If you’ve been picked to host your mother’s group or playgroup Christmas party, we’ve gathered some easy food ideas and festive activities to keep toddlers and pre-schoolers happily engaged, while you enjoy a coffee and a chat with the other parents. Wishful thinking? Well… you never know until you try!
1. Festive (pre-schooler friendly) Christmas food
A mix of sweet, savoury, healthy and treat foods is a good combination for your Christmas party food table. Here’s some quick and easy ideas that children will love, and may be able to help with before the party.
Christmas shaped fairy bread
If you’re short on time, this fairy bread Christmas tree is simplicity itself! Make it ahead of time, freeze and pull it out of the freezer about half an hour before you serve it. For an alternative, you can use cookie cutters to cut the fairy bread into Christmas shapes. It’s also the perfect option for “bring a plate” functions for kids.
Christmas shaped fruit
Fruit offers a healthy snack on the Christmas food table, and is so much more appealing when served in a Christmassy way! There are many possible variations on this theme, and pinterest is full of ideas, but here’s two that will delight the kids.
Melting snowman biscuits
These are sure to be a big hit when you serve them up at your Christmas party! Best of all, the melting snowman biscuits are easy to prepare.
2. Festive (pre-schooler friendly) Christmas activities
Depending on the age of your children and the length of the party, you probably only need two or three activities to keep the children busy. Here’s some inspiration:
Christmas dress-ups and photo props
For lots of giggles, fill a basket with Christmas dress ups and props. Hang an empty photo frame (no glass) from the ceiling and encourage the kids to pose for some funny photos! If you have a Polaroid camera, this makes a cute keepsake for every child to take with them from the party.
Have the gingerbread baked and cooled – gingerbread men, Christmas trees and stars work well -and then lay them out on a table with icing and decorations. The kids can then busy themselves with icing, decorating and eating their delicious creations.
Reindeer food making
Paper bags and some tubs of Santa’s reindeers’ favourite foods are all you need for this cute activity! Kids can scoop the different foods into the bag and sprinkle the mixture onto their lawn on Christmas eve to help guide the reindeers to their home. And if you’ve always been curious about what reindeers eat, here’s the lowdown: rolled oats, millet, flying powder (bicarb soda), magic crystals (jelly crystals) and rainbow sprinkles (hundreds and thousands), just to name a few!
Here’s a cute poem printable that you can stick to your paper bags. Do your own or you can click the image below for the PDF printable file.
Sprinkle on your lawn at night,
The moon will make it sparkle bright,
As Santa’s reindeer fly and roam,
Christmas pasta necklaces
Kids can make these Christmas pasta necklaces as a gift for someone special, or as a piece of jewellery to wear themselves.
Musical statues to Christmas carols
Get your kids to help you pick a Christmas carols playlist for the party. Musical statues is a great game to keep up your sleeve if the children are becoming restless. Simply play the Christmas carols, encourage the children to dance along to the tunes, and when the music stops, every child must freeze! As this is a party for younger children, there is no need to sit them out for being the last child to freeze. Little ones will be happy enough with the basics of dancing and freezing, and you’ll avoid any tears.
Salt dough Christmas decorations
You can involve the kids at any step along the way when making these Salt dough Christmas decorations. For a party with younger children, you may like to make them ahead of time, and get the kids to decorate them with paint and glitter. Do this at the beginning of the party, so that they’re dry by the time everyone leaves.
3. Christmas loot bag/party favour
It’s lovely to send kids home with a little something at the end of the party. And because they may have already consumed their fair share of junk food, it’s a good idea to pick something that they can play with, rather than something to eat. A tub of playdough, whether homemade or store bought, is perfect for pre-schoolers, along with this cute printable.
Have a won-dough-ful Christmas!