Whether your kid has Old MacDonald aspirations or wants a big red barn to call her own, a farm party could be just what the tractor ordered. To get you started, we’ve harvested a select crop of activities to enjoy pre- or post-birthday cake. These games, crafts, and pretend play projects will get everybody outside and in the farm spirit.

photo: Brian Dewey via Flickr

1. Animal Round-Up
Here’s where all those little plastic farm animals you’re constantly stepping over will come in handy. Spread hay (you can buy this at a craft supply store) on an old sheet, or in a wagon or even in the yard. Give each party guest their own container—a small bucket works great—and tell all your little farmers that their stock has gotten lose and needs to be “corralled.” Then let them sort, search and gather to their heart’s content!

Rope a Ponyphoto: Are We There Yet?

2. Rope a Pony
Calling all junior cowpokes! With a horse and a hula hoop-turned-lasso, you can set up a roping station that will keep the kids entertained for hours. Head to Are We There Yet for the full scoop.

Milk the Cowphoto: Cupcake Wishes & Birthday Dreams

3. Milk the Cow
You could say this idea from Cupcake Wishes & Birthday Dreams is udderly unique. All you need to teach the littles how to milk a cow is cardboard, some bovine-drawing skills, and a latex glove. Find out more here.

Tractorphoto: The Party Wall

4. Construct a Tricked-Out Tractor
Who knew getting a kiddie-sized John Deere was as easy as hoarding cardboard? We love the creativity of this idea from The Party Wall—and that you can turn this into a group art project for the whole barnyard gang. See more here.

farm binphoto: Crayon Box Chronicles

5. Make Your Own Small Farm World
Have any cereal boxes and popsicle sticks hanging around? Good, because Crayon Box Chronicles is ready to tell you how to use them to create a farm world that’s just the right size for curious kids. It’s the perfect entertainment for sensory and imaginative play. Get all the info you need here.

Muddy Pig Paintingphoto: Kiddie Crafts 365 Blog

6. Muddy Pig Painting
A farm-themed day wouldn’t be complete without some muddy piggies, which is why we love this cute twist on fingerpainting. The kids will get a kick out of getting “muddy” too. Thanks to Kiddie Crafts 365 Blog for the idea!

barn tossphoto: Pinkie for Pink

7. Red Barn Bean Bag Toss
A hand-eye activity with a barnyard twist? We’re in! If you’ve got the carpentry skills, you can build a bean bag board like Pinkie for Pink—or do a similar version with cardboard. Visit Pinkie for Pink to get inspired.

Cow Ring Tossphoto: Adventures in Craftiness

8. Cow Ring Toss
It’s easy to customize the classic ring toss game for a farm-themed affair. Made with soda bottles and felt (which you can opt to glue instead of sewing), this is a great activity for small spaces and younger kids. See more at Adventures in Craftiness.

Paint Filled Egg Artphoto: CleverPatch

9. Paint Filled Egg Art
The Farmer in the Dell would definitely approve of this idea from CleverPatch, and the kids will love getting the go-ahead to get messy and creative. Just fill up eggshells with paint and let ’em fly. Get the full instructions here.

sheep craftphoto: No Time for Flash Cards

10. Simple Sheep Craft
How cute is this little sheep craft from No Time for Flash Cards? There’s no sheering involved with this farm art—just glue, cotton balls, markers, paper, and imagination. Get the whole scoop here.

farm gamephoto: Life Over C’s

11. Farm Animal Game with Free Printable
The preschooler crowd will have a blast with this DIY farm animal game from Life Over C’s. It’s educational, customizable, and even comes with a free printable. Check it out here.

Farmers Market Standphoto: ikat bag

12. Farmers Market Stand
It’s another clever cardboard idea, this time from ikat bag. If you’ve ever visited your local farmers market with the family, you’ve probably talked about where all the delicious food comes from. For a farm party full of imagination, why not build your own market stand and watch the pretend play unfold? Find out more here.

tractor pullphoto: Life with the Clines

13. Tractor Pull
Tractors on your mark, get set, go! When it comes to a farm-themed extravaganza, here’s how to add a little something for the little speedster in your life. Just think of it as racing, tractor-style. Head to Life with the Clines for more.

photo: The Little Sewing Shop

14. Harvest Game
Thanks to The Little Sewing Shop, there’s an easy and fun way to let your little farmers use up some energy. The idea is to run around and gather scattered eggs, veggies and fruit (bonus points if you already have toy food!) and then sort them into baskets. Learn more here.

Which farm-themed activity is your favorite? Share with us in the comment section below!

—Abigail Matsumoto