6 Thrilling Bounce House Games For A Kids’ Party
by Ann Mifsud
If you’ve made up your mind to treat your kid and friends by setting up a bounce house at your kid’s next party, you’re in for a successful party.
Setting up a bounce house for your kid’s party is in itself a guarantee for lots of fun. These play inflatables give your invitees the chance to play in a safe environment. You can just say, “Hop on, start jumping, don’t stop and just have fun”, or else add some organized bounce house games.
Especially if you are opting for Combos, the kids will have a variety of activities to indulge themselves in, be it a dry or a wet inflatable. Besides, the endless options out there, creatively cater for different ages, so you can easily find a bounce house combo that’s age appropriate for your kid and guests. Read further down for some amazing combo options that tantalize kids of all ages.
If you’re setting up a bounce house, it is a great idea to dedicate some time to more organized play. We’ve listed a few thrilling yet simple bounce house games which involve absolutely zero preparation from your end. You will also find other bounce house activities that require some prior preparation.
Go right away to one of our bounce house games for a kids’ party, by clicking on any of the following…
Why bounce house games for a kids’ party
Planned games come in handy when you notice that the kids have had enough of free play or if you start observing that the situation is getting a bit out of hand with some guests becoming rough or, strange as it may seem, boredom starts creeping in.
Having said that, we wouldn’t recommend that the guests at your kid’s party spend all the time in a bounce house engaging only in structured play.
Besides letting them just have fun, free play also allows you some time and space to sort out other party matters. In any case, make sure there’s an adult around to oversee all that’s happening in the bounce house.
Should you be interested in reading more on bounce house safety precautions, go through our article here. (Coming soon)
Ultimately, it’s your choice if you want to include organized games at your kid’s bounce house party. We have prepared a few good ones for you; some of which need zero preparation.
Games to play on a bounce house that need Zero preparation
Although free play typically characterizes most of the time kids spend playing on a bounce house at a kids’ party, we recommend you have a few structured games up your sleeve. The good thing about these games is that no added equipment is needed and no preparation is required beforehand.
1. Jump Like
This is a good game to be used on a bounce house, especially with younger children.
How to play
- Tell the kids that after you count 1-2-3, you will call out an animal.
- At the mention of that animal, they have to jump imitating it in the best way they can.
- Repeat this as many times as you wish, but do not overstretch it.
Popular animals among young children include frog, kangaroo, rabbit, monkey, cat and dog. More creative ones can be lizard, bird, elephant, horse, fish and snail.
Pro Tip: If you are playing this game with older kids, try getting them to jump like a famous singer, an actor or a family member. Alternatively, challenge them to jump like an Egyptian, a clown, a tight-rope walker, a footballer, a ballerina, a unicyclist or a juggler.
How to play
- Start off by telling the kids to jump freely on the bounce house.
- Let them know that when you shout “freeze”, each kid has to stop bouncing or moving and assume a fixed, static position.
- They are only allowed to start jumping again when you yell “melt”.
- Practise a few times to make sure all kids got the hang of it.
- Then, explain that the last one to freeze, is eliminated.
- Repeat “freezing” and “melting” until the all the kids would have been eliminated, except one.
- The last one in the bounce house wins!
If you want to jazz up this game a bit, add some music. You could play music instead of calling “melt” and stop the music instead of shouting “freeze”. So when the music is playing, all kids jump, but when it stops, they all take a “frozen” position.
This game is fun because kids sometimes find it hard to stand still on a bounce house. So it can be challenging even for older kids.
Pro Tip: Should you be playing this with tweens and see that this is getting too easy for them, add to the challenge by instructing the kids to stand on one leg only when you shout “freeze” or the music stops.
3. Simon Says
This is a popular game with many kids, from the very young ones to tweens.
How to play
- Let the kids know that you are “Simon” and that you are going to tell them what to do, in the following manner, “Simon says… touch your nose”, for example.
- The players have to obey only those instructions that begin with the phrase “Simon says…”
- So, if you shout, “Touch your nose,” without first saying, “Simon says,” the children must not touch their nose.
- The ones that do, are eliminated.
- The last player standing is the winner.
All you need to play this game is some imagination to try and come up with as many unique instructions as you can.
If you’re stuck on instructions you can give, we have prepared a list of funny statements for you to use in the “Simon says…” game in our article 10 Classic Games You Need For An Awesome Kids’ Party.
