Do you have to invite the whole class to a birthday party? - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 30 Old 01-15-2010, 09:25 PM - Thread Starter
 
taubel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 328
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I am trying to plan my son's 6th birthday party. We are having it at a local gymnastics place. It's a lump sum price for up to 18 kids, and then $7 per additional kid.

In general, I lean toward keeping birthday parties on the small side, no more than 15 kids. I find with smaller parties, there's more quality interaction, less expense and less junky presents!

For this party, I have two of my DS's going, and three additional kids whose parents are friends of ours. So that's five kids already who HAVE to be invited.

There are 19 kids in DS's kindergarten class (10 girls, 9 boys). He wants to invite 4 of the boys (5 including himself), and 4 of the girls. So that would be 9 kids out of a class of 19. We would send the invitations to the kids' homes.

I feel really bad for excluding some of the kids, though! Is it OK to not invite the whole class? I *could* invite the whole class, but then the party would seem to crazy. (Plus I know some of the kids have siblings who might want to come.)

What is the rule of thumb for birthday parties?

Thanks for everyone's opinions! I have to send the invitations out on Monday....
taubel is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
#2 of 30 Old 01-15-2010, 09:43 PM
 
limabean's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 9,431
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 11 Post(s)
Our school's rule of thumb is that if you pass out invitations at school, the whole class needs to be invited, but if you send invitations directly to kids' homes, you can invite fewer kids. I agree with that policy -- we don't have big parties, so we just invite the 3-4 kids that DS plays with regularly from his class and give out the invitations privately.

I think the whole class thing is a crazy expectation to have -- it's fine if some families want to go that route and have giant parties, but it certainly shouldn't be expected.

DH+Me 1994 heartbeat.gif DS 2004 heartbeat.gif DD 2008 heartbeat.gif DDog 2014
limabean is offline  
#3 of 30 Old 01-15-2010, 09:46 PM
 
sunnmama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: surrounded by love
Posts: 6,123
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
The school friend parties dd is invited to tend to have about 6-8 children invited. No one seems to invite the whole class.

I say don't overthink it. If you want a big party, invite everyone and have fun! If you want a smaller party, invite his closest friends and don't stress it
sunnmama is offline  
#4 of 30 Old 01-15-2010, 09:46 PM
 
zinemama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: from the fire roads to the interstate
Posts: 6,298
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Of course it's ok not to invite the whole class! I have never understood why anyone would feel obligated to invite people they don't want and who their dc doesn't play with for such a special event.

(Not knocking people who really want the whole class there, just this sense of obligation I hear about.)

I'm firmly in camp smaller is better when it comes to birthday parties. And as long as you're not passing out invitations at school, you're fine.
zinemama is offline  
#5 of 30 Old 01-15-2010, 10:02 PM
 
rhianna813's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Oregon's green valley
Posts: 855
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
DS is in Kindy and the policy seems to be you can invite whoever you want. But invitations can’t be handed out in front the class. They can be given outside of school OR you can include them your child’s weekly folder and the teacher will transfer them to the kid’s weekly folder. And they don’t usually get into their folders until they are at home.

I would only invite a reasonable amount of kids and of course those my child wants to invite.

Rhianna
rhianna813 is offline  
#6 of 30 Old 01-15-2010, 10:05 PM
 
meemee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Norther California
Posts: 12,623
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 22 Post(s)
i follow our schools policy which pp alluded to. if you are handing over invitations at school then the whole class is invited. if you hand over invitations discreetly then you choose the few you want. i mean even when you invite the whole class - just the ones who really play and interact with your child comes.

 treehugger.gif Co-parent, joy.gifcold.gifbrand new homeschooling middle schoolerjoy.gif, and an attackcat.gif 
meemee is offline  
#7 of 30 Old 01-15-2010, 10:19 PM
 
Momily's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 2,219
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Our school's policy, which I think is a good one, is that if you pass out the invitations at school everyone must be invited. If you invite kids outside of school they strongly encourage you to invite either all the kids, all of one gender, less than half of the kids, or less than half of each gender. It gets hard when parents invite say 9 out of 10 boys, or all the kids but a handful.

