Valentine's Day Parties for Children
Aside from Halloween, this might be the time of year when parents can look forward to their children coming home from school feeling hyper and full of sugar. With the excitement of exchanging cards or sweet gifts, the plethora of cupcakes and candy that is sure to make an appearance and the fun that goes along with any holiday in general, they are sure to be going crazy. If you are bold enough to be hosting a Valentine's Day party with your child and his or her friends, then all of the power to you! To keep yourself and your festivities organised, we are here to help you figure out what to serve, what to play, and how to keep it all under control.
Planning the Party
- Who: When creating the guest list, think about the age of the children and the budget that you may have set for the party. Know that some feelings may be hurt without an invite, so it is best to try to keep the peace. Here are some suggestions on whom to invite so that no one feels too neglected.
- The whole class: By inviting everyone in your child's class, there are no hurt feelings. The downside is that you may end up cramming 20 or more kids into your home, so be sure that you have enough chaperones and other parents present if this is the route that you choose to take.
- Close friends only: By allowing your child to invite only a few best friends (maybe 5 or 6) you can have much more control over the group and costs will be kept down. The one thing that you will NOT want to do is hand the invites out at school; make sure you mail them or personally bring them to the children's homes. Again, you don't want any problems or confrontations regarding hurt feelings.
- Just the boys/girls: By only inviting the one gender of children from the class, you limit the number of kids present and it's still fair.
- What: Think about what kind of party you want to host. Will it be one at your home? At a recreation centre? At the cinema? Are you serving a meal? Will there be another theme to go along with the party outside of the obvious? Answer these questions with your child and decide on what type of party you are going to have. Once you have this out of the way, it's then easy to schedule it.
- When: Look at your calendar and decide when you are going to be undergoing this endeavour. Since February 14 is Valentine's Day, it is always recommended to have the party either the weekend prior to the holiday or the weekend after. Save the day itself to spend time with your family and to allow your child's friends to do the same.
- Where: If you are having the party out, be sure to check in with the location weeks in advance to be sure that you can book a party room or make a reservation for your group without any problems. If you choose to host the party at your home, be sure to clean the house thoroughly and check up on any allergies that the guests might have. You can then start to plan your menu and activities accordingly.
Food and Drink
- Paper goods: Whether you are having the party inside, outside, at home, or in a public place, you are probably expected to supply the paper goods. Look for them in a generic red, or get more festive with hearts or your child's favourite character. The necessities include:
- The menu: If you are having an afternoon party, will you want to serve lunch or just a few snacks? Try to keep the kids healthy if you can and limit the desserts so the kids aren't going too bonkers. Browse some of our ideas to help you decide what might work best. You can always send home the sugar in a bag full of chocolates ,heart candies , and cookies !
- Be festive: When you can, use heart-shaped cookie cutters . Make heart-shaped sandwiches or fruit and think outside of the box. The kids will enjoy the food much more and will be inclined to eat the healthy stuff first when it comes in fun shapes.
Games and Fun
Keep your party entertaining with Valentine's Day activities , or work around another theme that your child is interested in such as a tea party or an afternoon full of board games ! Here are some classic games, activities, and crafts that have become popular at children's Valentine's Day celebrations:
- Make cards for the kids to exchange with one another. See our guide on Valentine's Day Cards for Kids to figure out what kind of supplies you will need.
- Make some crafts! Check out our guide on Valentine's Day Crafts for Kids for some creative ideas.
- Who could forget about "Pin the Heart on the Cupid?"
- You can always play musical chairs! Incorporate modern love songs that kids will know.
- If you have a large group to work with, think about hiring an entertainer. Clowns and magicians are often a good time, but you will have to book well in advance.
- Engage the kids in a group activity such as a bake-off. With each group utilising a chaperone, have the kids each make a decorative cookie for dessert.
- Create a scavenger hunt! This works best with older children who understand the concept. Hide Valentine's Day toys or treats and write up your own creative clues.
Check out some of our guides for even more ideas to get your party going.