It’s no secret that preschoolers love to party and Valentine’s Day provides a great opportunity for you to host a party for them.
The mere thought of eating sweets, being surrounded by colorful decorations and getting together with friends to play are enough to send most preschoolers over the moon with excitement and anticipation. But if you’re going to host a party for preschoolers that will truly be successful, you might want to consider following some of these important tips for planning a successful party.
Develop a Master Plan
First, you’re going to want to come up with your master plan. This includes picking your time and date, narrowing down your invitation list and planning your Valentines Day party menu, decorations and activities.
Since many preschoolers still nap in the afternoon, you may want to select a morning time frame to host your party. A two hour party with a handful of guests is typically an optimal plan (10-12 and 11-1 are usually good time frames for preschoolers). However, parties with larger number of guests can be hosted successfully if you’re organized and outline a party schedule. If many of your child’s friends are in school, hosting your party on the weekend may be a good option. If your child is in school and you opt to invite children from your child’s preschool class to your party, you’ll want to know the school’s policy on handing out invitations to classmates.
Plan your Menu
When it comes to planning your menu, serving preschool favorites, with a Valentine’s Day twist, usually works best. Serving peanut butter and jelly or cream cheese and jelly sandwiches cut into the shapes of hearts using cookie cutters, sliced strawberries and red peppers, and pink lemonade are good menu starters. If you have guests that have food allergies, be sure to take them into consideration when planning your menu.
Create Colorful and Easy Party Decorations
For decorations, cutting out hearts and hanging them on the walls and ceilings serve as a simple way to decorate. Using an old white sheet as a table cloth and covering it with small heart cutouts (as make shift confetti) also works well. Heart shaped balloons, red and white streamers, and curling ribbon can also be used for decorations.
Use Sweets as an Activity
No preschool Valentine’s Day party would be complete without sweets. In addition to serving candy, serving sugar cookies is a must. Sugar cookies double as a great hands-on activity to do during your Valentine’s Day party. Bake sugar cookies in advance, cutting them out into the shapes of hearts. During your party, put out assorted colors of frosting in small cups with plastic knives along with different types of sprinkles for the children to decorate. If you provide small Ziploc bags, children can even take home additional cookies as party favors.
Plan out Games and Activities
Another hands-on activity that preschoolers will enjoy is playing Hide the Hearts. Cut out small paper hearts and hide them in a designated area of your house. Give each child a paper bag (they can even decorate it prior) and have them search for the hidden hearts. Games or activities like Freeze Dance and Musical Chairs are also preschooler favorites and any of these can be played with a Valentine’s Day themed music.
When you set up your party attendees for success by offering acceptable food choices and activities during a time when they’re naturally rested, your party is more likely to be a success.