Given that, I think you're fine. I might also send a note to the teacher and ask if there's anyone she'd consider excluding. I know one year I only invited my son's close friends. However, his teacher mentioned to me that there was a boy in the class who was new and a little socially awkward, and who really liked my son who was consistently kind to him, this child's mother had commented to the teacher that my son was her child's "only friend" at school. So we invited that kid too. I'm really glad we did because now he and my son are really close friends! I have to say that I'm a special educator and so I'm ubersensitive to those kinds of things, so you might feel like that's going overboard.
Momily is offline  
#8 of 30 Old 01-15-2010, 11:48 PM - Thread Starter
 
taubel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 328
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Wow, thanks for all the quick replies! I am going to go ahead and just invite the 9 kids out of the class of 19. I would feel better if I were only inviting 4 kids out of the class, but DS is very social, and it was difficult to limit him to that number.

I will try to mail the invitations to the kids' homes. And I'm also going to warn my son not to talk about his birthday party at school.

Thanks again!
taubel is offline  
#9 of 30 Old 01-16-2010, 05:27 PM
 
Purple*Lotus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Fluffyville
Posts: 5,572
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
At my school if you hand out invitations at school either all the kids need to be invited or all of the same gender.

ribbonpurple.gif  "And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more than the risk it took to blossom." Anais Nin
   
Purple*Lotus is offline  
#10 of 30 Old 01-17-2010, 05:31 AM
 
eepster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: growing in the Garden State ............
Posts: 8,777
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
It sound like you've decided to go with not inviting the whole class, but I think understanding the reasons behind why some of us do nvite the whole clas might help.

When I asked DS who he wanted to invite to his birthday party, he said "Grandpa and all my friends." Then he went on and on about how all his friends will love grandpa, but wouldn't give me a list of names.

There is a short list of names of friends he did this and that with that I hear from DS when he talks about what he did in school. The other day when I picked DS up from school I momentarily talked to the teacher about his friends and she started off with two names I hadn't heard once from DS as some of his closest buddies.

DS said yes when I asked him if he wanted to invite the kids in his kindergym class. Unfortunately I don't have a class list, so he provided the names. According to DS there is a girl in his class named "Maddegebazee" and someone named "Widenjoe." I know people don't always have traditional names, but I have my doubts about those.

I can't just go with inviting just the boys, or just the kids DS age (multi-age Montessori class) since DS's closest (as best I can tell) friend is a girl from the kindergarteners.

Basically it's just much much easier to give one to everybody in the class, which can just go out in friday folders. Fortunately DS has a small class at school and an even smaller kindergym class. I'm only inviting 3 or 4 other kids (plus grandpa ,) so it's not that over whelming a total number. I think most of these issues will be out grown by next year (this year DS is 3 yo going on 4 yo.)

Timmy's Mommy WARNINGyslexic typing with help of preschooler, beware of typos
eepster is offline  
#11 of 30 Old 01-17-2010, 11:17 AM
 
lucyem's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 2,254
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bunnyflakes View Post
At my school if you hand out invitations at school either all the kids need to be invited or all of the same gender.
This has always been our school policy as well.
lucyem is offline  
#12 of 30 Old 01-18-2010, 01:13 AM
 
MtBikeLover's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Chicago Burbs
Posts: 1,627
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by taubel View Post
I will try to mail the invitations to the kids' homes. And I'm also going to warn my son not to talk about his birthday party at school!
You can try this, but keep in mind that the other 8 will definitely talk about it. There is really no way to keep them quiet about the party - it is too exciting for young kids.
MtBikeLover is offline  
#13 of 30 Old 01-18-2010, 01:49 AM
 
moaningminny's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 219
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
No, you don't have to invite the whole class. I'm really disturbed with the expectations these days that the whole class needs to be invited.

DD1 is turning 5 in March. She's in preschool with 19 other kids, and we just cannot afford to invite all of them. She'll be able to invite 6 or 7. I always use Evite, that way you don't have to worry about mailing invitations or handing them out on the sly.
moaningminny is offline  
#14 of 30 Old 01-18-2010, 05:07 AM
 
octobermom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Yuma AZ
Posts: 5,456
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
There is no school rule here on who can be invited. IF one would like invitations passed out in class the teacher jsut sticks them in the appropiate folders and they are placed in backpacks to be looked at at home. Few kids seem to have parties where all kids are invited most jsut have a few friends.
We prefer the smaller groups.

