Ten tips to help take the stress out of planning your next teen party!
10 teen party planning tips
Gone are the days when balloons and party hats did the trick. Teen parties require a dissimilar attitude and all new considerations. The dynamics are quite different once a child reaches this stage in their development. What was once considered exciting is now viewed as childish. There are a few tips that can help you plan a safe and successful teen party.
1. Safety still rules
While you must concede that changes are in order, do not offer flexibility on safety measures. Set your boundaries for chaperones, off-limits areas, language and behavior immediately in the planning phase and make sure everyone understands these rules. It may be a good idea to post the rules in the party area and point them out to the guests when they arrive.
2. Be open to suggestions
Assuming a particular theme for the party may put an early damper on the event. Have your teen sit down and participate in a discussion on what they are expecting and they feel it can best be accomplished. Certainly be prepared to discourage or even reject ideas that are outside your scope of acceptability, but when rejecting an idea be prepared to offer a workable alternative.
3. Create a party area
Unless you like red punch stains on your freshly shampooed carpet, it’s a good idea to plan ahead on the area for your party. This tip applies to safety issues as well. If the party is in your home, move antique or expensive furniture out of the party area when possible. The same applies to breakables and family heirlooms. Create as open a space as possible with ample seating for games and dancing. Folding chairs work beautifully. Teens rarely offer decorating compliments so don’t be overly concerned with the décor. A few strands of lights can change the ambiance of the dullest room.
4. Food and Drinks
There’s no need to overwhelm teens with rich appetizers and cheese trays. Chips, dip, cookies or brownies should suffice, however, if you’re having a theme party the snacks and drinks can easily lend themselves to the theme. If, for example, you’re having a Hawaiian luau party, fresh fruit trays, coconut macaroons and punch with umbrella straws work beautifully.
5. The Guest List
Establish your guest limit early in the planning phase. Have your teen make a list of guests within the established limit. Party invitations can be handled by directly distributing them or postal mail. E-mailing invitations is a little tricky, as they might get forwarded to others whom you weren’t expecting.
Make sure your guests have transportation to and from the party for the established start and pick-up times. Do not allow guests to suddenly decide to catch a ride with each other unless you have prior knowledge of such an arrangement.
Actively involve your teen in preparing activities for the party. Keep in mind physical limitations of any guests and the amount of space you have to work with. Have a wide selection of music available. If guests should bring music you may want to be sure it is appropriate before allowing it to be played, especially with young teens.
It is essential that you closely supervise the party, even though teens most often feel they have outgrown the need for it. Keep close enough to monitor activities easily but don’t take up the center of the room.
9. Friendly Neighborhood Warning
It is a good idea to let your neighbors know when the party will take place and when it will be over. Affording them this respect will often get you the understanding you’re looking for.
10. Clean Up – It Takes Two, Baby!
This is a fantastic opportunity to show your teen the value of a trade-off. Elicit their help in cleaning the party area. This can also be a great time to talk and discuss how the party went. Parents are always looking for those communication openers with teens and this could be a great one!