September brings a fresh, new start for many of us from first day of kindergarten to a new grade or arriving at a new school & neighbourhood. Here’s some of our favorite ideas to help your child feel more at ease with both old and new friends.
Host a “Getting to know you” party. Invite the new children in the class & some of the “old” friends (if possible) to in order to help with any transitions. You can go all out or keep it simple, whichever suits your child’s needs & personality. If you’re a parent new to the school or class, invite the parents to stay so you can get to know them as well.
- Host the party early in the school year
- Have a potluck BBQ meal
- Play some fun, getting to know you games & crafts
- Moved into a new neighourhood, host a block party on your street
Find your partner: Ahead of time, write up your partners i.e. Mickey Mouse & Minnie Mouse, Charlie Brown & Snoopy, Batman & Robin etc When the children arrive, pin a name to their backs. At your signal, the children mingle with other guests asking questions about themselves which can only be answered “yes” or “no” i.e.”Am I a cartoon?” “Am I a superhero?” Younger children may need an adult to give an extra clue or two along the way. Once everyone’s found their partners have them introdue each other to the rest of the group.
Q & A: Have your guests stand in a circle. Have an adult start off the game by throwing a ball or beanbag to someone in the circle & ask a question at the same time such as “What’s your name?” “Do you have a brother or sister?” “What’s your favorite colour?” The person who catches the ball/beanbag answers the questions then throws it to another person asking their own question. It’s a great ice breaker game & works best if you keep things moving quickly.
Human Scavenger Hunt: Divide a sheet of paper into the number of guests at the party (i.e. 25 spaces for 25 guests) Write a description in each grid i.e. plays on a spots team, went on a summer camping trip, read 5 books over the summer etc. Hand each guest a copy of the grid and have them start the scavenger hunt. Only 1 rule to remember – you must find a different person for each description. When they find the person matching the description that person must sign their name. Offer a prize to the first guest who has all descriptions signed. Be creative & have fun getting to know your guests young & old!
Other fun activities include a pinata, relay games, tug-o-war and if the weather is still warm, include a water balloon toss.
Keepsake binder craft: Geared for the older children (however younger children with the help of an adult will enjoy too), creating a personalized binder can be used to display their best summer moments to share with their friends.
Supplies needed: 3 ring binder with clear inserts, construction paper (various colours), tape/glue stick, photos, magazines to cut pictures out of, stickers, scissors, felts, scrapbook supplies etc
How to make it: Remove any labels from the binder. Insert the construction paper to check sizing. Have children decorate the insert to their desire. Also have an insert sized for the binding insert if applicable. Once decorated to their liking, insert into the binder.
Foam Door Hangers: This great craft is fun for kids of all ages!
Supplies needed: Foam, glue, stickers, felts scissors, glitter etc
How to make it: Cut out door hangers or you can purchase foam door hangers which have already been cut out for you. Have children design their door hanger with their name, stickers & other items they’ve used to decorate. Once glue has dried have them hang from their bedroom door.
Par-T-Perfect’s additional ideas: have a bouncy castle, face painting & balloon animals as part of the festivities – a sure hit for any party! A Teddy Bear stuffing party is a great idea if the weather is not quite right for being out door.
Whatever you choose to do to help your children transition into a new class, school or neighbourhood, these party ideas are sure to make everyone the best of friends very quickly!
Need help with ideas? Visit our website www.par-t-perfect.com to contact your local Par-T-Perfect!