Tips for Hosting a Play Date for Toddlers
Some moms (and dads) feel extremely passionate about play dates – wanting their child to socialize with other children the same age. When my children were very young, I personally loved play dates. Just a few friends getting together, not judging, but allowing our children time together and for us moms to catch up over a cup of tea.
That’s what play dates should be – fun for kids and fun for their parents.
If you are unsure what is involved with hosting a play date then continue reading – we can help!
How to Host
If you’re planning to invite a playmate for your child to your house, you might want to keep a few things in mind to ensure things go smoothly, or at least as smoothly as anything involving very small children can expect to go.
- Be specific when sending out invitation to friends – set a time and date.
- Discuss the issue of siblings beforehand. If your other children will be around, just let the playmate’s mom know that. If your guest has brother and sisters, you should be clear about whether or not they are invited.
- Be clear on whether you expect the mom to stay or not. The play dates my kids went to, were a great time for Moms to catch up too. If you’re okay with the toddler being dropped off for a few hours, let the mom know that.
- Let your friends know what you will have available as far as drinks and light refreshments. Do not add extra pressure to yourself by cooking lunch for everyone!
- Don’t stress over housework – chances are the little ones will destroy a nicely cleaned and straightened home!
- Don’t spend the hour or two of a play date trying to straighten the mess the tots are creating. Just before the end of the play date, encourage everyone to clean up.
- Offer a variety of age-appropriate toys.
- Put away any precious item that you know your toddler will not want to share, pack it away to avoid the tantrum.
Remember to keep in mind that this is just a play date. If it’s stressful or no fun, you don’t ever have to do it again. If it’s something you and your child enjoy, get the calendar out and set a new date to get together with your friends.