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Mastering Kids’ Birthday Party Etiquette: Insider Tips & Tricks!

Birthday girl at her party

Ah, kids birthday parties – the delightful chaos that fills our calendars with confetti and laughter!

Whether you’re a party enthusiast or prefer quieter celebrations, there’s no denying the magic they bring to a child’s social journey.

Some parents dive headfirst into the festivities every year, while others sprinkle their magic on alternate occasions. And then, there are those daring souls who whisk their little ones away on an adventure-packed “yes day” or a whimsical trip that spells out fun from dawn till dusk!

But why do we embrace these merry celebrations with such gusto? Well, it’s all about sprinkling a little extra sparkle in our children’s lives! From making them feel cherished and loved to nurturing their budding friendships and honoring cherished traditions, birthday parties are the ultimate melting pot of joy.

And guess what? The guest list isn’t just limited to the little ones anymore – more parents are joining in on the fun, proving that age is just a number when it comes to celebrating in style!

Now, let’s talk about why these events are so important for our pint-sized party animals. Picture this: it’s a chance for them to break free from the classroom confines and dive headfirst into a whirlwind of fun and festivities! From giggly playdates with friends to devouring slices of heavenly cake and diving into spirited games, it’s a recipe for endless smiles and unforgettable memories. But hold your party poppers – not every kiddo may be keen on blowing out candles in a crowd.

Enter the highly sensitive souls who may find the idea of a birthday party a tad overwhelming. For them, unfamiliar surroundings and the pressure to partake in competitive games can stir up a storm of emotions.

But fear not, for every cloud has a silver lining! Playing host isn’t just about donning a party hat – it’s a crash course in kindness, empathy, and spreading joy like confetti. And who better to unravel the secrets of kids birthday party perfection than eco-friendly celebration maestro, Jasmin from My Little Party Hire!

Jasmine from My Little Party Hire

Jasmin from My Little Party Hire

Continue reading to learn about the do’s and don’ts of hosting or attending a kids birthday party.


1.Do I need to invite everyone from my child’s class?

No, you don’t have to invite everyone. I know it can be hurtful when you are not invited to parties but we have so many more social groups these days that often, along with siblings, you are looking at 30 children. Young children cannot even handle so many kids. Neither can the parent…haha. My suggestion is that, if you do not want to hurt anyone’s feelings, that you split the party into mini celebrations. You have one with the family. One with your playgroup at a playgroup session. Just bring in some extra fruit or cupcakes to celebrate the milestone and share a moment. And one for daycare, kindy, school friends. That way you can minimise the numbers and it is not so overwhelming, yet you are not leaving anyone out.

2.Do I have to reciprocate an invite?

In my opinion I do believe it is kind to return the invitation. However, if there has been a fall out between the children then of course not. Also, if the whole class was invited, it does not always apply either.

3.When do I send the invites?

Aim for 3 weeks prior to allow the family to organise themselves.

4.I am very picky about presents; how do I get around it?

How about a $5.00 party? You can ask in a fun way on your invitation that you would love to host a $5.00 party and that the money will be put towards a fabulous experience that the child wants. Last year, my daughter’s classmates “bought” her golden love heart earrings. The year before she went to Aussie World with the money.

You can say no presents please and mention, if the feel to gift anyways a pre-loved book would be great.

You may also like to try gifting an experience from SPARK POP’s amazing range, group gifting, or choose to gift choice with a SPARK POP Gift Card.

5.How do I help my child be a good party host?

This is a very big one, and it comes down to what age of course…

First up is us, the parents. Get super organised and avoid stressful situations before the party. I know easier said than done because there are often last-minute hick ups. I suggest hosting a party on a separate day than to the actual birthday date. Honestly your child wants nothing more than your presence and watching them opening their presents and to play with them. Sharing that precious morning without rushing around is beautiful.

For little ones (1) just tell them a day/the night before that it is their birthday party tomorrow and that lots of people will come and celebrate with you. They might not understand fully but it is important to include them. List names and what will happen, where you are going…etc. For the toddlers you can start mentioning the party a couple of days beforehand. Tell them in as much detail as possible in what will happen. Choose an outfit together, talk about what games you have planned…

For 4-year-olds and up, plan the party with your child. Let them choose their theme, let them choose their favourite party games, food, drinks. Make them part of it. Create a party planner together. Tune in if you have an extrovert or introvert as a child. Listen to who they want to invite and respect their wishes.

Tense situations, like sharing and presents and outfits:

Remind your child they will need to share toys (home party) for just that brief period. Discuss presents. Are you opening them at the party. Are they going to be put away until after all the guests have left? This will help minimize meltdowns.

Be prepared that they do not want to change outfits and do not want to play along at all. It can be just too much. Give them time and your guests will find entertainment whilst your child is getting used to the crowd.

Goodie Bags

6. Do I need to do goodie bags and thank you notes?

This can be a challenging one, yes but really no, if you feel like it is against your values. If you are offering an activity, like make your own fairy garden, that is enough of a Thank You. Kids are expecting bags and they will ask you for it. It has become the norm unfortunately. I would suggest that a themed cookie or cupcake for home would be a nice goodie bag. I always suggest books, gemstones, metal cars, seeds, sensory dough. Something that does not break and does not hurt the environment.

Kids enjoying the party activities


1.Do I need to RSVP?

Yes please. It is really hard to plan a party without the exact number. Often, we forget but please let the host know if you are coming or not as soon as you remember.

2.What do I do about siblings?

Please always ask if it is ok to bring a sibling. RSVP with a number to your host how many you are bringing if the invite says Siblings are welcome. It just helps to plan better. If the invite says nothing, ask if you can bring the sibling.

If you are the host, you can let parents know that the invite is for this child only, as you have booked a special experience for this party and it goes by numbers. It is hard as you as the host might feel like this is rude but it is always better to clarify. Just be prepared that they will be the occasional sibling coming along.

3.At what age can they be dropped off?

It really depends on how confident the host feels about managing the children. Parents might still attend if the kids are younger then 5.

4.How do I manage my child’s food allergies?

Bring your own snacks, treats and cupcakes but let the host know that you will do this as your child has allergies… often they will tell you that the party is catered for a certain allergy. If you are the host, let your guests know in the invite that you are catering for certain allergies. So, everyone is informed.

Navigating kids’ birthday party etiquette can be both challenging and rewarding for parents. We’re still figuring it out ourselves but believe from all reports that by embracing thoughtful planning, clear communication, and inclusive practices, we can create memorable and enjoyable experiences for our children and guests alike.

We need to remember, each birthday celebration is an opportunity to foster connections, create lasting memories, and celebrate the joy of growing up. Here’s to many more magical moments and happy birthdays ahead!

Meet Jasmin from My Little Party Hire

For more than five years, I’ve been advocating for parents to embrace the beauty of natural materials provided by Mother Earth in celebrating our children.

Let’s be as mindful as possible when it comes to party planning and consider the future of our kids with every celebration we craft.

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