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Birthday Decoder Wheel Activity

Birthday | Decoder Wheel Activities | DIY Craft Projects

Can you crack the code?? Solve these fun birthday-themed riddles with the birthday decoder wheel! This fun cipher wheel can also be used to crack codes you create! A fun way to celebrate a special occasion! 

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DIY birthday riddle written in code lays next to a colorful decoder wheel, crayons and a happy birthday sign.

Hello Crafty Friends! I’m back today with a brand new decoder wheel printable activity – this time birthday-themed! My new birthday decoder wheel is a fun activity to help kids celebrate their special day!

Solve birthday-themed riddles with the cipher wheel or make up your own secret birthday message for them to decode. Use the decoder wheel in a birthday escape room, to find a hidden gift or to decode a special message. 

Kids will use the secret decoder wheel, or cipher wheel, to solve the riddles or clues. I have created 20 birthday riddles each with their own key which tells kids how to set their decoder wheel before solving. For example, the key may say “B is BALLOON. The kids would set their wheel so the B and the balloon picture are lined up, then solve the puzzle. 

I love creating decoder wheels and this new birthday-themed decoder wheel joins my collection of Secret Decoder Wheel activities. I first created these when my kids were preschoolers. I made a Christmas-themed wheel they used to find the location of a hidden gift on Christmas day. It was so much fun I started creating new ones over the years, all featuring my handmade illustrations.

This birthday wheel features doodles I drew on my iPad including birthday favorites like a cake, crown, confetti, disco ball, present and candle. 

Happy Birthday decoder wheel project.

Decoder wheels are a simple activity to prepare. Simply print the activity and assemble the decoder wheel using a brad. I love creating decoder wheels for holidays and different seasons.

Check out my other printable decoder wheels!

How to Make a Birthday Decoder Wheel

Supplies Needed:

  • Birthday Time Decoder Wheel Printables are available in my Shop. It includes the wheel, 20 themed riddles and an editable PowerPoint where you can easily create your own messages to decode. 
  • White cardstock for decoder wheel
  • Scissors
  • Push pin
  • Brad – I find the mini brads work a little better, but any brad will work
  • Paper trimmer – handy for cutting out riddles

How to Assemble the Decoder Wheel

The decoder wheel is simple to assemble. Start by printing the wheel on white cardstock then carefully cut out both circles with a scissors. Layer the circles together, with the smaller one on top, and poke a hole in the center of both using a push pin.

Attach the layers together with a brad in the center. The wheel should rotate easily. I have the wheel turns better when using a smaller brad than a regular-sized one so I usually grab a container of tiny brads at my locals Michaels.

Print the riddles and kids are ready to solve them. The riddles come 2 on a page or you can print them a bit smaller with 4 fitting on each page. If little ones are trying these out on their own, I recommend using the larger riddles since the symbols are easier to read. 

An assembled decoder wheel attached with a brad.

How to Use a Decoder Wheel

For each riddle the “KEY” will tell you how to set the wheel. For example if the riddle’s KEY is “B is for BALLOON”, kids must spin the wheel until the balloon lines up with the letter “B”. Then they are ready to solve.

Make sure to check the key for each riddle as each one is different. For younger kids, it may be helpful to cut apart the riddles to help them remember to change their wheel to a new key.

Birthday riddles written in code and a colorful cipher wheel.

How to Create Your Own Coded Messages

My decoder wheels are a reader favorite and I have had lots of requests to make an editable version so you can write your own secret message for kids to solves. The editable PowerPoint allows you the opportunity to create your own message!

All of the symbols, along with several pre-made keys, are ready for you to create your own message. I have even started a birthday message for you on one of the slides. Copy and paste the images to write your own message. Whether you are writing a secret message for your kids, classroom or to use in a home-made escape room, the PowerPoint will allow you to really get creative!

Birthday decoder wheel in PowerPoint being edited to create personalized message.Where to Download the Files

  1. The Birthday Decoder Wheel is available in my Etsy shop. The listing includes digital files for the decoder wheel, 20 birthday-themed riddles and an editable PowerPoint file. 

More Fun Decoder Wheels

View my collection of decoder wheels on my blog or in my Etsy shop! I hope you will give them a try and see if the kids in your life enjoy them as much as mine do! :) 

Birthday riddles written in code and a colorful cipher wheel.

Happy Crafting! -Kim

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