Obviously Halloween has come and gone but there are a few things that worked really well for me this year that I think could be useful for play dates in general too. For that reason I have made these tips generalized to fit most gatherings.
- Dress your kids for the occasion. You don't want to be unprepared for weather changes or cold floors if it's an indoor playdate.
- Plan to eat first if possible. Everyone, adults and kids will get along better. Try making it a cooperative effort where someone brings the sandwiches, someone else brings fresh fruit/vegetables, and someone else brings juice or another drink etc.
- Avoid during nap time get togethers. No one wants to have that kid that is crying or having fits because they are overtired.
- Think of and plan for the easiest way to handle multiple kids. That could mean wraps, leashes, wagons, etc.
- Don't overstay your welcome or plan the play date for too long. If it encroaches upon nap time, make your guests aware of it.
- Alternate where the play date is hosted to give variety and allow the kids to play with toys that are not their own.
- Try to keep a 1:2 ratio of adults to children. Anything more than that becomes much harder to manage.