two to four pairs, depending on the number of party goers. Each pair gets one uncooked spaghetti and a bowl of dry circle shaped cereal. At the leader’s signal, one member of the pair holds the spaghetti in his mouth and his partner takes the cereal into her mouth and threads them onto the noodle. The winner is the pair with the most cereal pieces on the longest spaghetti (many will break).

About the Author

With an Master of Science in marital and family therapy, Sheri Oz ran a private clinical practice for almost 30 years. Based on her clinical work, she has published a book and many professional articles and book chapters. She has also traveled extensively around the world and has volunteered in her field in China and South Sudan.

Photo Credits

  • Digital Vision./Digital Vision/Getty Images