Birthday parties are very important to six-year-olds. They have definite opinions on what they do and don't want to do at them. Being armed with many ideas and options is extremely important when discussing birthday party plans with a soon-to-be first grader. Children this age are growing into "big kids" and this is the birthday celebration where they start showing that.
Six-year-olds love to do crafts. Their fine motor skills are starting to catch up with their imaginations, so crafts are an activity that appeals to this age group. They also make an appealing birthday party activity because guests can keep their crafts as favors. Crafts that are fun for six year olds include decorating plastic sand pails, pencil boxes or art caddies with markers. Guests can also decorate picture frames with stickers or glue and sequins. Another idea would be to make dioramas. Collect shoe boxes (or have each child bring one) and buy plastic figures of dinosaurs or animals, trees and plants. Allow children to use glue and markers to make their dioramas.
Choose entertainers that will appeal to six-year-olds by getting them excited without talking down to them. Mad Science, a science education organization, has parties that allow children to participate in science experiments. They can see how fireworks work or make slime, for example.
Kindergarten kids and first graders will also enjoy meeting snakes and lizards in a reptile show. A reptile show not only teaches the kids about reptiles, it usually allows them to touch various animals in a safe and non-threatening manner.
Have a make-your-own sundae bar. Six-year-olds are coordinated enough to be able to make their own sundaes, after you scoop the ice cream. And they will love heaping candy and whipped cream on their scoops. This works as an activity and as dessert.
Decorate cupcakes. Another activity as well as treat, decorating cupcakes can be as much fun as eating them. Make bowls of different colored frosting, sprinkles and candies available for the guests.