Before the Party

Count carefully & have more than enough. "Expect the unexpected" is a basic rule of party experts. Prepare extra food and supplies in case something spills or a guest is extra hungry. Give every guest the same party favor to minimize disappointments. Gather enough art supplies so children can make more than one creation or can start over if they want.

Limit the number of guests and plan extra helpers. A good rule of thumb for kids' parties is to have as many guests as the host's age. For a 6-year-old's party, invite six other children. You'll be more relaxed, the kids will get the right amount of attention, and you'll be able to control the pace of the party better. If you really must invite the whole class, enlist more adult help. Often teenagers who have babysitting experience are great party helpers. Sometimes you can volunteer for another family's party and in exchange they will help you. Pick helpers who know the children or at least enjoy working with them.