High School Music Themed Children’s Birthday Parties on a Budget

First let me make a statement. I do not like High School Musical. I simply don’t understand it. Did the kids in your high school burst into song at the drop of a hat? Nope, mine neither. However, I guess it is every generation’s duty not to understand what their children see in certain music or movies and my children certainly love High School Musical.

The trials and tribulations of Troy, Gabriella, Chad, Sharpie and the rest of the crew are not only The Disney Channel’s most successful movie of all time, but it has also emerged as one of the most sought after children’s party themesout there and even though I knew it was coming, the day my daughter told me that she wanted a HSM theme party was a day that sent me into a panic. “How” I thought,” can I arrange a High School Musical party without spending a fortune!?”. What I quickly found out is that whilst there is thousands of pre made HSM party packs for sale everywhere you look, there is a much more affordable and fun way to give your child the party she deserves without breaking the bank. What did I do? I simply made my own…. and here’s how!

Step One – The Invitations.

A children’s party‘s theme is proclaimed when the invitations arrive, so this is the first key area you will need to get right to ensure your guests know the theme in advance.. Basketball themed invites work great for the boys and star cut-outs are perfect for the girls. You can create your own quite easily or find themes invites for free on many children’s parties websites including my own website which you can find in the resource box.

Step Two – Setting The Stage…. Literally

If you are as familiar with the Wildcats as I am, you will already know the three main areas you will need to recreate – the cafeteria for all the dining, the stage for all your singing and dancing games and finally the basketball court for all other games.

Setting up the cafeteria is a breeze! All you need is a dining room or area where you can put up a couple of trestle tables. Since HSM is so popular these days you can pick up themed cups, plates and napkins in any party supplies shop, but for authenticity, go with plain cutlery and plates as well as plastic trays to create that high school cafeteria feel. Print out some banners saying things like “Go Wildcats!” that can be hung around the room and make a notice board with some notices about auditions and basketball and your party will soon start to get that HSM feel.

Creating the stage area is a lot easier than you may think. The first thing you will need (and this, I have been told, is a requirement folks) is a red carpet which can easily be made from some inexpensive red fabric, readily available from most department stores. Once the red carpet is in place and you have finished testing it out yourself whilst daydreaming about walking into a movie premiere, you will need to work on the stage and background itself. Create some cardboard stars and decorate them with gold and silver paint and glitter before hanging them from the ceiling. For that extra touch of fun, write each of the guest’s names on the stars. Create stage lighting by tipping two lamps with their shades removed at an angle and covering them with some black cloth – just ensure that the cloth isn’t touching the bulb for obvious reasons. Want to go a step further?

Creating a mini basketball court can be just as simple, regardless of whether it’s indoors or outdoors. Basketball hoops for both indoors and outdoors can be purchased quite cheaply from most major toy stores in Ireland and along with some banners with HSM slogans such as “Go Cats!” which can be printed from your computer are pretty much the only things you need to set up your HSM basketball court set.

Step Three – Cafeteria Food They Will Love!

A High School Musical party menu can be quite simple, cheap and easy to make. Remember we are going for the authentic HSM theme so cafeteria food is a must! Burgers, hot dogs, chips and cocktail sausages work well and when served on a plastic tray with some veg, fruit and a carton of milk or juice offer your cafeteria a genuine HSM feel.

Your cake choices are endless! There are many fantastic cake makers in Ireland who can create a custom built HSM themed cake or you can buy premade High School Musical cakes in many supermarket confectionery aisles.

Step Four – We’re all in this together…………

If your child loves High School Musical and has requested the theme, chances are you will have bolstered the Disney Corporations coffers with all the cds and DVDs that are out there at some stage. This is actually a good thing as we are going to use all of these cds for our party games!

A great game to play is Name That Song. Line all of the children up and play the first 2 to 3 seconds of a HSM song. The first child to name that song gets to take a step forward and the first child past the finishing line wins a small prize! It is okay to repeat the same songs – just skip to a different part.

Another great game to play is High School Musical chairs. The only difference with this game and the traditional musical chairs game is that the children must dance around the chairs to the HSM soundtrack. Children raise their hands to guess what song has been played.

A High School Musical Dance Party can be another fantastic crowd pleaser. Arrange the guests into small groups and give them 5 minutes each to choreograph their own routines to the songs. Turn the game into a contest by having all the guests vote for their favorite!

Got a games console in the house? If you do not already own one, you can easily rent one for the night from most major DVD rental stores and couple with a singing game and your stage set up, they can give your guests the chance to put on their very own High School Musical!

