Great “tween” Party Ideas

Still dishing out the same old party themes for your kids? How about the “tween” in the family? For the next birthday, make the party most memorable for your 12-year-old. These party ideas will set you apart as the coolest mom and dad in the block.

Party Uppers

Children ages 9 to 12 are at an awkward age, but give them a fun party and they’ll lap it up. Since they are not official teenagers and no longer the little ones, giving them a party they can enjoy can tax your imagination and stamina. These tween party ideas will give your tween star status in the neighborhood.

Let the tween in you help you along these party ideas. If you’ve decided to host a Safari Sleepover, schedule it on a Friday night. The timing is right. The kids can catch some extra zzzs after a night of fun. But be sure to announce that the pick-up time for the kids is at 10 the following day.

An outdoor sleepover is a good idea, but for the kids’ safety, have the tents installed indoors. Put up a hotdog and harshmallow grill, but don’t forget to add a salad and animal-shaped sandwiches. Fill GI canteens with juice and distribute them among the guests. Let them whoop it up in the lawn – dancing and organized games – until you announce that it’s bedtime. Girls should be separated from boys if it’s a mixed party.

A tween party idea young girls enjoy is the “pajama dress-up” party. The girls can bring along their blings. Let them have a go at putting up makeup and do other girly things they all want to do – fix their hair, paint their nail with fun colors, and do a pajama fashion show. Of course, expect the girls to stay up late watching videos, swapping ghost stories, and doing just about anything. Girls are wont to do that when they are together.

If your tween loves to rock, she or he will be inviting like-minded friends. Host a rock party they won’t forget. A ’70s disco-themed party is a novel experience for the young ones. Clear the living room, install a disco globe, and get dance music they’ll rock to. To make it more authentic, hire a neighborhood DJ who can do the spinning. Be sure to keep a bottomless supply of the kids’ favorite eats, drinks, and munchies.

A beach party theme is also a welcome idea, whether you have a pool or not. Decorate the party venue with shell wired garlands, paper balls, mock palm trees, and surfboards. Prepare more than a dozen rubber slippers. Use colorful fish platters to serve your beach fare. Ask the guests to come in their favorite beach bum attire. If you have a pool, make sure that a lifeguard is around to watch over the kids.

Before the Party

Schedule the party on a weekend before the actual birthday. Get invitations to go with the party theme. A pillow invitation for a sleep over, a papier mache conch shell for the beach party, and a map invitation for the safari or treasure hunt party. Shop for party favors and ask your tween for the type of music he or she wants for the party. To make your shopping a convenient jaunt, have your money organized in one of those money clip wallets, and bring along the list of things you must buy for the party.

Call up the parents and ask for any restrictions on movies to watch and any food allergies to avoid potential problems. To help you out, ask the neighbors’ tweens to come over. They’ll enjoy the party too. If you have smaller kids, let them have a guest or two so they won’t feel left out of the fun.

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