Deanna

Wife to DH since August 01 mom to a bubbly girl October 2002 and our newest gal March 2010
octobermom is offline  
#15 of 30 Old 01-18-2010, 11:02 AM
 
Kivgaen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 407
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
The rule in my house is the same as the rule that I had when growing up.

For parties, you can invite 1 friend for every year that you are celebrating on your birthday. So for a 6yo party, he can have up to 6 friends.

Believe me, 6 friends is PLENTY.

In my son's last classroom, the teacher told all the parents at the beginning of the school year that she didn't want invitations to be handed out at school unless ALL of the students were invited (which makes sense), so if you don't invite the whole class, make sure that you invite them privately, and not in front of the kids who weren't invited.
Kivgaen is offline  
#16 of 30 Old 01-18-2010, 11:05 AM
 
Kivgaen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 407
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by octobermom View Post
There is no school rule here on who can be invited. IF one would like invitations passed out in class the teacher jsut sticks them in the appropiate folders and they are placed in backpacks to be looked at at home. Few kids seem to have parties where all kids are invited most jsut have a few friends.
We prefer the smaller groups.

Deanna
Not true -- there may not be any official "rule", but each teacher has his or her preferences. My son's last teacher would NOT have done the above unless all the kids were invited. She probably would have confiscated his invitations, and then had a "talking to" with me on the phone that night...
Kivgaen is offline  
#17 of 30 Old 01-18-2010, 02:05 PM
 
busymama77's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 2,103
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I recently went through this as we're planning DS's 4th b-day part for this coming weekend at our house. I asked HIM who he wanted to invite. He gave me 8 names and those 8 kids got invites. Two of them RSPV'd along with two couples that we know and their two kids. So, overall, there will be 7 kids including DS. Which, to me, in my condition (will be 35 weeks preggers at the party) is perfect.

I'm glad I asked DS who he wanted to invite. It included him in his own party planning process.

One happy mama to 1/06 , 3/10 , and married to my best friend
busymama77 is offline  
#18 of 30 Old 01-18-2010, 03:03 PM
 
limabean's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 9,431
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 11 Post(s)
Just don't do what one mom at my DS's preschool did (I'm sure you never ever would, I just have to share this story).

She brought a bunch of invitations to school, without any recipients' names written on the envelopes, and gave the stack to her son, then walked around the playground with him saying, "What about him, do you play with him? Yes? Okay, give him one then. What about her, do you play with her? No? Okay, can you find someone else you play with?" I was horrified.

DH+Me 1994 heartbeat.gif DS 2004 heartbeat.gif DD 2008 heartbeat.gif DDog 2014
limabean is offline  
#19 of 30 Old 01-18-2010, 04:40 PM
 
sunnmama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: surrounded by love
Posts: 6,123
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by limabean View Post
Just don't do what one mom at my DS's preschool did (I'm sure you never ever would, I just have to share this story).

She brought a bunch of invitations to school, without any recipients' names written on the envelopes, and gave the stack to her son, then walked around the playground with him saying, "What about him, do you play with him? Yes? Okay, give him one then. What about her, do you play with her? No? Okay, can you find someone else you play with?" I was horrified.
I can see that it isn't ideal, but horrified? Why? It sounds like the child didn't know the names of the children he played with
sunnmama is offline  
#20 of 30 Old 01-18-2010, 05:06 PM
 
eepster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: growing in the Garden State ............
Posts: 8,777
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by busymama77 View Post
I recently went through this as we're planning DS's 4th b-day part for this coming weekend at our house. I asked HIM who he wanted to invite. He gave me 8 names and those 8 kids got invites. Two of them RSPV'd along with two couples that we know and their two kids. So, overall, there will be 7 kids including DS. Which, to me, in my condition (will be 35 weeks preggers at the party) is perfect.

