Home > Children & Friendships > Hosting Successful Play Dates

Hosting Successful Play Dates

By: Beth Morrisey MLIS - Updated: 1 Aug 2013 | comments*Discuss
 
Children Play Dates Invitation

In the past children may have run in and out of each other’s houses all day long but in today’s world official arrangements are much more common. These scheduled activities become the responsibility of the hosting parent so when you decide to invite children over make sure you are set for success. Issue detailed invitations, ask about children’s preferences, have an activity set and expect to serve a snack. Also use these opportunities to teach your child about being a good host.

Issue Detailed Invitations

You don’t need to send formal, written invitations when you decide to host a play date, but you do need to provide certain details to other parents. Be sure to advise:
  • Which child/children in the family are invited.
  • If a parent is invited to stay as well.
  • How many children will be involved in the play date.
  • The names of other child involved.
  • The day or date you have in mind.
  • A starting time and ending time for the play date.
  • What time would be best to serve a snack considering family meal times.
  • That you will be home with the children at all times.
  • If you are not able to be home with the children, the name of the adult in charge.
  • If you will be taking the children out of your home, and to where.
  • Your contact details (telephone, mobile, email) for the other parent.

Ask Children’s Preferences

When you invite other children to your home don’t forget to ask about their preferences so you and your child can plan the play date to their liking. Make sure you enquire about any allergies they may have and activities they are not allowed to participate in. Then ask if there are things the child enjoys doing or something (s)he has wanted to do but has not been able to as yet. If you have an activity in mind, ask the other parent outright if this is acceptable for their child. Never plan to do things that you know are off-limits in another child’s home.

Set An Activity

Rather than just inviting children over and shooing them outside or into the play room, expect to provide both an activity for children to undertake together. Popular play time activities include:
  • Sports games in the back garden.
  • Putting on a play.
  • Enjoying a new board game.
  • Watching a new film, either at home or at a cinema.
  • Craft projects.
  • Putting together a new puzzle.
  • Playing a new computer or video game.
  • Attending a library or book shop story time.
  • Touring a child-friendly museum.
  • Going to the park, playground, beach, etc.

Serve A Snack

Play date snacks tend to be healthy options, though it doesn’t hurt to throw in a treat or two every once and a while. It helps to offer a few choices for children so everyone has a greater chance of enjoying their food. Make sure to find out about children’s food allergies too so you don’t inadvertently serve anything harmful. Typical play date snacks include:
  • Fruit or fruit salad.
  • Sandwiches
  • Crisps
  • Yogurt.
  • Vegetables and dip.
  • Cheese and crackers.
  • Popcorn.
  • Biscuits.
  • Brownies.
  • Milk, water or fruit juice.
  • Hot chocolate as a treat in the colder weather.

Teach Your Child How to Host

When you and your child invite others over to play, expect your child to help with the hosting duties. Show him or her how to take their guests' coats, lead them to the play area, pay attention to what their guests want to do and help serve the snacks when it is time. When their guests leave, your child should thank them for coming over and say goodbye with you. As your child hosts more and more play dates being the host will become second nature.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
Why not be the first to leave a comment for discussion, ask for advice or share your story...

If you'd like to ask a question one of our experts (workload permitting) or a helpful reader hopefully can help you... We also love comments and interesting stories

Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Latest Comments
  • spanked and spanks o
    Re: Smacking and Children
    my mothers smacks r still felt today 12 years later igot from mom on daily basis from age 5 till 16 no less then 1000 slaps on each face…
    21 August 2019
  • Rose Valdez
    Re: Grounding Children
    Well right now I have been grounded for 7and a half months. I still have more time to serve though. I have to finish the 2019 year being…
    17 August 2019
  • Kate
    Re: Questionnaire: Does Your Child Have ADHD?
    I’m having isssues with my son who is 5 almost 6 he seems to switch off when your telling him off he’ll be good…
    4 August 2019
  • Mrstealyogirl
    Re: Grounding Children
    My friends bf has got grounded for like 2 months n tbh I reckon it’s not fair cos they not gonna learn so how can we get him ungrounded
    4 August 2019
  • Suz
    Re: Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD)
    My daughter has displayed ODD since very young. Here in Lancashire we cannot get a diagnosis. Camhs refuse to see her and…
    28 July 2019
  • Sugy
    Re: Cognitive Behaviour Therapy
    My son is 3.5 years old and he seems to be hyper in all ways. He constantly disturbs everyone in home when they are working. Always…
    15 July 2019
  • Fjm
    Re: Smacking and Children
    I hate hitting my children as it makes me feel like I have lost control and could have handled it better. However once they have had a…
    14 July 2019
  • Ellabella
    Re: Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD)
    My son is now 13. He is the youngest of 5. I have always known there was 'something' different with Josh. I have a 22…
    5 July 2019
  • jack
    Re: Major Depressive Disorder
    My daughter always shouting at then she go for me then smash my house she alot pain in her back and her belly bad head alot and her…
    30 June 2019
  • Lakki
    Re: Questionnaire: Does Your Child Have ADHD?
    Hi ,,,My son is 6 1/2 year old boy .He is very good in understanding the situations and helping people , very…
    19 June 2019