Friday, December 19, 2008

Playdates to suit different interests

Yesterday, Andre went for his last badminton coaching session with his school. It was a bittersweet session for many of the boys as the school will not be having a badminton school team next year. I still think it sends a wrong message, that only sports able to garner medals are worth cultivating. Here are so many kids keen to take up the sport and the school is not willing to groom them. But anyway, that's the school's decision.

However, during the holidays, I have organised a few badminton playdates for our kids, together with three other parents. We book a court for two hours and the boys meet up to play together. This is the first time I've organised a playdate which involved an outside activity and it has turned out to be very successful. The boys can meet up with their friends, expend their energy in an activity that they all enjoy. Imagine if you have four boys tearing around a house for two hours! Not a good idea.

I feel this sort of playdate works well for boys. During these holidays, Lesley-Anne had her friend Ryan and his brother come over to play and that was pretty fun for them too, although there were slight differences in interests. Here, you see the three kids playing a board game (I think it was Lord of the Rings Trivial Pursuit) while Ryan's brother was more interested to test his skills in the Spiderman video game.

I like playdates - it gives me a chance to know my kids' friends and their parents better. However, as the kids grow older, it gets harder to arrange playdates. Eventually, we'll just let them invite their friends over on their own. Lesley-Anne already knows her friends are welcome at our place. The rule doesn't apply to Andre though - I can just imagine boys turning up at our doorstep without warning! But definitely when he's older.


eunice said...

Totally agree that playdates are good to get to know your children's friends. It was a bit strange for me at first here as we never had playdates when we were kids. But here, playdates, sleepovers are common. Sean hasn't done a sleepover yet as kiasu mum here thinks he's still a bit young but may let him next year.

Have friends who have 8 8yr olds in their homes!! I have my friend's kids for sleepoevers and it's strange to suddenly have 4 kids in the house. Fun too!

monlim said...

I haven't done sleepovers either, but it sounds like fun! Although I shudder to think of 8 8-yr-olds in the home (especially if they're boys!!)

Lilian said...

Done loads of sleepover for Brian. Playdates and sleepovers are big in UK. They spend most of their time playing xbox then chatting in bed till late night. The most number of boys we had over was for his birthday this year, 4 of his buddies came, so in all there were 6 boys in my place. Thankfully, they aren't boisterous kids, so it wasn't stressful.

Sean doesn't have playdates/sleepovers cos he says he doesn't have any friends and it's okay cos "I don't need to have friends." hee...when Brian was very young, he didn't have friends either, so I'm not too worried this time.

So have you decided if you're sending Andre for the Badminton association training? Can't parents chip in to pay for the cost of the coach coming to train the kids in school? Am sure it's not too much.

monlim said...

I think I'd be fine with having Lesley-Anne's friends over for sleepovers but not Andre's (at least not for now!)

Re: badminton, a few of the parents did suggest chipping in for cost of coach but the problem was that not every kid's parent (for p3-6) was keen and the school couldn't have only those pay have a coach. So in the end the principal ruled against it. Anyway, we've signed Andre up for the academy - looking on the bright side, he'll probably get more serious training there, the only down side is he won't get to represent the school.

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