I'm glad I asked DS who he wanted to invite. It included him in his own party planning process.
Congratulations on having such a cooperative child. I wish it had gone as well with DS.

Timmy's Mommy WARNINGyslexic typing with help of preschooler, beware of typos
eepster is offline  
#21 of 30 Old 01-18-2010, 05:11 PM
 
eepster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: growing in the Garden State ............
Posts: 8,777
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by limabean View Post
Just don't do what one mom at my DS's preschool did (I'm sure you never ever would, I just have to share this story).

She brought a bunch of invitations to school, without any recipients' names written on the envelopes, and gave the stack to her son, then walked around the playground with him saying, "What about him, do you play with him? Yes? Okay, give him one then. What about her, do you play with her? No? Okay, can you find someone else you play with?" I was horrified.
Not only is that really rude, but preschoolers can be so in the here and now, that they will pick kids they want to play with right now and exclude kids they actually are friends with just b/c they don't want to play with them that minute.

Timmy's Mommy WARNINGyslexic typing with help of preschooler, beware of typos
eepster is offline  
#22 of 30 Old 01-18-2010, 07:06 PM
 
limabean's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 9,431
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 11 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by sunnmama View Post
I can see that it isn't ideal, but horrified? Why? It sounds like the child didn't know the names of the children he played with
Gosh, there's an epidemic on MDC in the past few days of people nitpicking over word choice. How about: I thought it was very insensitive and rude, and cannot imagine making the decision to have my son walk around waving his birthday invitations in his classmates' faces and only giving them out to some of them. Better?

DH+Me 1994 heartbeat.gif DS 2004 heartbeat.gif DD 2008 heartbeat.gif DDog 2014
limabean is offline  
#23 of 30 Old 01-18-2010, 09:11 PM
 
babymommy2's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Canada
Posts: 405
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
In my son's last classroom, the teacher told all the parents at the beginning of the school year that she didn't want invitations to be handed out at school unless ALL of the students were invited (which makes sense), so if you don't invite the whole class, make sure that you invite them privately, and not in front of the kids who weren't invited.
How do you do this? I live in a city and so don't know the parents in the kids school, and several take the bus so may not see them at pick up, and the school certainly doesn't provide anyone with any names or addresses or even phone numbers because of confidentiality laws, so how do you privately send an invitation? I gave the invites to the teacher to put in the weekly envelope, but I know some of the kids hand out the invites themselves to the children they want to invite. No one has had an all class birthday yet.
babymommy2 is offline  
#24 of 30 Old 01-18-2010, 09:13 PM
 
limabean's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 9,431
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 11 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by babymommy2 View Post
How do you do this? I live in a city and so don't know the parents in the kids school, and several take the bus so may not see them at pick up, and the school certainly doesn't provide anyone with any names or addresses or even phone numbers because of confidentiality laws, so how do you privately send an invitation? I gave the invites to the teacher to put in the weekly envelope, but I know some of the kids hand out the invites themselves to the children they want to invite. No one has had an all class birthday yet.
At DS's school, each teacher sends out an e-mail early in the year saying that she'd like to put together a class contact list for those who wish to participate. You can provide as much or little info as you'd like: nothing, just e-mail, just phone, phone/address/e-mail, etc. In DS's current class, every parent provided at least one form of contact, so we'd be able to selectively invite his classmates in a discreet manner if we chose to.

DH+Me 1994 heartbeat.gif DS 2004 heartbeat.gif DD 2008 heartbeat.gif DDog 2014
limabean is offline  
#25 of 30 Old 01-18-2010, 10:04 PM
 
eepster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: growing in the Garden State ............
Posts: 8,777
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by babymommy2 View Post
How do you do this? I live in a city and so don't know the parents in the kids school, and several take the bus so may not see them at pick up, and the school certainly doesn't provide anyone with any names or addresses or even phone numbers because of confidentiality laws, so how do you privately send an invitation? I gave the invites to the teacher to put in the weekly envelope, but I know some of the kids hand out the invites themselves to the children they want to invite. No one has had an all class birthday yet.
DS's school has a directory. If a parent doesn't want to be in it they check off a box on the registration form other wise there is a full listing for each student; student name, classroom, parent/guardian name, address, phone #, email.

