Are you tired of the same ol’ ho-hum school carnival? Looking for ideas to spice it up and offer something new and different? Look no further. Here are 11 ideas that will help you start thinking outside of the (popcorn) box!
Give your carnival a theme – This is one way to get kids more excited about the carnival. Choose a theme, encourage everyone to dress for the theme, and coordinate your prizes and treats to your theme. Need some ideas to get you started? Here are a few (but the possibilities are endless) Under the Sea, Outer Space, Old West, or Haunted House. (Imagine a gym full of monsters playing halloween inspired games, or everyone dressed in western apparel dancing a good ol’ fashioned hoedown).
Recruit local talent – Invite a local celebrity, such as an athlete, tv personality or politician to make an appearance at your carnival. Depending on who they are, they could perform, talk, pose for photo ops and give autographs.
Ice Cream Sunday Bar- Build-your-own sundays, with a table full of topping options. Decorate the booth with Ice Cream themed items.
Fortune teller booth – a teacher or staff member dresses up and gives silly fortunes, homework predictions, grade guesses, etc.
Cupcake booth- participants decorate their own cupcakes
Staff Auction- Teachers and staff volunteer to be auctioned off for their services; tutoring, janitorial, cooking, etc.
Photo booth – with fun photo props
Sponge Lunge – Instead of an expensive and messy dunk booth, have teachers and staff take turns being a target for soaking wet sponges. A few tarps is all you need to protect your space and the kids have just as much fun (if not more) Kids pay a buck for two throws at the teacher. Trust us, its fun!
Kissing Booth – It’s extra fun if the booth is hidden, in a room, behind a door or curtain. For one ticket or one dollar, they can get a KISS! Give them a Hershey Kiss and a lip sticker or stamp on the cheek. Its a ton of fun, super inexpensive and always a big hit! You’ll soon see all the kids running around with lips on their cheeks.
The Game Game – Ask for donations of used but good quality family board games, card games and puzzles. Or check local thrift stores and discount stores for inexpensive games. Do a game walk (like a cake walk) or game auction. Kids and families get really excited to get a new (used) game. BONUS – it encourages more family time and less video game time.
Pie eating contest- This old fashioned game never loses it’s punch. Everyone loves watching and participating in a pie eating contest. Fill donated pie tinss with whipped topping and pudding. No crust needed. Or have staff and parents donate the pies.
For more carnival ideas checkout out the Ultimate Carnival Planning Guide