Spring fever is in the air and it’s time to put away those winter sweaters and pull out your shorts, flip flops and swim suits. The sunshine and warm weather screams fun for both children and parents of all ages. Now for stay at home moms and dads it’s time to reach out to your network of friends and round a playgroup.
Playgroups are great for those children not in a preschool or day care. Socialization is one of the most important skills for toddlers to develop. Having your child around other children helps them to achieve this milestone. A playgroup helps to provide the development of companionships with other children in their same age group.
Moms and Dads this is great for you too. Most importantly for first time parents, it’s great to know you have a group of parents that you can bounce ideas off of. I’ve learned so much from talking with parents at my child’s playgroup. I truly look forward to our playgroup day, because it’s also my “mommy-time.” We chat on just about almost anything, new recipes, kids, in-laws and about the latest giveaways and coupons on Shopaholic Mommy!
If you’re not sure where to start, here are a few guidelines for an amazing playgroup…
- Design a layout or theme. The traditional playgroup (my playgroup) consists of the toddlers that attend with parent or caregiver. This gives us parent’s time to chat it up and relax (within reason of course).
- Well-matched children preferred. Ah the toddler stage it’s such a lovely stage. As your child’s personality is really starting to stand out; it’s important to find children with both similar personalities and age.
- Set a rendezvous spot. You have several options. Possible considerations bounce between homes, meet at the park, zoo, pool, or playground.
- Have a set day and time. This may take some compromising, but it’s recommended to schedule a time that’s best for the children. It’s preferred to consider nap time and eating schedules.
- Set safety and behavior rules. For the days you go to the pool, zoo or playground, it’s recommended to have guidelines in place to keep the children safe. It’s also important for all parents and caregivers to understand the rules when visiting another child’s home.
- Food rule. Do you want your playgroup to eat snack or lunch? One possible consideration is to work around nap, but include snack or lunch during your playgroup. If you choose to have a “theme styled” playgroup (i.e. Italian, Mexican) it would be fun to serve lunch or snack around the daily them.
Do you already have a playgroup? If so, we’d love to hear about it. Please post a comment on our website.