Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Playdate protocol

Ok all you mommy's out there with kindergarden me out here.

What is playdate protocol for 5yr olds?

Cole has been to a few playdates this year and in this last month I am returning the favor. Every week I have a new kid over from his class (who he has had a playdate with). Problem is, I have no clue what I'm "supposed" to be doing with them

  • Do I let them hang out and play solo (ie: close by with the eyes in the back of my head watching)?
  • Do I play with them?
  • Can I let them play Wii?

Cole has experienced all three of these kinds of playdates and he's enjoyed them all. I would LOVE to see the boys play solo so I could actually relax (maybe read the paper?)while the twins nap. Last week, the boys and I sat at the table and colored our own Pokemon cards. I thought they would color on their own and I could do some marking at the table.

Nooooooo, once I drew my card they wanted me to draw all of them.

So what are mom's expecting from me? Is the purpose for my child to have some independent socializing so I can relax, or is the goal for the invited child's mom to get the rest?

Or both?


  1. My opinion is that if the kids play well together, let them play solo, but stay close by, and keep checking on them so the other kid knows you haven't just left them (and that way if their mom asks if you were around, they can honestly say you were). Why shouldn't both mom's get a break out of it? I think it's a very important skill for the kids to play without the parents around. Isn't that what being a kid is all about?

  2. Sorry, I can't help as I'm not there yet. personal opinion would be a bit of both!

  3. I'd stay within earshot. But I'm pretty laid-back...and my kiddo is only 3! :)

  4. I definitely let my child and the playdate child play together independent from me. I just check in on them every once in a while. I use it as a break!

  5. By age 5 I savor having my only child play with kids without me. I would stay close and listen but try to let them sort it all out on their own whilst staying out of trouble.

  6. For me, it's the first one and only the first one. I am not here to entain them and we don't have a Wii. But if I did have a Wii, yes, they could play, without me!!

    I think the whole point is independent socializing. They get attention from their own parents (we hope!) and at school things are structured by the teacher(s) so logic says....


  7. i don't have a 5 year old, but i would say give them a little solo time, but also have a pre-planned activity too. make sense?

    thanks for stopping by!!


  8. I always let them play on their own, within earshot (no closed doors), as a play date is a chance for them to develop their social skills one on one. I only step in if I hear arguing or complaining.
    for the Wii thing, I would ask the parent of the child if they allow their child to play Wii as Cole would like to play with his friend on the Wii for part of the play date if it is O.K. I would let them play for maybe half the time they are together because they should spend some time actually interacting with each other not just side by side with the tv. But the Wii is certainly a draw for kids to want to come over and set you up as the cool house to be at! I only have an activity prepared if my child specifically asks to be able to do something with their friend that requires my help.