Remember, remember the fifth of November. Who doesn’t enjoy bonfire night? Whether it’s the community bonfires, the brilliant firework displays or delicious themed foods like bonfire toffee – there’s something for all the family!
For younger children who won’t necessarily understand the fun of bonfire night straight away, you can introduce them to plenty of activities so they get excited. You could even make them a yearly tradition with your toddler so that they start building their excitement before the big night.
Here are some of our favourite bonfire night activities that are perfect for toddlers, from taking your dolls pram for a stroll and watching a fireworks display to making bonfire cupcakes!
1 – Fireworks in a jar
There’s no better way to get the little ones excited about fireworks and Guy Fawkes night than showing them what they can expect! Rather than annoying your neighbours by setting the real thing off before the big night, why not create safe but impressive indoor fireworks that your toddler can help you create?
What you’ll need:
- An empty glass jar
- A bowl
- A fork
- Cooking oil (any kind)
- Paper towels
- Food colouring (any colours)
To make fireworks in a jar, start by filling your empty jar with water until it is around ¾ full. Put this to one side and find your bowl, oil and food colouring. Have your toddler add 3 tablespoons of oil into the bowl and a few drops of the food colouring. Use as many colours as you want to create a colourful scene! Stir this up with your fork to break the food colouring up into smaller balls – it won’t mix in with the oil.
Next, it’s time to enjoy your indoor fireworks show to celebrate bonfire night! Carefully pour the oil into your jar of water and watch in amazement as the droplets of the colour shoot down into the water.
2 – Make bonfire toffee
What’s bonfire night without bonfire toffee? This delicious, sticky-sweet treat is a traditional bonfire staple and we think that every bonfire night has to have it. It’s not that hard to make, either!
What you’ll need:
- Black treacle
- Golden syrup
- Dark brown sugar
- Cream of tartar
- Hot water
This bonfire toffee will whisk you back to your childhood and create memories for your little one too. It’s also a great excuse to eat! They could even share their toffee with their favourite dolls at a bonfire themed tea party.
Take a look at the BBC Good Food bonfire toffee recipe to make the sweet treat at home this Autumn.
3 – Bake bonfire cupcakes
If you’re not a fan of bonfire toffee or simply want other bonfire-related sweet treats, there’s nothing better than making themed cupcakes! They’re easy to make and fun to decorate with your children, making it a great activity for bonfire night.
Create your cupcakes like you usually would with whichever flavours and colours you love. Then make your buttercream icing, add food colouring and pipe your “bonfire” on top!
Finish your cupcake masterpieces with matchmakers or chocolate fingers as the logs of the fire. These tasty bonfire cupcakes are for all the family, and your little ones can get involved with making them.
Take a look at this Tastemade Bonfire Cupcake recipe to find out how to make your cupcakes.
4 – Straw sparklers & chocolate finger sparklers
Real sparklers are great fun, but it can be scary for parents when toddlers are involved, especially as they can be very dangerous. Your little one doesn’t have to be in danger to enjoy sparklers.
It’s easy to make your own child-friendly sparklers using reusable straws or chocolate fingers. You won’t need many things to take part in these creative activities either!
It’s easy to make these straw sparklers which are perfect for enjoying bonfire night. You’ll need the following to create your own toddler-friendly ‘sparklers’ which can be used all year round:
- Colour cellophane sheets or colour paper
- Cellotape or glue
- Reusable straws
- Scissors (for the adults to use)
Cut a sheet of foil to the same size as your cellophane sheets or paper. Put the foil between two sheets of cellophane or paper and then fold all layers in half. Starting at the open end, start to carefully cut strips down towards the fold line without cutting through.
Find your straw and wrap the bottom of the sheets tightly around it. You can use cellotape to secure this or glue, but remember that glue will take longer to dry! Once secure, gently fold the strips out to bring your straw sparkler to life. You could even make a sparkler for your child’s favourite interactive doll as well!
Chocolate finger sparklers
Another way to create safe sparklers is using chocolate fingers. This is one of our edible favourites for bonfire night and is easy to prepare! You’ll need the following to make your edible sparklers:
- Chocolate fingers
- Bowl of hot water
Simply take some chocolate fingers, melt the end in a bowl of hot water and dip in a bowl of sprinkles – it really is that easy. Simple but effective is sometimes the best way!
Alternatively, if you want to be a little more adventurous, you could melt some white chocolate and dip the end of the chocolate fingers in before the sprinkles to give the illusion the end is glowing white-hot like a real sparkler.
