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Christmas Parties


klc106
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We would like to organise a christmas party for our little ones at playgroup. Has anyone got any top tips for making it a success. All our children are 2yrs old.

Do you invite parents?

Do you hold during a normal playgroup session?

Do you hire 'santa'?

Do you provide each child with a little gift?

Do you provide food and drinks?

 

Also, what sort of games etc. do you play to fill the time?

 

Sorry for so many questions but I am new to all of this.

 

Thanks xxx

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we used to do ours in house but over the past few years we have hired out a local play area and it is so much easier as they provide all the food, Santa etc.

We provide a gift but they can be sourced easily and cheaply enough

We normally charge parents about £7 which they are more than happy to pay.

We do staff it but parents are welcome to stay if they want and many do - its a good way for them to meet their childs friends and family

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Although we take from 2, most of ours are 3+ this year.

 

For us we do not ask parents - we have in the past, but we find the children are more settled without them. However your children are quite young still, so you may need to consider what is best for your 'current group'

 

We hold ours during session time, takes a bit of organisation as we ask all children. Letter to ofsted explaining what/when/how we cover the event complete with a copy of out RA for day.

 

Santa - one of our staff's parent.

 

Gift - book, usually from the book people as they have good offers + bubbles and fun size sweet.

 

 

food - we make a chart of what we would like, and parents pick an item to supply.

 

We usually have an entertainer - so a few warm up activities (listening games) entertainer, food then 'dancing' games. Santa arrives at the end. The parents arrive in time to take the children to see Santa themselves if they wish.

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We have quite a few little ones so we keep our party short and sweet. We close preschool on the last friday of term and have one party from 10 - 12 and another one from 1 - 3 ( we have approx 25 children at each party). We provide the food and entertainment (face painting, balloon modelling, pass the parcel etc) and parents supply a gift to the value of £6.00. Parents leave their child and return at 11.30 or 2.30 to hear the children sing a couple of seasonal songs and to see them receive their gift from santa. Between 12 and 1 we have a staff lunch and each of us brings something to the table and a secret santa gift. It is usually a lovely calm day and sets us all up nicely for the christmas break. I hope whatever you do, you enjoy it, don't make it too all singing, all dancing, in 20 years of christmas parties I have found that simple is often best.

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We would like to organise a christmas party for our little ones at playgroup. Has anyone got any top tips for making it a success. All our children are 2yrs old.

Do you invite parents?

Do you hold during a normal playgroup session?

Do you hire 'santa'?

Do you provide each child with a little gift?

Do you provide food and drinks?

 

Also, what sort of games etc. do you play to fill the time?

 

Sorry for so many questions but I am new to all of this.

 

Thanks xxx

 

we hold an anual christmas party for the children ...we keep it simple. We hire an entertainer (we have found some who are quite reasonably priced if we mention we are a pre-school and also because it is mid week in the morning again makes it cheaper). We have the children print a table cloth(s) during the previous weeks (or paint & draw) and so we set up a table with a few nibbles (each child has aa party box full of nibbles and a drink), the staff dress in party gear and we have party music. then about an hour before we are due to end (we hold it during normal session lime 3 hours) we open the doors to parents et al...and santa arives and gives each child a small present. The staff pay for the food and we find sometimes parents donate some cakes or savoury bits but we do not expect them to nor ask. The fund raising pays for the entertainer, a bottle of something for our santa (not that we encourage santa to drink of course but it does help him to keep out the cold on that sleigh) and the small present for each child. So parents do not have to worry about the cost of their child attending the party. It is always a great day and appreciated by the families because so often these days a visit to santa costs an arm and a leg. We do not hire santa but have always used either a grandad or more recently we have used our caretaker who is CRB checked but it is only once a year, santa is never alone with the children so we do not worry if there is a volunteer granpa who offers about the crb as a one off....we use common sense. The children go up onto the stage where santa sits on his fur covered chair and in the sack is a named gift for each child. While shaking hands with Santa and saying thank you they have photo's taken to remind them of the day.

