At first, setting up a playdate seems easy enough, and moms are always trying to get their little ones together. But there are some playdates that have a lot of problems from the outset, like if a child is crying as soon as their mom drops them off, or they're given something that they can't actually eat.
There are many things that parents can do to make sure that the playdate is so much fun and that everyone wants to hang out again. Here are 10 tips for a successful playdate.
10 Ask The Other Mom About What You Need To Know
While all kids love to play and really enjoy when their grandparents get them toys and treats, it's definitely true that every kid is unique. If you want to throw a playdate that is successful, the best thing that you can do is ask the other mom about what you need to know about their child.
Maybe they have a peanut allergy, absolutely hate sports, or there's something else that would be really great to know beforehand.
9 Pick A Variety Of Games
Some kids love playing outside and running around on a hot summer's day is honestly all the entertainment that they need. Other children are big on sports and board games and are always up for anything.
Another thing to do for a successful playdate would be to pick a variety of games. This way, you can make sure that you're offering the other child a few different options and they will have fun no matter what they choose. Maybe they'll even discover a new board game that they love and they'll tell their mom all about it.
8 Don't Hover But Keep Checking In
The worst thing that moms can do is hover during a playdate because, depending on the age of the child, it might get pretty annoying... and it can stress the mom out, too.
Don't hover, but it's a good idea to keep checking in. Ask your kid and their friend if everything is okay, if they're having fun, and if they need anything. The other child will be sure to tell their mom that you were really nice and that they had a great time, and that's definitely what you want.
7 Call Or Text The Other Mom Halfway Through
Moms worry. And if your child is at a new friend's home for the very first time, it's highly possible that you would be concerned and wonder how everything's going.
It's smart to call or text the other mom halfway through the playdate. While you might wonder if that's too much, the truth is that they will probably be really happy to hear from you. Even if you simply say that you just wanted to let them know that things are going well, they're going to be pleased and comforted.
6 Talk To Your Kid About What They Want To Do
Kids love when parents check in with them and ask what they like and dislike. It shows that grown-ups have a lot of respect for them and honestly care about them.
For a playdate that is a success, talk to your kid about what they want to do. If it's summer and you have a pool, for example, do they want to ask their new pal about bringing their bathing suit and going for a swim? If it's winter, do they want to bake cookies or brownies? If your kid is having fun, then chances are their friend will too.
5 Step In If There Are Any Problems
Playdates aren't always pleasant and there might be some problems that unfold. For example, someone could steal a toy, take too many crackers or chips, or start crying for what seems like no reason at all.
If you see that there is something going on that's making the playdate much less fun, definitely step in. The kids will be glad that you're making sure that everyone is having a great time (and the other mom will appreciate it too).
4 Manners Are The Key Here
You can also remind your little one about manners before the playdate (and it doesn't hurt to do this during the playdate, either). "Thank you" and "please" go a really long way.
When both kids are being polite, the chances of a successful playdate seem a lot higher. It'll be a lot easier on you as well since you'll be looking after more than one child.
3 Plan Some Snacks
Snacks are the best part of any gathering. Any grown-up would agree with that. The same is true for kids who are having a playdate.
You can definitely make the playdate successful by planning some snacks. Maybe you want to put out a board with grapes, cheese, crackers, celery, carrots, and some other delicious foods. Or maybe you want to offer something healthy (like yogurt) and then a treat.
2 Remember Bathroom Breaks And Water
Of course adults know when they have to use the bathroom, and they try their best to drink enough water (or at least they know that they should drink enough water). Kids don't always want to go to the bathroom, whether they have a fear of it because they have only just begun to use the potty, or because they're too busy playing.
It's a good idea to remind your kid and their friend to use the bathroom every so often. You can also make the playdate successful by having the kids drink enough water. Even if they only down half a glass, it's better than nothing and will help keep their moods stable and happy.
1 Ask Your Kid If They Want Another Play Date Soon
Another tip for a successful playdate would be to ask your kid if they want to make another play date soon. One of the most amazing things about children is their honesty. They will absolutely let you know if they like this new pal or if they don't want to see them again. And if they say that they want another playdate, you'll know that this afternoon was definitely fun for everyone.