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There comes a time in every child’s life where they host their first sleepover. Whether it’s a cousin or a friend from school, sleepovers are what a childhood is all about. However, times have definitely changed from when we were kids. You can keep them simple and fun, just make sure you follow these tips.
Meet the parents first
Like I mentioned, sleepovers aren’t like they once were. You want to know where your kids are and where they’re staying. Even if you’re hosting the sleepover, you should set up a meeting with the parents. If you’re related to the family, then this part should be easy.
Make a list of what the child will need
Unless you’re providing a sleeping bag and everything else the child will need, make sure you make a list of what they’re expected to bring. Keep the list simple and fun. A sleeping bag, pillow, pajamas, and a change of clothes should work. Don’t forget to remind them about bringing personal items, such as a toothbrush and a comb.
Get snacks ready
You can’t host your first sleepover without the right snacks. Ask your child what kind of snacks they’d like to have for the sleepover. Kids will want to be involved in the snack-buying and snack-making process, so don’t leave them out. Pizza is always a good idea for dinner because it's quick and easy. You can either plan to have it delivered or pop one in the oven shortly after friends arrive.
I put out a fun serving tray with popcorn, some candy, juice boxes, and water so the kids can help themselves.
Keep the activities relaxed
To keep your sanity and to help the kids stay relaxed, don’t over do it on the activities. Plan a movie or a low-key activity, but don’t go crazy. We brought out a bunch of new games from Goliath Games and Pressman Toys that are perfect for the younger crowd.
I think the kids were most excited to play Pop the Pig and Doggie Doo since those are the ones they've seen most often on commercials and YouTube.
Pop the Pig is the #2 best-selling new kids game of the last 6 years (NPD) and reinforces number, colors, and counting. Bonus: no batteries required!
I feel like everyone has heard about the Doggie Doo game by now! But, this was our first time playing! In a house of boys, there are definitely some giggles while this pup makes his gassy sounds and eventually… needs his doo cleaned up. If you're looking for something that really keeps the laughs coming, it's this one! Again, no batteries needed!
Shark Bite was also a big hit! This fun game from Pressman Toy builds excitement as the kids fish for sea creatures, while hoping the shark doesn't bite them! I love that this is another battery-free game.
Giggle Wiggle is a super cute caterpillar game that requires friends to race to the top by placing colored marbles on his hands while he's wiggling to the fun music. I'm always a fan of an active game like this one.
Catch the Fox is another super silly game. This fox stuffs chickens into his pockets, but eventually there are too many chickens and his pants fall down and kids have to collect the chickens that roll out! What kid doesn't think that's funny? It's great battery-free excitement full of giggles!
All of these games are super easy to set-up, meaning the kids can get right to playing and play over and over again! With such a variety of games, everyone can play something and have a chance to play everything since the games are short.
Remember you do want the kids to sleep, during this sleepover. You can do story time, craft time, snack time, and even have a period where you have a dance party to help them get their energy out.
Although a first-time sleepover, for any kid, can be nerve-wracking, it’s all about having fun. Don’t be uptight and afraid to let the kids have any fun. It’s okay to be spontaneous too. You want your kiddo to have good memories of this sleepover, so make it happen. Fun can happen at the first sleepover, just wait and see.
Planning a first sleepover comes down to a little planning and a lot of fun. Let the kids giggle and have fun, but don’t be afraid to remind them of the rules. Sleepovers are a real treat, so enjoy your child’s first sleepover hosting experience.
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.