Timmy's Mommy WARNINGyslexic typing with help of preschooler, beware of typos
eepster is offline  
#26 of 30 Old 01-18-2010, 10:50 PM
 
sunnmama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: surrounded by love
Posts: 6,123
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by limabean View Post
Gosh, there's an epidemic on MDC in the past few days of people nitpicking over word choice. How about: I thought it was very insensitive and rude, and cannot imagine making the decision to have my son walk around waving his birthday invitations in his classmates' faces and only giving them out to some of them. Better?
I honestly didn't think what the mom did sounded so terrible. At preschool age, it doesn't strike me as very rude, since the child didn't seem to know the names of his friends, but I guess I'm just not as sensitive to these issues as others.

My dd's school hands out the directory at the end of the year (big help! lol). The teacher's official policy is to put invites in their folders, but in reality invites get handed out on the school bus, on the playground, in the cafeteria, in the bus line....basically, the kids distribute them on their own, anyway. They just don't do it in class (as per the rules).

eta--another issue is that children might want to invite kids not in their class. For instance, my dd's 9th birthday is next month. She's inviting 2 girls from her class, 2 from another 3rd grade class (same school), and 1 girl from a 4th grade class (same school). Her teacher probably wouldn't want the hassle of distributing those invites.
sunnmama is offline  
#27 of 30 Old 01-18-2010, 11:33 PM
 
Tigerchild's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Seattle Eastside
Posts: 4,737
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
We have had both kinds of parties (small home parties and all-class parties).

Even if you don't THINK that your child will talk about their party or that kids their age won't lord it over those who weren't invited (I would say that most people would be shocked at how often that happens), I think that it's definitely NOT too early, even at 4 or 5, to start to talk about party host etiquette.

I explained to my kids that when they have home parties and we can't invite anyone, that means that you don't talk about the party at school. You don't tease anyone about the party, and if you hear anyone teasing someone who wasn't invited, you should say that it isn't okay to treat others in a way that is hurtful. I've also explained to my kids starting this year that if I hear them using a party to bully others, then I will cancel the party.

Since I'm with 1st and 2nd graders 4 days out of 5 in a school setting, I know that I overhear these 5-8 year olds do that sort of thing constantly. I'm sure it happens with older kids too. Birthday invites shouldn't be looked at as a social minefield on the parent's part--but rather a way to start teaching your kids about etiquette and treating others kindly. Sooner or later, your kid will be upset that he wasn't invited to party, and most people will have to make the decision to exclude a good, sweet kid sooner or later as well. I think it's vitally important to teach your kids that they probably shouldn't take offense or assume someone doesn't like them if they're not invited; and at the same time when THEY must or decide to have a smaller party they must do as much as they can to not hurt other people's feelings.

So I would say that I don't feel inviting a whole class is an obligation. I certainly don't feel that way and don't do that as a rule. However, it is absolutely a parent's obligation to teach their kids party etiquette. Will they "get" it between the ages of 4-6? No, not all at once, but I do think that it's important to remind and talk about it during that time so that it becomes a habit as they get older and when the hurt can really go deep if kids never learn how to do that. It doesn't happen by osmosis.
Tigerchild is offline  
#28 of 30 Old 01-19-2010, 02:37 AM
 
limabean's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 9,431
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 11 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by sunnmama View Post
I honestly didn't think what the mom did sounded so terrible. At preschool age, it doesn't strike me as very rude, since the child didn't seem to know the names of his friends, but I guess I'm just not as sensitive to these issues as others.
There are plenty of better ways to determine which kids your kid plays with or wants to invite. You could discreetly pull him to the side at pick-up time and quietly ask him to point out which friends he'd like to invite, then bring invitations for them the next day. Walking around with invitations and saying right in front of each classmate, "Yes, give one to her. No, don't give one to him. Yes, give one to him, but not him" ... is rude. I don't see how anyone could see it as okay, but clearly some people do, since the kid's mom at my DS's preschool obviously didn't have a problem doing it.

