Providing snacks at playdates today has become somewhat trickier than it use to be. Some parents are alright with others providing snacks, others want to bring their own snacks, and then there are parents that have children who seem to be allergic to more than one type of snack. So what is playdate etiquette when it comes to snacks? Well, there is no right answer to the whole snack issue but here are some suggestions and ideas when it comes to playdates and snack time.
The first thing you will want to do if the playdate is being held at another home is ask the parent if they are going to provide the snacks for children. You might think this is rude but it’s better to know if they are or aren’t going to have snacks there for your child. There are a few reasons for doing this:
1.Allergies. If your child is allergic to anything you will want to make sure that the host parent knows which foods they are allergic to or they could have major disaster on their hands. If your child does have allergies to certain foods then you might want to give the host parent some suggestions as to what they can eat or just offer to send some snacks of your own.
2.Meal times. If you have a playdate that is close to dinner or lunch time you may not want your child to be eating snacks because they won’t be hungry for the next meal. Some parents don’t have a problem with meal times and others do so make sure you are clear on whether or not you want your child to have a snack.
3.Fussy children. Some kids will only eat certain snacks so it might be easier to just send something you know they will like. It will be easier on the playdate, the child, and probably the host parent.
If you are hosting the playdate at your house there are probably going to be different rules about snacks. Since it is your home that the children are playing at you will dictate the food rules. You can feel free to provide snacks for the children or not. Let the guest parent know what your rules about food are and that you expect them to be respected. Every parent has snack etiquette rules for their homes; some of those rules may or may not include:
Where snacks can be eaten in the house for some parents can be a big deal. Some parents only want snacks to be eaten in the kitchen because they don’t want the mess all over the house, while others don’t mind children eating snacks anywhere in the house. Always check for house rules on playdates.
Guest parents bring their own snacks has also caused some playdate problems. Some host parents find it rude when others bring snacks for their children and others don’t have a problem with it. Sometimes bringing snacks along can cause problems between children because they want what the other child wants and it can make the playdate go sour because of jealousy. Always make sure it’s ok to share so kids don’t fight.
The types of snacks that parents provide or bring may not be the type of snack you want your child eating. You might be a health nut when it comes to snacks and your friends’ parent might send a bag of chips and a soda. Always check for appropriateness of snacks you provide or bring.
It’s always a good idea for playdate etiquette when it comes to snacks that both parents should consider the feelings of the other. Always ask before assuming that something you think is ok will be alright for another child and that should keep you from offending or irritating another parent.