I know if you are reading this, you are probably of the era where we just "went" to friends houses. The first time I heard or actually read the word playdate was when I was teaching 2nd grade in Lower Merion.
Dear Miss Wetzel,
Danielle is going to be going home with Kaitlyn today for a playdate.
I actually laughed thinking what a funny word and then I heard it and read it almost every day for thee rest of that year till I myself was using the word. Now ten years later, we have play dates. My friend recommended this topic as to what is play date etiquette. I am no expert, but I always have an opinion:)
Cole started to have playdates as a baby. At that time it really had nothing at all to do with him. I was in the need of a little adult time and was able to meet others with little ones to socialize with. Luckily I hooked up with a great playgroup through meet up which then later sparked lots of friendships for both of us. Now that Cole is approaching four things are really changing. He has his friends. At this point I am friends with all those friends' moms, which works out terrifically for me.
Here are some things to think about though with playdates..
What do you do if your child no longer gets along with your friends' child?
I think it really depends on why they no longer play, is someone too rough or do they have different interests now. I would suggest meeting on neutral ground instead of at home. Maybe a park and that way the kids don't have to share toys and can play together or apart.
Do you always stay on play dates?
We are hitting the age where Cole could be dropped off to play. In fact he really could care less if I am around any more at most houses. I think that is awesome! Recently my very good friend and I have been leaving the kids at each others' homes. We live close enough where we could quickly run back to get the kids and the kids are so familiar with the others parents that it works. At this point I would not leave Cole somewhere unless I knew the parents well and how they handle things at their home. I think 4 is a great age to start the drop off kind of playing.
What do you do if a child is misbehaving at your home and the parent is not doing anything about it?
The teacher in me corrects the child as positively as possible then a little more sternly. I can't help it and at this point my friends know this is what they'll get out of me and they still stick around so they must accept it.
It is fun moving towards the next stage, but also scary as we'll be putting Cole in public school soon and I know that I will have to send him off with parents I don't really know!