The Dora Party (2-4yr) Adventure Book Reading
Maria in Indian Rocks Beach FL USA
We just had the best birthday party for our girls. They have birthdays one day apart so it was for our two year old and four year old. The guests were between the ages of 1.5 - 4. There were 21 kids total. I really wanted to have a different party at our house. We live in a smaller house, but I knew I could make it work. I also wanted it to be all about the kids!!!
Invitations: I made the invitations myself. On the front I used card stock of pink, orange, and yellow and glued a picture of our girls wearing Dora costumes. Then on the inside I typed, Come on Vamonos there is nothing to it. Where are we going? ____ House. Where are we going? ____ House. Then I used our last name and said "The aDORAble (our last name) Girls are Having a Fiesta. I wrote all the details and used Dora stickers to decorate the inside.
Decorations: I didn't want to do lots of bright colors so I found plates with Dora on them that were just pink and yellow. I got yellow pink and orange balloons. I also got other store bought standard Dora decorations. I saved money using some plain colored paper products from the Dollar store in pink orange and yellow.I used the Dora toys we had as decorations (to save $ too). I bought Scene Setters from a local party store to decorate the walls. I also happened to find thrones (at Tuesday Morning) for the birthday girls and they were huge hit.
On the front porch I put a huge Dora stuffed doll in a rocking chair with a Dora balloon to set the mood. I also got kid sized tables and chair for the kids that I borrowed from a friend. I played a Dora CD with Dora music during the party. Also I drew a large kid sized dora on paper and cut out the face with an exacto knife. Then I hung it in our hallway so the kids could stand behind it and put their face in the hole. Cute photo op. I wanted to do Diego and Boots too but it just didn't happen!
Cake: I just bought a cake for each girl from the local grocery store. I wanted to make one but thought I may feel overwhelmed with the other things I had planned.
Activities: When all the kids arrived I had placemats printed out (Nickjr) and set at each spot at the kids tables. I had buckets with crayons so kids could color if they wanted to. I also had a sand table and a ball pit set in the backyard. I had made "friendship" bracelets for all the kids using yellow pony beads and blue flower beads (just like Dora wears) bought at Michaels. Our four year old gave them to each child that arrived. This worked out well because she greeted each child as they came in by giving them a bracelet broke the ice a little.
While the kids were arriving I invited the parents and kids to eat. I just got simple foods such as bagels spiral mini sandwiches fruit cheese crackers chips goldfish etc. (Doing Mexican food would be cute but I was afraid it wouldn't be a big hit with the kids). I also found Dora Animal Crackers. Once everyone arrived I gathered the kids together and read them a book that I had written in the simple format of some other Dora books we have. (The book was actually the exact adventure we were about to take.) I wrote it and had my mega talented sister illustrate it. It was simple but the kids loved it because I used them in the story. For example It is a special day It is ____ and ____'s birthday today. They invited all their favorite friends. They invited ____ and ____... The kids loved hearing their name.
After reading the story I told the kids that we had a pinata out front but that I had a surprise for them first. I played the Backpack song and then passed out Backpacks just like Dora's for each child. I bought plain white backpacks from Oriental Trading dyed them lavendar made eyes mouth and eyebrows out of foam (Michaels) and wrote each child's name on them. In the bags were things we would need for the adventure (discussed later). I told each child to line up at the door after getting their backpack so we could to the pinata.
When we went out the front door to go to the Pinata the kids noticed it was gone. We discover a note from Swiper that said "I took the Pinata and put it on the Chocolate Tree you'll never find it now!" The kids were all so surprised! So I explained that I didn't know how to get there but asked if anyone knew who we could call Of course they yelled "Map". I took out a huge poster board that I had drawn a map on and showed them the 3 places we had to go; fairy garden sand trap lake and chocolate tree. I reminded them that if they saw Swiper they had to yell "Swiper no swiping." So off we went. (We live on a dead end street and the pinata was at the end of the Cul De Sac in the grassy.)
First we went to Fairy Garden. I asked a neighbor for use of her front yard. I put pinwheels around a small squared off portion of the year. Inside that I put fake flowers and hid fairies among the flowers. I bought those at the dollar store. I hid footballs for the boys. Then when we got there I flipped the map over and on the back was a pic of backpack with things around it that were in the bag (Dora stickers whistles fruit snacks magnifying glass and a band aid). I asked "Does anyone see anything that will make the fairies look bigger. Of course they said "Magnifying Glass". They took them out to "search" for the fairies and everyone got to put a fairy or football in their backpack.
Off to Sand Trap Lake in another neighborsyard. Then Swiper (also known as Husband)came. He just had blue gardening gloves on and a bandana with holes for eyes cut out. He grabbed the map and threw it saying "You'll never find it now!" The kids chased after the map and grabbed it. They we SO excited. Then at Sand Trap Lake I had a Kiddie Pool with frogs in it covered by sand. We found whistles in our backpack to scare the alligators (unbeknowst to them there weren't any) in Sand trap Lake. Each child had to "save" one frog. So they did that. Then Swiper came again and the kids all yelled again. Swiper was stopped by them and he said his famous "Oh Mannnnn".
We got to the chocolate tree which was just a tree with some Hershey Kisses at the bottom. All the kids grabbed some chocolate. Then they saw the pinata and each child helped to open it by pulling a string. On the way back to the house we sang "We did it we did it yeah!" Just like Dora does. When we got back we all sang and ate cake. Then the kids just played. The parents ate some more and just hung out. At the end I gave each child a balloon and gave them the option of holding on to it or letting it go. Most of the kids let theirs go and it was neat to see all the balloons float off into the sky. It was a great closing activity.
It was such a terrific birthday. I had soooo many compliments. I overheard some people saying they had never been to a party like that before. I have had most of the parents call me and tell me that their kids have been playing "Dora" since the party. I even had some parents jokingly upset because I had "raised the bar". This party took a lot of planning and preparation. I really tried to think of the small details. The total cost was about $300 for two kids. Please feel free to Email me I can send pics too. This party was most enjoyed by the 3-4 year olds. I think having a smaller group may be more enjoyable on the adventure (and cheaper!!) But since we had a two for one party the group just got big…
For the Thank you notes I will include a pic of each child behind the Dora poster… Good Luck and thanks to this site for many many GREAT ideas! "
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