What to Consider When Beginning Playdates

Playdates can offer a wide variety of great experiences for your child as they begin to grow and develop. Throughout this post, we will talk more about the benefits of playdates for your child, when to know when your child is ready, and how to set up and prepare for playdates.

Playing with other children offers littles the opportunity to grow in different ways that can lead to success within school and in their personal relationships with others. When children interact with each other it allows them to practice their social skills, observe the skills of others, and learn how to cooperate with one another. This exposure will allow them to develop social and emotional life skills. Imaginative play will also likely occur that can allow them to reap skills needed in school such as practicing problem solving (math), categorizing (science), and storytelling (literacy).

Most kids will engage in a series of different types of play as they grow. Most children are at an ideal time for playdates when they start showing signs of cooperative play. This is when they begin engaging with other children by sharing toys or ideas that help them to play together. This type of play usually occurs at the age of 4.

Setting up a playdate can be approached in a variety of ways, one of the best ways is to follow the lead of your child. When you see them asking for more time to play with a friend or wanting to invite them over, this can be a sign they are ready. You can start by approaching the other parent/caregiver to set up a playdate or send a note with your child. For the first couple meetings it can be good to start off by gathering at a public place such as a park. This will give you the opportunity to see how the children interact with one another, get to know the other family better and see if you feel comfortable with future playdates. It also can be a time to share mutual expectations or boundaries you have with the other parent.

Before a playdate, it is important to go over rules and expectations you have with your child. Roleplaying with your child can be a helpful tool because it teaches them how to share, what to do when there is an issue, and model what good play should look like.

Overall, trust yourself in knowing what is best for you and your child. Playdates can be a fun and exciting time that will help your child grow social skills and relationships with others. It is important that you make sure that you feel comfortable with the families your child is with and that you're ready as well to supervise the children they bring over. Share expectations with your child and others so that clear boundaries can be set and have fun as you see your child grow and build friendships.

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Monday, 16 May 2022

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