With three very social kids and all spread out in age I feel like the master of play dates, we have days where we have middle schoolers, elementary kids, and preschoolers all in the same place at the same time!! This can be a challenge, but there are a few things that make playdates successful no matter the age. Though these are playdate tips for preschoolers, they really apply for all ages.
We’ve been loving having friends and family back in our home for playdates and Fisher-Price has asked me and other mamas across Canada to share some tips on what makes a good playdate, in hopes that when you feel comfortable to host again you will + it will be a blast!
The simple act of play builds creativity, creates positive feelings, and fosters connections. I’m happy to partner with Fisher-Price and #FPPlayTogether to invite you to play, connect see the world the way kids do!
Keep in mind, not all playdates are going to be successful, so if you have opened your home to someone new and had the first playdate go sideways, don’t give up! (That happened to me!) One of the first playdates we had with our oldest, was with someone he met in preschool, and it did not go as planned… regretfully I had left out some Sharpies on the table and the kids took them into the basement and drew all over the furniture… it wasn’t pretty
Since then, we have had many successful playdates and I am happy to share with you “how to host a playdate” from what I have learned. It’s such a joy to celebrate play through our kids’ eyes and see them connect with their imagination together.
Here are 7 Tips for Successful Playdates with Preschoolers
- Snacks! Snacks! + more Snacks! I don’t know about your kids but my kids are always asking for food. Make sure you have some easy, kid friendly finger food to keep their tummies happy… and everyone else happy! Ha!
- If you or the kids feel a little unwell, always reschedule. There is nothing worse than starting a playdate and someone complains about not feeling good.
- Talk to your kids about sharing pre playdate, sometimes reminders are needed depending on your child’s personality. You may want to ask them if there are any toys they don’t want to share as they feel like special toys and suggest putting those toys away so that they know everything else is to be shared.
- Pull out some toys that your kids haven’t played with for a while, we separate our toys in different bins and can swap bins to refresh the toys right before a playdate.
- If you don’t want to worry about your house being turned upside-down, dress for the weather, pack up some toys and plan to meet at a local playground, field, or water hole.
- Plan your timeline, make sure you mention an end time for your playdate, especially if it’s a new friend and you invite the parent to stay. If you don’t have an end time you may find them overstaying without intention.
- Don’t forget to get in on the play yourself! It’s great to connect with our kids on their level and enjoy play through their eyes, let’s be honest… Toys may have an age range but with the right mindset we are never too old to play!
Happy playing! If you have tips of your own make sure to comment them below, would love to add to the list.