From learning to be independent, bonding with their peers, and teaching them to be flexible with their routines, sleepovers are more important to childhood development than you’d first realise. Sleepovers are particularly popular amongst tween girls (ages 9 – 12 years) And while they may start off as just being for a birthday treat, once they realise how fun they are, they will almost certainly become more frequent. After all, a sleepover with your BFFs is every girls dream. So, to help make the night as special as possible, we’ve put together 5 sleepover themes for tween girls to help inspire you.
A musicals themed sleepover offers a wealth of different ideas for your tweens to keep themselves busy throughout the night. Just remember to make sure the rest of the household has plenty of ear plugs as there is bound to be some singing going on!
If the guests really want to go for it, you could ask them to come dressed as their favourite character from a musical. Obviously, no musicals sleepover would be complete without watching a musical or two. Check with your daughter which ones she’d like to watch and make sure they’re age appropriate. Some of the greats include School of Rock, Matilda the Musical, and of course The Greatest Showman.
You may also be able to find sing along versions, which include the lyrics of the song on the screen. But if not, you could always print out a few lyric sheets to hand out. And of course, don’t forget the microphones!
When everyone’s all sung out, settle things down by dimming the lights, getting them to change into their nightwear, bring out the popcorn and watch something a bit more chill.
One of the most popular sleepover themes for tween girls is a spa style pamper party. They love it! There are so many different activities you can do with this particular theme, so it’s probably a good idea to get your daughter involved in what she’d like to do on the night.
To help create an authentic spa experience, ask each guest to bring their slippers and dressing gowns. You can get eye masks and towelling hair bands fairly cheap from places like Amazon or Shein, which is a nice extra touch and means they have something to take home with them as a memento of the night.
Here are some things they can do at a spa sleepover:
- Nail varnish roulette – Choose 6 different colours of nail varnish and label them with the numbers 1-6. Get each guest to roll a dice and whatever number it lands on is the nail varnish they will use. They can then take it in turns to give each other a manicure and pedicure.
- Face masks – Either buy some sheet masks or peel off masks for them to use (make sure they are suitable for children and sensitive skin), or you could get them to make homemade natural face masks using ingredients such as avocado, natural yogurt, honey, oats etc.
- Lip balm creation – You’ll need to get some small, lidded pots (mini jam jars work well or you can buy them cheaply off of Amazon), Vaseline, food colourings and flavourings. Simply mix the Vaseline with a few drops of colouring and their chosen flavouring, then scoop it into a pot for their own homemade lip balm.
Other activities they could do include singing into hairbrushes, taking before and after makeover selfies, colouring sheets of face outlines that they can use to colour in make-up designs, and yoga to help bliss them out and hopefully make them very sleepy!
If you can handle a bunch of tween girls making a mess in your kitchen, then a baking themed sleepover party is a brilliant option. The most important thing you need to do before the sleepover is to check whether any of the guests have any food allergies. You can then tailor the recipes around this to make sure everyone is safe and that everyone can be involved.
It’s probably a good idea to decide on a food theme for the sleepover, so for example it could be a pizza making party, or they could make and decorate cupcakes etc. Make sure you have plenty of all the ingredients you need, as well as a few spares in case of any spills, which let’s face it there are bound to be some!
Other activities could include:
- Decorating an apron with fabric pens
- Colouring paper chefs hats to wear
- Designing a recipe
- Blind taste test challenge
- Watching Junior Bake Off together
The benefit of this sleepover theme is not only does it keep them busy, but it also sorts out what they’re eating too. And any leftovers can be taken home and shared with their parents the next day.
Board Game Marathon
If your daughter is into playing board games, this sleepover theme is perfect. It’s a good idea to ask her sleepover guests to each bring their favourite game with them, that way you should ensure a good mix of games that everyone will enjoy playing.
Most kids get bored of longer games like Monopoly, plus games like that can often end in arguments, which is the last thing you want to be dealing with. Instead, stick with games that are fairly short but lots of fun.
Here are a few ideas to help inspire you:
- Hungry Hippos
- Screwball Scramble
You can also get larger outdoor versions of games like Jenga, Twister, Pass the Pigs, and Bananagrams, which are always a lot of fun and great when the weather is nice.
Another idea is to buy an escape room in a box. These are great fun, and get kids working together as a team. Just make sure you check that the game is age appropriate both in terms of content and difficulty levels.
One of the classic sleepover themes for tween girls is the camp out. And even though it’s called camping ‘out’ you could also choose to do this theme inside, which is good to know especially if the weather’s not looking great.
If camping outside, you will need to pitch a tent that is big enough to sleep all of the sleepover guests. If you only have a small tent, it’s probably best to limit the guest list accordingly. Make sure you ask the guests to bring their own sleeping bag, roll mat, and pillow, plus it’s also a good idea for them to bring an extra layer of warm clothes as it can get cold at night. Decorate the inside of the tent with fairy lights, cushions, snuggly blankets, and make sure everyone has a wind-up torch for any middle of the night toilet trips.
If camping inside, you can create the atmosphere of being outdoors by sticking glow in the dark stars on the ceiling and creating a pretend campfire by piling mini flashlights together and stacking sticks up around them. If you have space in your house to put up a tent, by all means do that, but laying out sleeping bags and pillows so that the tired tweens can sleep ‘under the stars’ is just as fun.
No matter whether they’re inside or outside, here are some fun camping themed activities they can do during the sleepover:
- Make s’mores
- Star spotting
- Make dream catchers
- Shadow puppets
- Sleeping bag race
Whatever theme you choose for your tween daughter’s sleepover it’s probably a good idea to run it past her first. Those tween girls know exactly what they want, and what’s in fashion one week can be completely out the next. Most importantly it’s about them having fun with their friends and creating memories that will stay with them forever. Hopefully these sleepover theme ideas will help you create a sleepover your tween daughter will never forget.