How can parents make New Year’s Eve special for little kids?
If your tiny merrymakers aren’t ready to brave midnight, consider a noon countdown! With this option, you avoid keeping kids up past their bedtime while still allowing them to join the festivities.
Alternatively, if your goal is to stay awake until midnight as a family, we know you need lots of activities to stir up enthusiasm throughout the evening.
Whether you’re planning to stay up until the ball drops or opting for a midday countdown, this blog is packed with fun ideas and resources for parents with children in preschool to 3rd grade:
Assemble spark-free paper fireworks (1st Grade)
No need to handle the hot stuff! Include little ones in the New Year’s Eve fun while being safe by printing this spark-free paper firework sheet!
They will cut out the yellow and blue squares, glue them together, and craft their very own dazzling sparkler that they can shake to simulate a firework!
This activity provides a heat-free alternative to traditional fireworks, making it suitable for young ages.
Dress up with masks and party hats (1st – 3rd Grade)
Embrace the spirit of celebration by dressing the part!
First, kids can choose among a variety of printable masks, from gold and purple New Year’s classics to creative animal-themed options. Because there are two versions of each worksheet, they can either color their own or print a pre-colored alternative. Watch as they turn your living room into a masquerade party!
Next, they can spend the early evening rolling and pasting party hats for the whole family.
Bonus Option: Consider assembling a craft station with markers, stickers, and gems so they can personalize each creation.
Craft Recycled Noisemakers (Preschool – Kindergarten)
Make some New Year’s noise!
No need for store-bought party favors: with household items and little innovation, kids can assemble noisemakers at home! Gather recycled materials such as toilet paper rolls, paper plates, dried beans, and pasta.
Preschoolers and kindergarteners will love getting hands-on with this eco-friendly project while they wait for the clock to strike twelve.
Bonus Option: Have an at-home scavenger hunt! Engage your child in reusing, recycling, and thinking outside the box as they look for worn or used items to add to their noisemakers.
Welcome guests with a festive banner (Preschool – Kindergarten)
Create a festive atmosphere in your home by assembling this New Year’s banner together. It’s ready to print, color, and hang up in your home—all you need are crayons and string!
Color as you count down (Preschool – 1st Grade)
Using a New Year’s Countdown worksheet, challenge your child to fill in the missing numbers on the balloons from 10 to 1, and then color them all in before the ball drops!
Set goals for 2024 (Preschool – 5th Grade)
Take a moment to reflect on the past year and set goals for 2024. For the littlest kids, we recommend utilizing a visual planning sheet that has them illustrate their reflections and resolutions.
Children in preschool through first grade can also have an imaginary “interview” with the year 2024. The worksheet contains age-appropriate discussion questions about dreams, wishes, and imaginary animals.
If older siblings want to complete one, too, we have a more detailed version of the same 2024 “interview” worksheet, designed with 3rd-5th grade learners in mind.
Whether you opt for a daytime countdown or venture into the night, these activities can help parents include young children in the fun on New Year’s Eve.
For more, you can click through the full list of 70+ New Year’s activities in our Learning Library. As always, Basic members can download a limited number for free, and Premium members get unlimited access.
We hope you have an exciting and safe New Year with your family. Happy New Year from Education.com!
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