Edited by enuffsenuf
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ours was always a non funded day.. so parents paid enough to cover the hall hire charge.. staff gave time... parents supplied food, we put up a list and they signed next to an item so we didn't end up with loads of one item.. always easy to buy items, which we put into party boxes for the children to have.. so many didn't eat much so they could then take it home and we had less wastage.. drinks we used fruit shoot bottles , easy to buy and no spills...it is a treat day ... we provided a small gift from money raised in a raffle, if short on funds we had parents provide one for a set cost.

 

we started with an entertainer.. ( luckily ex parent is a professional children's entertainer.. free until his children left , then he did it for very little) a bit of dancing. food, and parents came in for end with Santa , (we found one in the local bowls club who did it for us, although we also found a couple to do it a few years where mother Christmas came too!)

 

keep it short, easy to do and fun for all including the staff... we also dressed up for the day...

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Ooooh I like the idea of hiring a soft play... we've already booked our entertainer for this year though.

We are lucky (?) to be able to use the school hall so we have space and there is a store room off it that we decorated as Santa's Grotto last year. Hopefully we can do that again. The school site manager is Santa for us.

We close the pre-school then charge the parents for the party - around £3/£3.50 can't remember exactly - and the party is from 11-2.

Last year we didn't book entertainer in time and it was a loooooong time to fill for 60 children! This year we'll have nearer 80!

We also give a book from a book club pack usually but as we gave books as leaver's presents and as opening gift for our new building we're looking at getting something different this year.

We have some party food - usually donated but I think last year we got the children to make cakes and biscuits and we bought the rest from funds. That's the worst bit I think as we plated it all up so they all had the same and it was ready to give out as we have so many. We sat them on the floor on PE mats like a picnic!

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Like the idea of having a box for each child for the party food that way, nothing gets wasted. We ask parents to donate a plate of food from a list that we provide, so each parent puts their name next to an item. We also buy a Book People book, with a chocolate santa. Parents don't stay but I think it would be nice to invite them in near the end to sing some songs. We usually have a santa but last year really struggled to find one. So we did without, when it was time a member of staff popped outside and rang a bell or sleigh bells leaving a sack of presents for each child. In the sack was a letter, who could it be from (the clue was the in the letter, opening it up, the glitter I mean magic dust fell out, with a big picture of santa on the back). Worked a treat, the children were all hooked and no tears either from the little ones who can be frightened of santa sometimes.

 

When the children arrive we have party hat templates ready for children to decorate, then some musical bumps, pass the parcel. Then we go into the school hall for some ring games whilst the tables are laid, then food, then presents and a sing song. I know I had a rough plan last year, and we couldn't fit it all in, just went with the flow but then we only have about 24 children.

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That reminded me - what we do as well (in terms of Christmas but not parties!!) is to get each child to write a letter to Santa. We made a template that said something like

Dear Father Christmas,

I have been very good this year and for Christmas I would like...

 

Then the children drew a picture of what they would like. Some were no more than a scribble and others were fantastic! We wrote what it was and if they could write their name they did and if not we did.

 

They put all their letters in a sack that magically appeared and :o they had vanished by the next day! Who could have taken them?? We then sent a personalised letter to each child - I'll try to attach an example. We put the original letters in their scrapbooks with an explanation of how the elves returned them so they could have them in their books.

On years we don't have the funds for postage we ask the parents to provide a SAE if they can. Most do and we can manage to cover the cost of the rest.

We have also sent to the Reindeerland address before but found not all got a reply xD

letter_from_FC_AH__AT_CC__EB.doc

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We have 3 parties held on the last 3 days of term. Our children do anything from one morning to 5 full days so to try and catch them all we have to do 3!

 

We start the session off normally but pack up a bit earlier to do some christmas games and have party food. We put a list up of food and ask parents to sign next to the food they can bring in. Children that normally only come for mornings can stay longer for the party food. Parents are then invited in to listen to Christmas singing.

 

We don't have Santa visiting but he leaves them presents (book from book people usually) and some reindeer food.

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