As a preschool teacher, I’ve had moms ask me the best way to develop a child’s social skills. And I would always recommend to simply get them out there– let them hang out with other kids, bring them to the park, enroll them in classes, or organize play dates with their friends. I’ve seen it firsthand–my students growing from shy people to individuals just brimming with confidence. And I think that it’s through consistent exposure to friends and group learning activities that enables them to grow and build the confidence to interact at their own pace. So even though school’s already out, the exposure and interaction doesn’t have to stop. Parents can organize cool play dates to encourage their children to be more sociable and confident–but who says play dates just mean park dates or movie dates? Form a super awesome “parenthood play date club”, and take turns hosting play dates with these unforgettable themes!
1. Mad Scientists
Prepare some science activities for the kids such as making D.I.Y. lava lamps, experimenting with erupting moon rocks, or learning to separate colors from markers to see how they were created! We bet this will be one for the books!
2. Budding Artists
Bring out the artists in your kids, but add a special twist by letting them paint on slices of bread! I bet they’ll be having so much fun painting and eating at the same time! You can also have them paint on pots and rocks, which they can also bring home and use as decoration.
3. Earth Warriors
Make it all about the love for Mother Nature as you focus on activities that will encourage love for our planet–you can recycle old shoe boxes or jars, or you can nurture their love for plants and gardening with planting activities.
4. Little Chefs
Who doesn’t love to cook… and eat, of course! Haha! I’m pretty sure the kids will go cray making their own homemade pizza or baking their own cupcake or cake!
5. Treasure Hunters
Make your play date even more exciting with a hidden treasure! This will encourage team work and bring in a whole lot of fun! Print out a map and work on obstacle courses for the little ones to enjoy. It can also be a medium for learning game activities, such as accomplishing certain tasks like “getting all the star shaped papers to find out the next clue” or maybe something a bit more challenging for the older kids.