Done with the stage area? Then take your party to the basketball court where all of the guests can play games such as free shot throwing where the guests each take a shot from a certain distance. Those who make the basket must step back one step and try again until the last person has been eliminated. For the children who are eliminated, their task is to create a bull horn out of colored cardboard and try to put the remaining contestants off with their chanting!

So there you have it. A simple, easy to organize High School Musical themed party that won’t break the bank! Just try not hearing those songs in your sleep that night though!

Discover the Sounds of Tuscany On School Music Trips

School music trips are a great way to encourage students to learn more about their subject and appreciate the many different styles that dominate the music scene throughout the world. There are some wonderful destinations for school music trips, from Tallinn to Munich to New York to Normandy, and each one is special. Music is a subject that particularly lends itself to learning outside the classroom; school music trips give students the opportunity to perform in classic venues, develop their talent, and discover new confidence.

What Students Can Achieve On School Music Trips

The idea of these trips is to expose students to as much as possible, offering them the chance to broaden their knowledge and develop new skills in a performance context. Along the way they will also learn to appreciate the importance of music in different communities and the significance of it through the ages. Music in society can be explored and the lives and works of famous musicians, singers, composers and performers can be appreciated.

Students will also revel in the opportunity to travel and the excitement of being immersed in a new culture. Students often grow in confidence personally and socially and team work and group dynamics are usually affected in a positive way.

The Musical Soul Of Tuscany

Tuscany is arguably one of Italy’s most beautiful regions, and the music scene certainly reflects the beautiful scenery, the elegant architecture and the stunning colours and light. Florence, the capital of the region, is home to one of the most stunning cathedrals in the world. Choral groups may be invited to sing at mass in the cathedral, and they can get a real appreciation of the acoustics of this wonderful building. For a more personal performance, some travel companies have access to the Church of St Maria de Ricci, where full-length performances can be practiced. Pisa cathedral and the Basilica in Montecatini are also popular venues for choirs.

Italy is famous for its vibrant music festivals and summer brings many, both small and large. With hundreds of outdoor performances held in town squares and other venues, students are often invited to participate – this is a great way to get them singing and playing in a much more informal and relaxed atmosphere.

School music trips to Florence can also combine visits to some of the country’s most famous cities. Pisa and Siena make for wonderful day trips, and the smaller hill top towns of San Gimignano, Pienza, San Quirico and Montepulciano are also well worth a visit.

Tuscany is famous as the home of many a musical legend, including the small town of Lucca, which was home to the master composer Puccini. In Lucca, students can attend a concert and listen to a collection of pieces that Puccini composed, visit the house in which he was born, and learn more about the life of one of Tuscany’s most famous residents.

Close to the UK, Tuscany is easily accessible and is the perfect venue for an exciting and fascinating trip for young musicians.

High School Musical Party Games

Planning a kids birthday party can be a stressful time for any mother. What them to have, who to invite, what food to buy and what entertainment to have. Also when you have a theme for a party everything in the party has to fit in with that theme, the guests, the food, the room and even the games. It is finding games that fit in with a party theme I find the most difficult as you want to be original but also to stay within your theme and make sure all the guests have a good time! A High School Musical party is one of my favourite parties and here are some of the High School Musical party games that I came up with when hosting a kids party earlier this year.

Top Five High School Musical Party Games

1. Karaoke – Use a High School Musical Karaoke CD and get one parent to act as Mrs Darbus while the guests take it in turns, on their own or in groups, to audition for a part of Gabriella, Troy, Ryan and Sharpay by singing a song from the film. Reward the winners with their very own High School Musical microphones.

2. Cheerleading – Put the girls in the party into groups and play the Get’cha Head in the Game song from the movie and see which group comes up with the best cheerleading moves. A good prize for this game is a set of pom poms for each girl in the winning group.

3. Basketball – If you have outside space and some boys coming to the party try to get hold of a basketball hoop and let them battle it out. Let them come up with their own team names, which the cheerleaders can devise a chant to, and award the winners with some Wildcat prizes.

4. Scholastic Decathlon – Divide the kids into teams for this trivia game. Make up your own questions from the film or use the High School Musical DVD game or the High School Musical party game with trivia cards included. Award the winners with some High School Musical notebooks and pens.

5. Pin the kiss on Troy – Use a large poster of Troy and make a cardboard kiss so that each child can be blindfolded and try and pin the kiss on Troy’s lips. The winner can receive a poster of their own to take home.

You can also purchase a wide range of High School Musical party games such as pinatas, board games, card games and Singstar games. Singstar games can be used on either the Nintendo Wii or PlayStation 2 and can be great fun. The kids will love singing along with their favorite songs, if you have them try incorporating these into the Karaoke competition.