Games to play on a bounce house that need Some preparation
4. Balloon Toss
A large number of pre-blown balloons of different colors, size 10 or 12 inches.
How to play
- With small kids, just toss the balloons in the bounce house and let the kids jump and toss them in the air.
- If the bounce house rental company allows it, choose balloons that have confetti inside.
You would need to make sure they don’t mind having to vacuum the confetti from any balloons that may pop, so check if they will charge you extra.
With older kids, you could up the challenge by telling them to try popping them by bouncing on them. Since the bounce house is air-filled, this can be pretty challenging. You would need to instruct them not to use their hands to try to pop them.
5. Flag Tag
This game goes down well with kids aged 8 upwards.
Cut 1 foot (30cm) lengths from a roll of streamers. Use different-colored streamers.
How to play
- Give a streamer to each kid and ask them to tuck one end of the streamer into their waistband.
- Then let them loose!
- The goal is for every child to collect as many streamers from other kids as possible, while protecting his or her own.
- When a child’s streamer is pulled out, that kid has to get out (or sit down).
- The winner is the last child still wearing a streamer!
6. Balloon Assault
- Choose 2 colors and pre-inflate 10 balloons of each color.
- Mark the middle of the bounce house with duct tape (always make sure this is fine with the bounce house rental company beforehand).
- Alternatively, ask the kids picture an imaginary line that divides the inflatable in two equal sides.
How to play
- Have the kids line up on opposite sides of the bounce house and assign each side a color (according to the balloons you would have pre-inflated). So for example, one side is blue and the other is red.
- Throw all 20 red and blue balloons in the bounce house; meaning each team will have 10 balloons in their color.
- The kids must toss their balloons to the opponent’s side without crossing the line you would have previously marked.
- At the same time, they must try all they can to keep the other team’s balloons out of their side.
- Give them 2 to 3 minutes and when time is up, count the colored balloons on each side.
- The team that has the least amount of the opponent’s balloons wins.
- Repeat the game for as many times you wish.
What are some great options for bounce house combos?
Young and not so young kids alike, will thoroughly enjoy themselves using an obstacle course bounce house. You can make it as competitive as you like. Assign different times where kids can navigate the bounce house at their own pace and set them up for some competition with timed races. These obstacle bounce houses will surely raise kids’ adrenaline as they push past pillars, climb walls, crawl through tunnels, slide down slides or race each other. These bounce houses range from 40ft to 70ft, so plenty of kids can use it at the same time.
Equally competitive are combo arenas for football, basketball, soccer and other sports. You may need to organize the kids better with these types of sports combos. Having said that, kids can still spend time of free play, jumping around. The good side to these combos is that they are pretty spacious and often come with a safety net, that also serves for parents to monitor their kids playing inside.
Some examples of combos for tweens and teens include the Boxing Ring Bounce House, where kids can have great fun, typically wearing over-sized boxing gloves, with some rentals even offering the possibility of sumo suits! You can make this super exciting by turning into a kids’ boxing tournament.
The sky is the limit with combo bounce houses. Depending on the theme of your kid’s party, you will find the right bounce house at most rental companies.
Final thoughts on bounce house games for a kids’ party
Though having a blast through free play is definitely a great idea on how kids can spend their time on a bounce house at your kid’s party, we do recommend you have a few organized bounce house games up your sleeve.
Bounce house games for a kid’s party do not need to be complicated. As a matter of fact, we have listed a few which need zero preparation from your end. Though these might be your first pick, do consider a game or two that needs some prior preparation from the ones we listed in this article.
Ultimately, having a bounce house at your kid’s party is guaranteed fun. It also promises a party to be remembered, especially if you decide to up your kid’s and guests’ bounce house experience with a combo. There are so many to choose from, but if you get stuck for ideas, we listed a few in this article too. Enjoy!
Hi I'm Ann
Mom to three kids, I am the proud co-founder of Easy Kids' Parties. After a career in journalism and education, I diverted my skills to creating this website, with the aim of helping all those parents out there who wish to organize amazing and memorable parties for their kids but feel overwhelmed at the idea. Discover more...
Easy Kids Parties is a participant in Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. As Amazon Associates we earn from qualifying purchases. We also participate in other affiliate programs. Easy Kids Parties is compensated for referring business to these companies at no extra cost to you.