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4 Reasons Not to Invite the Whole Class to Your Preschooler's Party

4 Reasons Not to Invite the Whole Class to Your Preschooler's Party

4 Reasons Not to Invite the Whole Class to Your Preschooler's Party

It's your preschooler's birthday, and like every mom, you want to throw a party to remember. You're thinking of inviting your child's new school friends in addition to your own family and friends. But many preschools encourage parents to invite their child's entire class as a way of preventing hurt feelings and discouraging exclusive socializing. What do you do?

Faced with burgeoning guest lists, many Circle of Moms members are wondering how to make the transition from family-centric birthday celebrations to parties that revolve around their child's new world of friends. How important is to include the whole class? As Brandi S. points out, a small gathering can very quickly escalate into a big one when the class includes 18 kids: "I would invite them all, [but there's] just not enough time, space, or money for that, so [my daughter will] have to choose a couple of children she really likes to play with at school." Still, she's not sure how others will react if she only invites a selectd few. "Is this okay?" she asks other Circle of Mom members.

Reason #1: Big Crowds Aren't Fun for Your Child

There are many reasons you may want to keep a party for a child in their preschool years small, the foremost of which is that a large party is often not fun for a small child. Jane M. is among several Circle of Moms members who suggest that moms of preschoolers keep the party small because "expanding the guest list doesn't make sense." As she puts it, "At three years old, a large party (with the whole preschool class) is just overwhelming for the child. They have no earthly idea what's going on, except there are a ton of people there."



Reason #2: Too Many Parents and Siblings

Sharon C. plans to invite her son's entire preschool class almost 20 kids to his party this year, and to rent a bouncing tent for the bash. But she's worried about tiny party-crashers: "I am wondering how to word an invitation that invites my son's preschool classmates only, and not siblings. Quite frankly, I am not interested in entertaining small siblings of his friends, especially if they might get caught in the crossfire of 5-year-olds in a bouncer. In fact, I would not even have a problem if parents want to drop their kids off and come back for them later on."

As she points out, you may think you're only inviting classmates, but you should expect a classmate's parents and siblings to stick around as well, especially if the child doesn't know your family well. The intimate party you hoped for can easily turn into a chaotic, all-ages bash.

Reason #3: Acquaintances Don't RSVP

If Ms. Manners could weigh in, she would have lots to say about the fact that preschool parents are slackers when it comes to RSVPing for birthday parties, says seasoned mega-bash thrower Sharon G. It makes planning appropriately "a logistical nightmare," she says, explaining further that, "One or two parents will RSVP and then half to three-fourths of the invitees will show up." She's taken to chasing down parents in the school parking lot: "I get their phone numbers and call them the night before to confirm they will show up," she says.

Michele M. had a similar lack of responses when she invited all of her son's daycare peers. "I invited his entire daycare class (22 kids) to his birthday party," but a week before the party she had only one response. She adds that another parent invited 16 kids "and only two responded."

This breach of manners is enough for some Circle of Moms members to call it quits on plans to include their child's entire class. Arlene G. says. "In the future I would only invite a few chosen friends from school and your family."


Reason # 4: It's Too Expensive

Finally, the main reason not to invite the entire bunch comes down to the cost, says Brandy K. "My daughter is turning two this weekend and we have had a rough winter, so I am trying to give her the best birthday I can without spending too much money."

To keep party costs in check, she made everything from scratch and is paring down the guest list. "[I'm] hoping that by having a small party for my child, I will be having a party he will really love and remember."

Related Reading: Birthday Party 101: How Much Should You Spend?

Do you feel obligated to invite the entire preschool class?

Image Source: CmdPhotos via Flickr/Creative Commons

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, and should not be attributed to, POPSUGAR.

ShortyFatty1369809859 ShortyFatty1369809859 4 years
You are absolutely right. If there are lots of preschoolers together, they will be really disturbing.
MichalAhavaGoldchmit MichalAhavaGoldchmit 6 years
I get the point but at pre school it is really unfair to invite some kids and not the others.
KarenSheppo KarenSheppo 6 years
Please consider giving out invites to parents away from kindy and school... if you plan to invite the whole class dont ever forget 1 child..... Disappointment is part of life but the lesson is how you deal with your child's disappointment.... I tell my kids that not all families can afford to invite everyone as parties are very expensive..(and they get that as we dont invite everyone to ours...Giving your child a choice e.g. you can invite 6 friends gives them a sense of belonging in the party.....(From about age 5)....I know when we have had a get together you cant possibly get around to everyone..... It gets back to what is the purpose of a party in the 1st place....
LeylaAbdulladeGroot LeylaAbdulladeGroot 6 years
These reasons completely unaffected me, my kids have been having annual Princess Tea Party since age 1, whole class invited, costume party next to a pool, in a park; I"m not rich at all- but party should be fun, not expensive- and fun is created by kids themselves. Provide enough drink( good quality lemonade), and little treats( healthy variety of chips, lota of fruit and veg( less than 1$ for kilo at market)+ 4 cakes; bubbles, helium baloons, and face-paint. Little kids should celebrate day-time anyway, no need for BBQ. For evening stay-overs salad-meals- pasta is cheap, and fills much space! And DIY everything: invitations,keep-sakes: if you plan smart they'll cost you less than 10 cent each. PC and printer, glue and glitter can be your best friends for this. No time- even when buying things I could have made, every party cost me less than 100$( but felt like a milllion). I always despised th eidea of personal invitations, since teen hosted only open- dorr parties, and if you have enough energy( which comes out of love', I'm mad about my kids, and they drive me to heroic acts, such as making 5 varieties of fine snacks for 45 persons)and imagination( a lot doesn't have to be time-consuming or finance depleting)- anything is possible. I always also wondered, if someone works so muh they have no time to make anything, they should have enough money to buy everything? And kids always find a way, whatever hey are faced with- they get used to.
KathrynBobay KathrynBobay 6 years
Many teachers have the policy in place, that no child be excluded to prevent hurt feelings. If a child does not receive an invitation and discovers this fact in school and becomes upset it is now the teachers job to console the child. It becomes disruptive to the class and the teacher is less likely to be able to complete what was planned. It then becomes unfair to those kids who are waiting for the next activity. If you do not want to or unable to include the entire class the most respectful thing to do is take the initiative and get a class list together. Most schools due to privacy laws are unable to hand out personal information so it is up to the parents to organize their own list. Then you are free to invite the children you want by mailing the invites home. Please show a little consideration for the teachers, their job is to teach your child NOT to be a party coordinator. Every child has a birthday and every child is worthy of special attention on their day but the world doesn't revolve around that one child. The sooner parents realize this the better off everyone else will be.
yurena yurena 6 years
I've got a 3 and 2 year olds. First and second birthday at home, just the four of us and my mother and sister in law. My family lives abroad. Third birthday was at the children centre, took a few sandwiches, made a cake adn got some balloons. Not biigie. Never had a party myself and didn't traumatise me. I think the bigger you start the more chances for disappointment and discontent in life. Imagine, 20 kids this year, and next? and presents? etc, etc. I think celebrations of this type (Christmas and weddings too) should be for the family to enjoy instead of parading a wealth we may not even have. Of course, a couple of friends their age is always desirable for birthdays. x
TamaraCrossley TamaraCrossley 6 years
i think you dont have to invite them all but you have to make sure that if you are inviting say girls you dont leave out just one girl from the class other wise you are going to upset the one. noone likes to feel left out at any age. I think it is important to teach our children not to hurt other peolpes feelings.
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