A play date can be both very exciting, yet very nerve racking for the host! Of course, all parents want their children to make lots of lovely friends, but many dread the thought of hosting a large play date. To give you a helping hand with this daunting experience, we have created a list of our top tips for hosting the perfect play date!
1.) Set a date with a clear start and finish time
This is important so that everyone attending is clear when the play date is taking part. This way no one will miss out, due to getting the date/time wrong. It will also allow you make sure you have plenty of time to prepare. We recommend the play date lasts around two hours. Any longer than this, then you risk the children becoming restless or tired.
2.) Who to invite
Some play dates involve just the children, but you run the risk of having 10 children running mad around your house. We recommend inviting a parent along with the children, especially when hosting your first play date. This is particularly advisable if the children are little. This is a great opportunity for parents to catch up and share notes too. It is also important to consider how many people you will be inviting. We recommend starting with a maximum of five families, and then you can always invite more the next time.
3.) Don’t drive yourself crazy tidying
If you have 5 children coming round to play, the chances are that the house will get very messy. Decide which area of the house you want the play date to take part in. Some parents find it easier to have a rule saying no one upstairs. We recommend just giving the rooms you’ll be in a quick hoover before your guests arrive and it may be a good idea to move any fragile or precious items away.
4.) Food should be simple
By all means you don’t need to make a sit-down meal, however picky snacks always go down well. Make sure you have some healthy yummy snacks for the children if they are hungry, and maybe some juice to drink. For the adults a cup of tea and a few biscuits will do just fine!
One of the key factors of a play date is the toys/activities you have for the children to do. Make sure you have age appropriate toys out, so there is something for everyone to play with. Have a look at our great range of toys for something a little extra special! If you are worried you can always asks each child to bring their favourite toy that they would like to play with.
6.) Set up an arrival activity
When the children arrive, we would suggest having some games/toys out, for them to play with first. This will help the children all settle in and feel comfortable in the new environment. Have a look at our top 5 things to make and create for some fun ideas!
7.) Have fun!
At the end of the day, kids just love to play. Try not to worry too much. It is exciting getting adults and children together for a couple of hours, so just enjoy the play date!