DH+Me 1994 heartbeat.gif DS 2004 heartbeat.gif DD 2008 heartbeat.gif DDog 2014
limabean is offline  
#29 of 30 Old 01-19-2010, 04:19 AM
 
Kirsten's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Washington state
Posts: 5,362
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
If you deliver invites at school, yes the whole class must be invited. If you deliver invites through the post office or email, you can invite part of the class - but not everyone but two or three kids, not all boys but one, etc.

The example of handing out blank invites on the playground is HORRIBLE. The kids have EARS.... they can hear the mom asking "do you play with him? No? Ok, don't give him one then." HOW is that ok? I don't expect kids to naturally click with everyone, but you must be kind. Basic human courtesy.
In that situation, I'd email the teacher and ask her if the child couldn't come up with the names. Explain the situation, and ask who he plays with, mentioning specific kids as you can - "he says he always plays matchbox cars with one little boy, and in the sandbox with a boy who loves dinosaurs". If he can't give even the basic info about a child, then don't invite school kids.
Kirsten is offline  
#30 of 30 Old 01-19-2010, 06:32 AM
 
DariusMom's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: I've been in the lowlands too long
Posts: 2,276
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tigerchild View Post
We have had both kinds of parties (small home parties and all-class parties).

Even if you don't THINK that your child will talk about their party or that kids their age won't lord it over those who weren't invited (I would say that most people would be shocked at how often that happens), I think that it's definitely NOT too early, even at 4 or 5, to start to talk about party host etiquette.

I explained to my kids that when they have home parties and we can't invite anyone, that means that you don't talk about the party at school. You don't tease anyone about the party, and if you hear anyone teasing someone who wasn't invited, you should say that it isn't okay to treat others in a way that is hurtful. I've also explained to my kids starting this year that if I hear them using a party to bully others, then I will cancel the party.

Since I'm with 1st and 2nd graders 4 days out of 5 in a school setting, I know that I overhear these 5-8 year olds do that sort of thing constantly. I'm sure it happens with older kids too. Birthday invites shouldn't be looked at as a social minefield on the parent's part--but rather a way to start teaching your kids about etiquette and treating others kindly. Sooner or later, your kid will be upset that he wasn't invited to party, and most people will have to make the decision to exclude a good, sweet kid sooner or later as well. I think it's vitally important to teach your kids that they probably shouldn't take offense or assume someone doesn't like them if they're not invited; and at the same time when THEY must or decide to have a smaller party they must do as much as they can to not hurt other people's feelings.

So I would say that I don't feel inviting a whole class is an obligation. I certainly don't feel that way and don't do that as a rule. However, it is absolutely a parent's obligation to teach their kids party etiquette. Will they "get" it between the ages of 4-6? No, not all at once, but I do think that it's important to remind and talk about it during that time so that it becomes a habit as they get older and when the hurt can really go deep if kids never learn how to do that. It doesn't happen by osmosis.
I love this post. You articulate so well what I feel. It's incumbent upon us, as parents, to model good party etiquette. If I'm only having a few people over for a small dinner party, I'm not going to talk about said dinner party in front of other people I didn't invite. Just not nice and not cool. Kids have to learn this, and they need to learn this from us.

Admittedly, this is a hot button issue for me. It is against the policy of DS' school to pass out invitations at school (plus, the school provides a contact list at the beginning of the year). However, parents have been passing out invitations at school. I've contacted the principal, the parent commission, talked to DS' teacher, and talked to the "class parents" (we have three who organize activities) to get the word out that this is just not ok. Let's hope it works.

Quote:
Originally Posted by limabean View Post
There are plenty of better ways to determine which kids your kid plays with or wants to invite. You could discreetly pull him to the side at pick-up time and quietly ask him to point out which friends he'd like to invite, then bring invitations for them the next day. Walking around with invitations and saying right in front of each classmate, "Yes, give one to her. No, don't give one to him. Yes, give one to him, but not him" ... is rude. I don't see how anyone could see it as okay, but clearly some people do, since the kid's mom at my DS's preschool obviously didn't have a problem doing it.
Excellent advice to solve the problem.
DariusMom is offline  
Reply

User Tag List



Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off