Here's my take for a Stress Free Party!
Kids can't read the names on the Valentines!
Simple Solution - I have my students only fill out the cards as FROM. So everyone takes their cards and just puts one in everyones box.
Everyone wants to bring something!
Some teachers assign items to all kids or certain kids, some teachers say no treats. I never know what to do! I don't want tons of treats but I don't want nothing! Oh and everyone wants to bring the cupcakes! The kids love those cupcakes but not all kids eat them from my experience.
Simple Solution - Ask for items that can be stored away and used as snacks later. Sometimes I ask for pre-wrapped carrots, apples, crackers, pretzels, goldfish, and the list goes on and on. All of those things could easily be stored away and used later. A teacher once said to me "if they bring it in I am going to serve it." I don't necessarily agree with this... I don't think the kids are going to notice and if they do you just kindly say "we have a ton of food, could we save yours for tomorrow or later this week as another special snack."
I personally as a mom feel involved by being allowed to bring items to school for my son. So for me I don't like to limit who can bring in items. For some parents this may be the only way they can be involved in class!
Valentines are everywhere and mixed up!
The kids get so excited about opening their valentines. But they get all mixed up at their tables and it becomes an argument over whose puppy valentine it is! Ahhh Gheeez!
Simple Solution - Some years I let my kids open them and some years I don't... it really depends on how they are at following directions. If I do not allow, hey they still exchanged them and they will still have fun opening them at home with their families! If I do allow it, I model my expectation with my own valentines box! One card out at a time... you can not have more than one out of the box!
We also store our valentines away from our desks. We literally line them up along a wall until party time and after. They grab their box on the way out the door!
Parties are a mess!
Trash everywhere, boxes everywhere. Chaos at the end of the day is NO FUN!
Simple Solution - Pack your kids up before you party! 100% packed up and ready to go. When it's time to leave you just grab you backpack and box and go. Butcher paper on your tables is a must. I love this because it makes the classroom look festive! Then just roll up the paper and put it right in the trash. Last is magic trash... tell kids there is a piece of magic trash on the floor and the person who finds it gets a treat. But - they can't show you or it's not magic. I literally just keep saying.. "Oh I still see it" until all the trash is picked up. We talk a lot about being happy for people who get picked and not being able to be picked every time. My kids now will say things like "Oh good Jack, you got picked!" (I love it!)
Do you have any tips? Comment them below!