5 – Bonfire rockets
Fireworks are an essential part of bonfire night but are even more dangerous than sparklers, so it’s no wonder parents with little ones may be put off buying their own. Instead, why not leave the real thing to others and watch out of your window while playing with your homemade bonfire rockets?
These easy to make paper bonfire rockets can be decorated as your toddler likes, making them as unique as the real thing!
What you’ll need:
- A4 card
- Self-adhesive foam
- Cord or string
- Tinsel pipe cleaners
Get your A4 sheet of card and roll this into a cylinder. Cut your self-adhesive foam to size and wrap this around the tube that you’ve created to add some colour. Now it’s time to decorate the tube! You can cut strips of foam as well as shapes and stick them to the sides.
If you want to display your bonfire rockets, you’ll need to attach some cord or string. The best way to do this is to use a self-adhesive foam shape or strip to stick this down.
The final step is to make the head and base of the rocket. Cut a large semi-circle shape out of foam and carefully cut from the outer edge to the centre once. Roll your circle up to form a cone shape and attach it to the top of the rocket.
Cut another circle from the foam, using the tube to measure the correct diameter. Make some shapes with your tinsel pipe cleaners and poke these through the circle. Once done, stick this to the end of the tube and your rocket is complete!
6 – Paint a firework scene
Get your little ones creating their very own fun firework scene on paper – simply using used toilet roll tubes! Painting is one of the best bonfire night crafts to do and is perfect for children who love crafting.
What you’ll need:
- Toilet roll tubes
- Different colours of paint
- Black card or paper
- Old newspapers or table covers
Put those tubes to good use by simply snipping the end of the tube and splaying the cut cardboard out so it looks like an explosion. Dip the end into paint and get your little one to stamp the tube onto some black paper or card to create their very own explosive firework scene!
7 – Pop-up fireworks
Another way to enjoy fireworks indoors safely is to create a pop-up version that can get your kids involved in making their own indoor display. These homemade pop-up fireworks are perfect for a fun bonfire night but can be used on New Year’s Eve as well!
What you’ll need:
- Wooden spoon
- Black card
- As many sparkly crafts as you like!
By attaching the ribbons to the wooden spoon, which is hidden by some decorated card, you can encourage your little one to bounce around and create an energetic firework display – one which every parent and toddler can enjoy.
They could even put their new pop-up firework into their Daisy Chain luxury tote bag when out and about to have a firework display whenever they want!
8 – Watch a fireworks display
One of the best ways to enjoy bonfire night is to watch a fireworks display this November! There are plenty of local fireworks displays you can visit which are a great trip out for the family.
If you’d rather stay at home, you might be able to watch the amazing celebrations from the comfort of your garden. You could make a whole evening of it, decorate your garden and around the house. Your child could even set up their favourite doll or toy in a doll high chair so they can join in too!
Watching a firework display means your little one can take their favourite toddler dolls pram out with them. With the right dolls pram accessories, such as a parasol, rain cover and bag, they’ll be all set for the fun show!
9 – Catherine wheel craft
Add another firework to your indoor toddler-safe display with a Catherine wheel inspired craft! Arts and crafts are a great way to safely celebrate bonfire night and help develop your children’s motor skills.
What you’ll need:
- Coloured card
- Paper fastener
- Lots of glitters, sequins, and anything shiny
Cut a circle out of your card and fold it in half. Cut the semi-circle, but not all the way to the centre. Unfold the card and fold it again the other way to create another semi-circle, making the exact cut you did before.
Unfold your circle and then take each corner and fold it into the centre, holding it in place with a paper fastener. You may need to do this for your little one, but they can decorate it however they wish! They can add glitter, ribbon, sequins and anything else they want to create the perfect Catherine wheel.
10 – Straw-Blown Fireworks
We’ve all done straw paintings before, and it turns out that this technique can produce some pretty impressive firework patterns. This is another fun craft idea and lets your children make the make of bonfire night.
What you’ll need:
- A4 card or paper (black card works really well!)
- Several colours of paint
All you need to do is place your paper or card on a table and place a small blob of paint onto it. Get the straw and blow through it over the paint to spread it out into a fabulous firework!
Simple, easy and not too messy – the perfect painting activity for bonfire night. You could even use glitter paint to add some extra sparkle to your painting.
We hope that you all have a wonderful bonfire night, no matter what your plans are! Wrap up warm, stay safe and most of all, have fun as a family.