End of Summer Party

A few weeks ago TJ came to me and said he wanted to have a party with his friends.  I've posted before about how he throws parties in the forest for his stuffies.  These little shindigs are complete with snacks, loot bags, games and decorations.  The guests are usually other stuffed toys, his brother and who ever happens to be visiting us that day. This time there were no friends over so we'd have to make some plans....

TJ was very clear that he was going to buy the items for the loot bags.  When I suggested that we could plan an actual party (bigger than his usual forest ones), he was thrilled!  We talked about themes, who to invite, activities, decorations, loot bags, and of course the cost.

Side note:
Now I have been reading a lot about project based homeschooling.  I tried to let TJ have complete control over this party project.  I did make some suggestions and encouraged him to keep working on it (once you actually invite people it's nice to follow through).  I am learning right along with my children here, so I won't say I wish I'd done things differently.  I know now for next time to ask more prompting questions such as "what else do we need for the party?, what is the next step?" rather than telling him what needs to be done.

Real math is counting your own money
I am so very proud of my son!  He decided to pay for the entire get-together.  He did some chores around the house and for others. Knowing that it could take a while to earn what he needed, TJ asked if there was a faster way.  We did some brain storming about how people earn money and he decided to sell some toys.  It would help us purge and be much faster than making items to sell.  So off he went to pick some toys to sell and take photos.  I posted the adds on Facebook for him.

Purchasing his own groceries
The week before the party we went shopping for food, decorations and loot bag items.  We had many days of counting money (each time something sold).  With his list in hand, TJ loaded up his cart and paid the cashier for his purchases.

TJ decided to individually decorate and personalize each loot bag.  With around 15 children coming to the house, TJ had a lot of work ahead of him.  He spread out the bag decorating over a few days, taking time to choose each item for the loot bag based on the kids favourite colours.  He also bought some streamers to hang up all over the house!!

Baking cupcakes by himself
Another awesome opportunity came with TJ reading the directions and baking the cupcakes all on his own.  I was simply his assistant and to monitor him using the oven.  I was asked to colour the icing and decorate the cupcakes because TJ was still working on the loot bags the morning of the party.  Poor TJ's interest was waning so we came up with a plan.  He'd decorate one bag, then help add sprinkles to a few cupcakes.  Going back and forth we finished up everything in no time.

Personalized party bags
The party was a huge success.  All the children played wonderfully.  They all brought snacks to share, and enjoyed the treats.  The sprinklers, water guns, and hose we welcomed on the hot day after jumping on the trampoline for a while.  TJ was a wonderful host.  He welcomed each guest and made sure everyone had something/someone to play with.  Some friends left after two hours while others stayed almost four hours and were very sad to have to leave.

Delicious cupcakes
Real learning takes places with the topics are relevant, meaningful and interesting to the learner.   I know TJ truly learned a great deal from  this whole experience. Besides the abundance of learning, and responsibility that took place, this was a whole lot of fun!!  I love the ideas my boys have and I love to be able to say YES to them!!

Have you said YES to your kids recently?  Share in the comments how that went...

This post is linked to:

Mom2Mom Monday linkup

Twinkly Tuesday