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  • How to Plan a Fun Classroom Birthday Party (Your Child's Teacher Is Not the Party Planner)

    Here's your basic checklist for planning a birthday party in school.
    by Kate Borbon .
How to Plan a Fun Classroom Birthday Party (Your Child's Teacher Is Not the Party Planner)
PHOTO BY iStock
  • Though some families may still prefer to celebrate their child's birthday among family and friends, kids who go to school often like the idea of having a birthday party in school where they can have fun with their friends and teachers.

    Your basic checklist for planning a classroom party

    1. Talk to your child’s teacher.

    No school party will be possible without the help of your child's teacher who will know the school’s guidelines and restrictions for classroom parties. You want to know from her how much time you have to prepare AND to clean up after the party. (Yes, you have to help with the cleanup and should not expect the teachers solely clean up after the party.)

    Clarify the types of activities that you can plan, the decorations you can use if you want to put up some and the number of students in the class as well as the teachers and staff.

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    Don't forget to ask your child’s teacher if there are students who have dietary issues or food allergies.

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    2. Send out the party invitations.

    Your teacher isn't in charge of spreading the news. Make a point to send a simple invitation to your co-parents. If the party is following a specific theme, you can use it as an anchor for the different details of the event, including the invitations, the decorations, the cake, the activities, and even the snacks.

    3. Don't go overboard with the party program. 

    Remember, it's still a school and your time for the party is likely during recess or snack time. If you have a party program, keep it short and simple. You can go for classic, age-appropriate party games all kids will enjoy, like “Trip to Jerusalem” or “Stop Dance.”

    You may even opt for craft-making activities. Not only will that be fun and educational for the kids, but their finished works can also be cute little items for them to take home after the party!

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    4. Create a menu.

    Food is probably the detail you will spend time on the most. Sandwiches are often the go-to party food, but it can take time to prepare. Most parents find it more convenient to purchase pre-packaged meals (check out these customized bento boxes meant for school parties). If you prepare home-cooked meals, make sure you place inside disposable meal containers along with the necessary utensils.

    5. If you're playing a game, make sure to bring the party supplies and props.

    Don't assume your child's teacher will have the craft supplies just because the party is in a classroom.

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    6. Look for volunteers

    It may only be for a maximum of 30 minutes, but a classroom party can still be a lot of work. Don't make the mistake of relying just on your child's teacher. Remember, she has to manage 15 excited students at a minimum. So ask for help even from the parents of your child’s classmates. After compiling a list of tasks and supplies that you need to buy, divide the responsibilities among the group.

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    7. Relax and have fun

    On the day of the party, don’t forget to have fun! Amid the bustle of preparations and making sure everything is going smoothly, the occasion is meant to be a celebration of your child’s special day, so relax and enjoy yourself. As the organizer of the event, you can set the tone of the party, so if everyone sees you in a good mood, they will also be encouraged to have fun!

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