As your baby gets older it is very important for them to socialize with children their age, it will teach them important skills like sharing and taking turns. And it gives you some much needed adult socializing time. This being said, you need to be prepared for their first play date. They may break down and not want to cooperate, to make it the easiest first play date here are some things to keep in mind.
One on One
For their first play date it is best to not overwhelm them with a dozen children. Try just a one on one setting to keep things easy and simple. While the kids are getting to know each other, use this time to get to know the mother. You could make a friend, which is always nice.
Keep it short
When you are just beginning to know each other keep the dates short and simple. So as to not overwhelm the children or yourself. If you really hit it off, it does not hurt to lengthen the play date, just keep an eye of those kids. As they spend more time together they will begin to have small fights that will need to be dealt with.
Stay at home
Because it is your child’s first play date, try to keep it at your home for your child’s comfort. Keeping it somewhere your child is most familiar with will insure they will feel comfortable with at least their settings if something goes wrong.
Make sure when you schedule a play date with another mother, make sure it is after nap time has occurred. We all know that children in an uncomfortable situation and have little to no sleep, it means two very cranky kids, and also two very flustered mothers.
While you have your guests over, you will need to have appropriate snacks and drinks available. This does not need to be anything like a full meal of course, but something like crackers and cheese or a veggie tray. (Since your children will be younger, have snacks like cheerios and bananas) For drinks, things like apple juice and milk will work wonderful.
When you finally have that first play date, keep in mind everyone is going to be nervous, but as you spend more time together I am sure you will become good friends.