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Birthday Party Manners

Okay, so the time is coming that Giorgia is going to hit the Birthday Circuit (but I hope not) so I thought I would start preparing her now. I found the article below here.
Your child has been invited to yet another birthday party. Gone are the days when she required you to stick around for the entire party and now says you can leave the second you drop her off at the door. You secretly hope she remembers her manners and doesn't take over the gift-opening duties for the birthday child!

Some basic rules
The best way to prepare your child for a party is to go over a few basic rules, maybe engage in a bit of role play, and then let her go!

Here are some of the most important manners your child should know when attending a birthday party:
1. Make sure your child says hello to the parents (or other party hosts) as soon as she's arrived. That way, they know she's there and may not have to wait for anyone else in order to get the party started.
2. Have your child take off his or her shoes when entering the house.
3. If there is no designated area to put the birthday gift, your child should ask where he should place it.
4. Remind your child she is to be on her best behavior when she's a guest at another person's home. She should use her inside voice if indoors and not yell, scream or be obnoxious.
5. If your child becomes ill at a birthday party, have the host call you and immediately go to pick up your child. Make sure you write down your phone number and put it in your child's pocket or on the counter near the telephone.
6. Tell your child that just because some children may start jumping on the couch or bed it is not okay for him to do so unless he has permission from the parents. Sometimes children behave at other people's homes as they do at their own and may not realize their actions are inappropriate.
7. Tell your son or daughter to remember their manners. "Yes please" and "No, thank you" should be the polite answer to "Would you like something to drink?" or "Would you like a piece of cake?" instead of a nod or a shake of the head.
8. When it's time to open presents, under no circumstances is your child to lay a finger on the birthday child's gift, even if she is struggling to open it. Maybe your child could ask the parent for some scissors to help snip a tight ribbon instead. Nothing spoils the birthday child's special day more than having to fight other children for the right to open her own gift. Remind your child that she too will have, or already has had a birthday where she opened all her gifts without any help from her guests.
9. Make sure your child knows that once the gifts are opened, they belong to the birthday child and it is up to them to decide when they will be removed from the packaging. Think of how the birthday child might feel if after the party, all of his gifts have been taken out of their boxes and are left strewn around the house. The gifts have suddenly lost their newness and appeal.
10. When being served food that your child might not be familiar with, teach him to say "no thank you" instead of "yuck." Not only will he seem rude, he may hurt the parents' feelings. Much planning and preparation goes into organizing a birthday party, and parents usually rack their brains thinking of food that will appeal the majority of children attending the party.
11. At the end of the birthday party, make sure your child thanks the parents and the birthday child for inviting her. Pick her up at the appointed time and make a quick exit. The parents will surely be exhausted. They may also have a family party planned for that evening.
The benefits of being a good birthday party guest
One of the ways you can ensure your child remains on everyone's guest list is to teach her how to be a good guest. You will know how your child has behaved by what the host tells you at the end of the party. If they sing your child's praises and are impressed by his behavior, then you have done your job. If not, then it's back to the drawing board!


Paula said...

Jess is 4; she's a LONG way from being left at the party by herself. I don't like that trend. I expect parents to stay at my house at Jess's party and I expect to stay with her at theirs. I agree with most of the rules but not taking your shoes off as soon as you get into the house. I find it rude when people require others to take their shoes off (my mother was one of those people). The parent may prefer that the children aren't running around barefoot (oils from feet bother some people) or in socks (too slippery on wood floors). In my house, you can do what you want but I know others who are very particular.

A rule for the birthday host should be to not say "I already have that." or "Oh" and toss the gift to the side and rip open the next.

Debra said...

I agree with all of this. My girls are 5 and 8 and we have been to MANY parties and have had many. I still do not leave my children at the childs house or party place alone. I really don't think that they should be left until 9 or 10. It is just too scary. Not so much for my girls behavior, (not that they are angels, but they behave so much better when I am not there), but because I don't feel that 2-4 adults to 20 or more children is enough to make sure my child is safe.
I think these rules should be for the adults as well! ha!

Debra said...

Oh yeah, I always have my girls say Thank You to the parents and to the birthday child before leaving. I do as well.

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