Published : 22/03/2012 09:00:38
Categories : Party Planning and Entertainment
Planning a child's birthday party should be fun, but often it's fraught with concerns about how best to plan, prepare and supervise the party so that everyone has fun, without it ending up costing you a fortune, costing you friendships or costing you hours in explanations. Etiquette isn't something we normally think about when picturing a child's birthday party, but this really just refers to those unwritten rules which can be extremely useful in helping to keep everything in check. The trouble though of course with unwritten rules is that they're very rarely written down. I suppose that's to be expected, but in a break from tradition we're going to commit three of these unwritten rules about planning a child's birthday party to words on paper. Or at least, illuminated pixels on a screen. But you get the idea.
This is often something a few parents feel under obligation to do, but really it makes little sense. After all, your child didn't choose their classmates, and it would be very unusual indeed if they actually got on with every single other child in the class. There's always going to be one or two children they don't get on with, and if you go ahead and invite the entire class except for those one or two children it looks extremely pointed, and could cause further problems. So forget having to invite the whole class, and keep the party invitations restricted just to those children your child is friends with.
Did you know that there's a formula you can use to work out how many children to invite to your child's birthday party? Of course, you're free to stray from this rule, but it's a good guide at least. The rule is to invite as many children as your child's age, plus one. So if your child is six years old, or will be on their birthday, then they can send out seven invitations, making eight children in all. This means that at four years old you have just six children to handle, but when they're ten you have twelve children. The idea here is simply that as children get older they need less supervision, and so it's easier to cope.
Again, it's a rule you can stray from in certain situations, but some parents do sometimes feel under obligation to allow brothers and sisters of those being invited to a party to come along too. If your child is turning eight, and every one of their friends brings a brother or sister you quickly end up with around twenty children. That doubles the number of party bags, and increases the cost of things such as prizes and food. Not only that but they will invariably not know each other, and you could have a wide difference in ages to cope with as well. At this sort of age even a year or two can make a massive difference. Keep things simple, and just invite your child's friends.