Back to School Party Ideas

    For a lot of households, it's time to head back to school or your kids have just started their new school year - whichever model it may be, fully remote, in school, or some level of hybrid. While some kids may bemoan the return to school or very much be excited to see other kids again, it's the perfect opportunity to celebrate a new beginning with new normals with a back to school party! After three whole months of fun in the sun, and many months at home some kids may have a harder time this year with summer fun ending. Help them get into the school spirit with an awesome back to school party full of games and crafts. Check out these ideas to get the kids excited about the new school year!




    There are tons of fun games you can play to celebrate the back to school season. Here are some game ideas for kids of all ages to play at your back to school party.


    Get your kids ready for class with a fun game of trivia! You can create a category for each school subject and write the questions and answers on flashcards. To see if you’re “Smarter Than A Fifth Grader,” have the parents and children take turns asking questions. You can also make a timed “lightning round” with a bunch of questions from different categories.

    Name That Snack

    Set out a bunch of classic school foods like Oreos, cheese and crackers, and peanut butter sandwiches. Then blindfold the kids and have them taste the foods and see if they can name the snack. Give some prizes away at the end of the contest for the people who answered the most correctly. Since you’re dealing with kids, it's always a good idea to include a little prize for everyone for their participation.

    Scavenger Hunt

    Put a back to school twist on this classic game by making the kids search for school supplies! First, buy a bunch of school supplies at your local school supply store. Then, before all the kids arrive for the party, hide the supplies all over your event venue ( Make sure to choose good hiding spots! Finally, make a few clue cards to help out in the hunt. It’s best to split kids into teams for this game so they can work together to track down the treasures.

    The Name Game

    This is a great game for kids to get to know each other. Have everyone sit in a circle and begin by having one person stating their name. The next person has to say the first person’s name and then their own. And so on around the circle. You can also have them add a descriptive word in front of their name to make it easier to remember, for example, “Bouncing Ben.”


    Set up a bunch of craft tables in your event space for kids to create unique items for the school year. This will help them get excited about heading back to class. When sending out your party invitations, mention to parents that there will be arts and crafts stations and encourage them to bring some supplies to contribute to the party. Here are some suggestions for unique arts and crafts ideas for kids:


    Book Cover Decorations

    This is a super affordable craft project that’s fun for kids of all ages. First, get a bunch of paper grocery bags to cover the books. Then, give the kids markers, stickers, and glitter glue and let them personalize their book covers any way they like. As a tip, be sure to write the name of the book somewhere on the paper cover so you can easily identify them all. You may also want to consider getting a laminating machine to bring to your back to school party to make the book covers stronger.


    Personalized Bookmarks

    With some scissors, heavy-duty construction paper, ribbon, three whole punches, paint or markers, and plenty of stickers, each child can create customized and personalized bookmarks for each class of the year. 


    Paper Berry Basket Organizers

    Yes, those green paper berry baskets you get at the store when you buy your fruit. Save them. Or you can even buy them in bulk online. With a layer of spray paint or paint, these berry holders become sturdy and make great desk organizers that are inexpensive and super cute. 


    Gifts for Teachers

    Why not have a craft table so the kids can make gifts for their teachers? Some ideas for teachers gifts are:


    Personalized Paint-Jar Goody-Bag

    Get some old paint jars and clean them out thoroughly. Then, have your kids design the outside of the paint jar with the teacher’s name. Finally, throw in some cookies, candy bars, or other items you think the teacher might enjoy.


    Pencil Flower Vase

    For this, you will need a can, some pencils, a rubber band, and a ribbon. First, wrap a few colored or regular pencils around a soup can and secure with a rubber band. Then continue to insert more pencils all around the can until you can't fit anymore. Finally, wrap a ribbon around the rubber band, and stick some flowers in the can with some water.

    Planter Gift

    Grab some mason jars, string, scissors, name cards, soil, and succulents. Have each child fill a mason jar with soil and plant in a few succulent plants. Personalize the name card for a parent or teacher with a special note. You could even paint the mason jars prior to filling with plants to get even more creative. 


    A party celebrating kids would not be complete without snacks. As a mom of two, the one line I hear my kids say most often throughout each day is “Mom, I need a snack!”. The best snacks for kids are easy finger foods. Kids love to skip the utensils and eat with their hands. Here are a few snack ideas to keep those kids eating healthy and engaged.

    Hummus and Veggies Sticks

    Place a dollop of hummus each, in individual cups. The cups can single-use plastic or a washable option. I do not recommend paper cups for this option as the paper would get soggy. Cut and slice up carrots, celery, cucumbers, and peppers into about five-inch sticks. To each cup add around ten to fifteen veggie sticks depending on how many will fit. You could even use ranch dressing for those kids who don’t enjoy hummus. 


    Fruit Cups

    In a large bowl, add an assortment of fresh and washed fruit. I prefer to keep things super easy with less mess and prep. Grapes, blueberries, and strawberries are the fruit the least amount of prep. For the strawberries, all you have to do is slice off the green top and toss them in whole. You could quickly half them all, but not needed. Squeeze a half of a lemon over all the fruit, and toss lightly. The lemon will keep the fruit from turning brown throughout the party. Scoop out a few spoonfuls of fruit into individual servings. For added fun - add a dollop of whipped cream. 


    Mini Hot Dogs in a Blanket

    Pre-cook min hot dogs, and allow them to cool. Roll each hot dog with a layer of rolled out, packed dough or puff pastry. Bake according to package directions or till the dough is golden brown. Place them all on a serving tray and allow the kids to grab as many as they can eat. 


    Popcorn and Candy

    In brown paper bags, add already pooped popcorn. To the top, you can add any assortment of sprinkles, or candy. Have a few options handy that includes chocolate, fruit, or sour flavors.  


    Make sure that you have enough food so that all kids can have at least one of each item. Adding variations to these simple options keeps the food prep easier for you to manage but gives kids a few options without overwhelming them. When food is presented in small, fun, finger-style eating they are more likely to grab a few cups of food and eat them while they play and hangout. 


    Here’s to another great school year with learning, fun, and friends!

    What other fun games and craft ideas do you have for a back to school party? Feel free to share with us by leaving a comment below, on Facebook or Twitter

    Author: Nicole Catatao