Tuesday was Lauren's school Christmas party and as the Room Mom I was in charge of putting it together. Her teacher told me she wanted it done in 4 stations and the children would rotate stations every 15 minutes. She gave me a $50 budget for supplies (money our class earned earlier in a fundraiser) and let me have at it. I'm seriously not a party planner but I think I pulled it off. (I don't want that to get out so don't tell anyone.) I'm also very lucky to have a great group of parents who were beyond generous and helpful.
The four stations:
1. Christmas Brunch
2. Decorate Ginger Bread Houses
4. Another Craft
Lauren decorates her "gingerbread house"
The details: (since I'm sure you're dying to know)
1. Christmas Brunch
I sent an e-mail out to parents with a list of Brunch items and asked them to contribute. And ho boy did they contribute. We had 2 quiches, sausage balls, Chik-Fil-A nuggets, bacon, pigs in a blanket, muffins, biscuits, jams, juice etc. etc. One of the classmate's older sister works for Chik-Fil-A and actually served the brunch.
Station #1 = HUGE SUCCESS
2. Decorate Ginger Bread Houses (milk cartons)
I didn't ask for any donations for this, or the other crafts, but I used part of the $50 to buy all the supplies. Icing, Graham crackers, peppermints, marshmallows, M&Ms, sprinkles, gummy bears etc. etc. This was a fun station and the children really enjoyed decorating their houses. There was a sprinkle mishap but a parent cleaned that up quickly with a broom.
Station #2 = HUGE SUCCESS
3. Craft #1
A Google search for "easy ornament crafts" turned up these Layered Christmas Tree Ornaments. I cut all the felt pieces out ahead of time and also prepared the popsicle sticks. Lauren painted them brown and I hot glued a string bow to hang them. All the kids had to do was glue on their felt cut-outs. This was a cute and easy craft but they finished it in 5 minutes or less and then
Station #3 = SUCCESSFUL BUT TOO EASY FOR 7-8 YEAR OLDS
4. Craft #2
Stamped Gift Bags based on (this craft)
With the left-over party money I bought a piece of Styrofoam and made my own stamps (like this.) I also bought paint and let the kiddos decorate and stamp paper bags so they could put their tree ornaments in them. This was by far the messiest station. Paint was all over and the stamp shapes turned out to be a little abstract on the gift bags. 2nd graders aren't huge fans of abstract art yet.
Station #4 = MESSY, a bit SLOPPY but FUN = SUCCESS (next time I'll skip the homemade stamps and let them use markers.)
A parent volunteered to work every station so I got to bounce around them all. Almost every child had either their Mom, Dad, or Grandparent there. Everyone was a great help. If someone could guarantee the same group of parents every year than I'll gladly be ROOM MOM every single year.
My next "official" Adventure as Room Mom will be the Valentine's Day Party. If you have any suggestions please send them my way. I'm already stressing about it.