Preschoolers who are not in daycare often get together with other preschoolers for playdates and socialization. Sure, the kids can just play with toys and socialize but sometimes a little extra activity is needed to guide preschoolers. If you are looking for some ideas for your next playdate get-together, read on!
- Crafts: Simple crafts are usually the best. Kids love to color, cut and paste. Center the craft on a holiday or season or even pick a them for the week. One idea is to cut out shapes and let the kids glue them onto paper in any way they like. They might make vehicles or people or houses. Another idea is to look online for coloring sheets of favorite characters and allow the children just to color. Stickers are fun, especially the foamie stickers that are available, often holiday themed. You’d be amazed how much kids socialize while doing crafts!
- Cooking: Plan a simple item to for the kids to cook or even just put together. Kids love to make their own English muffin pizzas. If you make the cookie dough, they can cut out cookies and decorate them. Make a yogurt parfait by letting kids choose items to layer into a cup. Of course, eating the creation is half of the fun!
- Bubbles: If outdoors is an option on a warm day, provide lots of bubbles solution and different items to experiment with. Kids can make some crazy fun bubbles!
- Water Play: As above, if the weather is warm, water is always a hit. Make sure the kids are properly attired for getting wet and supply big buckets or even small wading pools with water. Lots of scoops and small buckets as well as pretend dishes and even bath toys would be fun. BE SURE TO SUPERVISE ALL CHILDREN AROUND WATER AT ALL TIMES!!!!!
- Have a Teddy Bear Picnic where all the kids bring a Teddy Bear or other stuffed animal. Have a picnic on the floor with fun finger foods and read a Teddy Bear story such as Teddy Bear Teddy Bear Turn Around or Corduroy. If you have access to the song, The Teddy Bear’s Picnic,kids would enjoy dancing to it!
- Storytime: Pick some favorite stories and read them aloud to groups of children. You can follow up with a video of a favorite story as many are now available on DVD. I find them at the Library and have been able to find popular stories such as Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, Harold and the Purple Crayon, The Little Engine that Could, and many more. Most of these video stories are only 10 minutes long.
- Pretend Day: Have a pretend day where kids come dressed in costumes. This doesn’t have to be for Halloween but just for fun!
- Color Day: If you don’t want to do costumes, per say, you can pick a theme such as a color. Have everyone wear red, serve red foods, play with red playdough, and make a STOP sign craft!
- Pajama Day: Have kids come to the playdate in their favorite PJs. Serve popcorn (watch the popcorn with younger kids as it can be a choking hazard) and watch a short movie or read a story together. Have kids tell about dreams they have had or draw pictures of their dreams. You can even have everyone bring a flashlight and turn off the lights and play ceiling tag with the lights on the ceiling.
- Board Game Day: Using simple games, teach young children to play board games together. Games like Lucky Ducks and Let’s Go Fishing are great for younger kids. Candyland and Chutes and Ladders are great for Preschoolers. UNO and Monopoly Junior are good for slightly older kids.
Apart from the above points, children should also learn the benefits of sensory integration therapy as its good for muscle relaxation.