Being a teenager or tween can be difficult, as any parent can confirm. There can be an enormous amount of pressure on kids that age to fit in and stand out. It can be challenging to find the right circle of friends and to maintain those friendships. Hosting a party can be a wonderful way to expand those friendships and create wonderful memories. Parties can also be stressful. Here are ways to make your child’s next party a winner.
As a parent, it is important to work with your child to determine the type and size of party to host. Sleepovers, co-ed events, or themed parties could all be options. Make sure you work out how many of your child’s friends can be invited, the date and length of time for the party, and what your expectations are for what activities will take place.
Your teen might resist putting limits on the party but it is critical to have these ground rules established. Your rules can actually help your child avoid conflicts with other kids. Better for you to be blamed than your teen if not everyone he or she knows can be invited or if certainly activities are prohibited.
From birthday parties to casual parties, having a theme can transform a get-together into a memorable event. While often people think of themes as limited to parties for little kids, there can be a lot of added interest having in a party for a reason. Obviously, graduation or celebrating a school sports season will create their own obvious themes. For other parties, you and your teen might want to really highlight a theme like a movie night to watch a particular series of films or the theme could be subtler to provide a little interest.
Bring the theme to life with strategically-placed decorations. Lifesize cardboard cutouts can be used to keep the decorations mature enough for a teen while adding an impressive focal point for the room. These can make a great place for the party-goers to take selfies and group pictures to share with each other and on social media.
There is a certain element that transforms a group of people in one place into an actual party. Create the right atmosphere with music, food, and decorations that make it clear this is a party, not a study session. Another way to elevate the event is to provide ways to set the tone for the party. A movie night could be kicked off with the distribution of snacks while everyone plays a bit of movie-related trivia. That can get the party going while your child waits for their other guests to arrive.
Having props to use for taking pictures can encourage people to interact and have fun. Think in terms of hats, cardboard cutouts, face masks, and other accessories people can take turns trying on or poising with while they take pictures.
Eating is important for most parties and with growing teens and tweens, keeping party attendees fed will be even more important. Try to pick foods that tie in with the theme for the event and focus more on finger foods rather than items that require more dishes and silverware. Kids that age will be less comfortable committing to a meal-sized portion of anything. More snack-like foods that can be eatenwith their fingers will be easier to consume while socializing and moving around the room. It will also help kids try more different things to see which ones they like without as much waste.