Children love playing together. Many moms arrange a scheduled date and time for their children to get together and play. Playdates are great opportunities for kids to learn how to develop relationship and socialization. They can learn how to interact positively in different play scenarios. It is meant to be enjoyable for the kids and the moms as well.
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To play and to have fun is the main purpose of a play session; however there are times when things go awry due to kids’ behavioral concerns. Here are 5 of the most common behavioral issues on kids playdates.
Toy sharing. “You can’t play with this toy” - This is the most common cause of clash and emotional game play.
Solution: If you will be hosting a playdate, it will be a good idea to first ask your child which of his toys he is willing to share to his playmates and put away his special or favorite toys. It is the parent’s role to explain the idea of sharing - sharing toys with playmates doesn’t mean they get to keep them or take them home forever.
Age. Toddlers can really be unpredictable in their behavior. He may suddenly start whining or crying after several minutes of playing. The reason may be - he is hungry or sleepy.
Solution: If you are hosting a playdate, arrange it on a most convenient time for toddler participants, which is after a nap time. On the other hand if your kid is attending a play session it will be good to feed your child before a playdate.
Toy-throwing tantrums. When kids especially preshoolers get overexcited, they want to get hold of every toy they see. There are times that he wants to play a toy being played by another kid, thus just snaps it out of the blue. This behavior may lead to toy-throwing and petty quarrels.
Solution: If you are the host, talk to the parents and children participants about the guidelines you set before starting the session such as toy sharing, wait for your turn or play together and more.
Like a boss. Some children possess a dominant behavior that they want to be the leader to be followed at all times and the first ones to play with the toy.
Solution: For the host, it is a pre-requisite to inform the parents of the rules about the playdate that is to enjoy playing nicely with others to gain friends and not enemies through socializing and sharing. Everyone should get his turn to be the leader.
Snack-time showdown. Children may whine incessantly over prepared snacks. Picky eaters like children who prefer chips over healthy foods and more.
Solution: Before planning for a playdate snack, it is important to ask the parents about their child’s food facts, food sensitivities and allergies.
In order for a playdate to be full of fun and easy for the parents, it is advised to keep it short. An hour or two will be fine for a get-together. Keep in mind that kids are curious by nature, so to prevent unwanted accidents it is better to set a designated place - a play room or the yard wherein you can keep a watchful eye and keep vigilant while you and your parent-friends also enjoy socializing over a tea party.