Birthday Party Ideas for a 12-Year-Old

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Twelve-year-old birthday parties should be planned according to the maturity and personality of your child. Some tweens might want a huge pre-teen bash, while others might want a low-key party with a few close friends. Talk to your 12-year-old about what she’d like and invite her to plan the party with you, within a predetermined budget.

Locations

Some 12-year-olds want more freedom as they are one year away from being a teen. Others might want a birthday party similar to the parties they’ve enjoyed in the past. If your tween wants a more grown-up birthday celebration, consider hosting the party at the movie theater, bowling alley, mall, amusement park or other public place where you can drop the kids off or hang out in a separate area than they do. Parties held at your home should include more privacy for the tweens as well.

Themes

Incorporate a theme or basic idea into the party planning to keep the invitations, decorations, activities and favors all related. Popular video games, bands, TV shows or sports can serve as a theme. A wild west theme can include dressing up and show downs. Magic parties can include a performer who can teach the kids a few magic tricks and let them perform for each other. Spa parties work for tween girls who want to be more grown-up. Outer space themed parties can include a trip to a space museum or camping under the stars. Plan a backward party; invite your guests to wear their clothing backward.

Activities

Bowling, skating and watching movies are some easy activities for a tween’s birthday party. Activities that relate to the theme of the party work as well. Have relay races where the tweens have to go through the course backward for a backward party. Include a scavenger hunt or treasure hunt for a pirate party. Give the tweens manicures and facials for a spa party. Separate the kids into teams and give them each a magic kit for a magic party. Let the tweens perform their tricks for each other.

Favors

Give each guest a favor bag filled with goodies related to the theme of the party, if possible. A pencil and notebook with a stars-and-planets design work for a space party. Candy works for any theme. Put nail polish into a small cosmetic bag for a spa party.

Incorporate an activity that doubles as the favor party. Give each guest a model car or plane kit and let them put it together. Have the tweens make jewelry, design T-shirts or paint ceramic figures.

Considerations

Twelve-year-old birthday parties can last a few hours or an entire weekend, depending on how long you want to be responsible for the group of tweens. Allow your 12-year-old and his friends a relative amount of privacy while still being present to keep things safe and age-appropriate, particularly for coed parties.

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