Bargain Party Fit for a Pharaoh

by Stephanie Olsen

After buying all the presents deemed necessary for your nearly six year old, who has money for a theme birthday?

A quick web search provides several thousand sites and a great many more ideas for budget (and not so budget) party motifs and games, the most intriguing being Egyptian-based complete with mummy-wrap (each child using a roll of toilet paper) and "pin a pyramid on Egypt" game (outline the shape of Egypt in chalk on the playroom wall and have the guests cut triangle shapes and fill them in with rectangles). The invitation idea alone, addressed to all those budding archeologists, is worth a peek even if you're not a big hieroglyph fan.

Materials needed to create other games, decorations and activities are easily obtained and some are dirt cheap because they're, well, dirt. You'll need sand and various homemade "artifacts" for a dig (boiled and baked chicken bones plus homemade playdough, baked or just hardened, and not necessarily painted), sugar cubes and egg whites to build pyramids, and pretty rocks as party favors found only by individual maps of either your garden or living room, depending on the weather.

We targeted this party towards my own daughter's homeschooled personal interest, which first developed when playing a Magic Schoolbus game online called "Ancient Egypt". This can be an economical and educational eggs-travaganza (sorry) for anyone.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I've got to go outside and start digging up some dinosaur fossils for next year.

Stephanie Olsen, published writer, homeschooling mother of two and ESL teacher currently residing in Europe.

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