Fun Things to Do for Birthdays With Trains

by Karen Sheviak

If you have a child who's interested in trains, it's only a matter of time before he'll want a birthday party with a train theme. Fortunately, there are lots of activities related to this theme. Choose ideas that are creative and offer some physical challenges, too, to keep the kids enthusiastic at the party.

Shoebox Train

Get a bunch of plain shoeboxes and let the kids decorate them to make a train. Offer crayons, stickers, paper circles for wheels and squares for windows. When the kids are done, punch a hole in the front and back of each shoebox and tie the "train" together with string. At the end of the party, each child can take home her own train car creation.

Train Coal Toss

Tape a large cardboard box closed and cut a hole in the top large enough to throw a bean bag through (the younger the children, the larger the hole should be). Purchase black bean bags to resemble coal, or sew them yourself by using black felt and filling them with rice or dried beans. The children can then take turns trying to throw the bean bags into the hole to resemble throwing coal into a train's coal box.

Pin the Caboose on the Train

Before the birthday party, draw a train on a large piece of construction paper, leaving off the caboose and making the cars any color except red. Draw red cabooses on another sheet of paper and cut them out, ensuring there are enough for each child. At the party, spin each child around and let him try to tape the caboose onto the picture as close as possible to the end of the train. Whoever gets it closest wins.

Red Light, Green Light

Each child can hold a toy train car, and the engineer holds two colored pictures of train signals, one red, one green. The engineer stands at one end of the room and the children with the trains at the other end. When the engineer holds up the green light, the trains can move; when she holds up the red light, they must stop. Anyone who moves after the red light goes up must return to the start. The first train to reach the engineer wins.

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