jueves, 13 de septiembre de 2012

A Child’s First Sleepover | Full Time Nanny

A Child’s First Sleepover | Full Time Nanny

A Child’s First Sleepover
12:43 PM
Whether you’re hosting your child’s first sleepover with a group of friends or sending her over to a pal’s house for her first overnight play date, making sure that the event goes off as smoothly as possible depends largely on your ability to prepare yourself and the children involved for the event. There are a handful of inevitabilities that both hosting parents and those dropping a child off should take into consideration before they extend the first invitation or send along an RSVP.
Hosting Parents
Whether it’s a birthday slumber party with several little guests or simply your child’s first overnight play date, hosting a sleepover can be a daunting task, especially if you’re not very familiar with the guests or their parents. To ensure that your child’s very first entertaining experience is the best one possible, there are a few things that you should take into account in order to avoid being caught unaware.

  • Someone Will Get Homesick – It’s one of childhood’s most universally accepted truths that even the most eager child can be suddenly struck with a bout of homesickness that moves her to tears, usually around bedtime. Rather than being blindsided by a hysterical child, it’s a good idea to go into your first sleepover hosting experience planning for at least one attack of homesickness. While some of these episodes can be smoothed over without contacting a parent, you should also be ready to call home for a child that simply can’t calm down.
  • Foods Should Be Allergy-Friendly – If one of your pint-sized attendees has a known food allergy, her parents will almost certainly let you know about it when they drop her off or will pass the information along with an RSVP. Still, some kids can have undetected food allergies or sensitivities and others may inadvertently eat foods that they have a known sensitivity to without realizing it during the excitement of a sleepover. To err on the side of caution, try to keep all of your snacks free of common allergens like peanuts, tree nuts, and eggs.
  • Your Guest’s Parents Need to Know What to Expect – Sleepover parties that include a trip to the park or some other outing should be explained in detail to the parents of your guests and approved of in advance, to avoid any problems later. The parents of your little one’s friends are entrusting their children to you, so it’s important that they have a clear idea of what the night will entail.
  • Keep the Numbers Manageable – While your child might be wild to invite every little girl in her class to her birthday slumber party, it’s not always a great choice for first-time sleepover hosts. Be sure to keep the numbers as manageable as possible until you’re more accustomed to hosting overnight parties.
  • Be Ready For a Dispute or Two – Even the best of friends have their share of arguments, especially when they’re quite young. Before you ever send the first invitation, you should be prepared for the fact that you will be forced to mediate at least one tear-filled argument over the course of your child’s sleepover.

Parents of Sleepover Guests
When your child has never spent a night with anyone outside of her immediate family, the idea of sending her off to a slumber party can be quite bittersweet. Making sure that she has a great time can depend largely on letting her know what to expect and preparing her for her overnight trip.

  • Talk About Homesickness – Before packing your little one’s suitcase, it’s wise to have a talk with her about spending the night away from home, and the possibility that she will get sad and want to come home when the excitement ends. A child who’s prepared for the possibility of homesickness isn’t bewildered when she experiences it, and may be able to manage her feelings on her own.
  • Address Any Bed-Wetting Concerns Bedwetting Children estimates that up to ten percent of elementary school students still suffer from overnight bladder control problems that result in bed-wetting. If your child is one of them, it’s essential to address and prepare for the issue well in advance of her first sleepover, to prevent any accidents that have the potential to be quite humiliating for her.
  • Coordinate With Hosting Parents – Knowing what activities and outings are planned for your child’s first sleepover allows you to both prepare her for what’s in store and leave her behind with a greater peace of mind than you might have if you weren’t so informed.
  • Pack Accordingly – Coordinating with your child’s hosts allows you to determine what activities are planned, which in turn allows you to make sure that you pack accordingly. Preventing the necessity of a second trip to drop off a forgotten item or your child being left out of an activity she isn’t prepared for is important, both for the sake of convenience and your little one’s experience with her first sleepover.
  • Discuss Dietary Restrictions – Parents of children who suffer from severe food allergies are aware of the importance of preventing any contact with problem foods, but it’s also a good idea to share any personal-choice dietary restrictions with your child’s hosts. For instance, your little vegetarian may suffer from an upset tummy after eating a slice of pepperoni pizza, ruining her evening and forcing you to pick her up early. To prevent such an event, simply discuss dietary restrictions or food sensitivities with hosting parents.

It’s always a good idea to get to know the parents and the child before embarking on a sleepover visit. When children are familiar with their caregivers and environment, they’re more likely to have a grand time. If the adults in charge or the home environment make you feel uncomfortable, you should decline the sleepover invitation.

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