• Kids Need Active Play Time – [INFOGRAPHIC]

    The Importance of Active Play for Children

  • Tips for Chaperoning a School Field Trip

    If your child’s teacher asked for volunteers to chaperone an upcoming field trip, you might have signed up hesitantly, wanting to be more involved in your child’s education but not knowing quite what to expect. This can be a wonderful experience for you, your child and the whole class if you know how to do your part. Follow these tips to help keep the kids safe, engaged and under control during a school field trip.

    Know the Itinerary

    Your child’s teacher should hold an informational meeting with all chaperones before the outing takes place. This is the time to learn the schedule, logistics and chaperone guidelines. Find out how many kids you’ll be overseeing along with their names and any medical or behavioral problems you should know about.

    Plan Ahead

    While the school should take care of admission costs, and each child should bring everything they need, you never know if someone in your group might forget their lunch or need a Band-Aid. Stock a bag with snacks, water and basic first aid supplies. Dress comfortably for the destination and wear sensible shoes. Keep your cell phone on you in case you need to use it, but put it on silent.

    Act Appropriately

    Refrain from discussing your child’s grades with the teacher during the trip, and if you have other children, leave them at home. This you don’t get distracted from what’s most important – keeping your group safe and engaged on the field trip.

    Maintain Order, But Don’t be Too Strict

    It’s your job to keep your group under control, but the field trip isn’t a military exercise. Firmly enforce rules related to safety and courtesy, but allow minor infractions to slide. If a child breaks a rule, pull him or her aside and offer a quiet reprimand rather than a public scolding. Ask the teacher for advice if a child repeatedly acts out.

    Keep Your Group Safe

    Learn the names and faces of everyone in your group, and be sure they know yours as well. Be aware of any hazards around you so your group can avoid them. Take frequent head counts as the students move along, and alert the teacher immediately if someone is missing.

    Remain Positive and Engaged

    You’re acting as an ambassador for your child’s school during this outing, so model professional behavior and lead by example. Follow the directions you’re given, don’t interrupt the teacher and keep your voice at a moderate level for the setting you’re in. Remain attentive to what the teaching is saying, participate in the activities, and avoid taking calls or answering texts while chaperoning.

    If your child’s school is looking for a fun place to hold a class outing or field trip, feel free to suggest BounceU in Farmingdale. We encourage school groups to visit us for a private, supervised day of fun running around bounce houses! To learn more, or to reserve your field trip, please contact BounceU today.

  • Planning a Birthday Party for Kids with Food Allergies

    With dietary restrictions seemingly on the rise, it’s likely that your child or one of their friends has food allergies. Differences in diet can be a segregating factor for children, especially when all the other kids are enjoying their food.

    As the host of your child’s upcoming birthday party, it’s important to make adjustments to the menu so everyone can feel involved. Here are some examples of common dietary restrictions and solutions for you and your party guests.

    Learn What Food Allergies Apply

    The first step is to determine what restrictions you need to work around. If your child is the one with allergies, this is easy. However, if any friends have special diets, you need to know about them.

    The best way to find out is to ask parents to inform you when they RSVP to the invitations you send out. Kids aren’t always sure of what they’re allergic to, or they’re too shy to speak up, so being aware of allergies beforehand helps ensure you have something safe for sensitive children to eat.

    Celiac Disease/Gluten Sensitivity

    According to the Celiac Disease Foundation, about one in 100 people worldwide have this condition, which causes the body to attack the small intestine as an immune response to eating wheat, rye and barley. Many others have gluten sensitivity, which makes their stomach ache after eating wheat products. Fortunately, gluten-free bread, cookies and cake are easy to come by.

    Lactose Intolerance/Dairy Sensitivity

    People with lactose intolerance – which surprisingly affects over 65 percent of the worldwide population – can’t eat dairy without experiencing bloating, abdominal pain, nausea and diarrhea. Milk and cheese are obvious sources of dairy, but many types of candy, cake and frosting also contain milk-based products. If you serve ice cream and birthday cake with buttercream frosting, be sure to have a dairy-free alternative for those with lactose sensitivity.

    Egg Allergies

    Intolerance to eggs is a common childhood allergy. Since this is a typical ingredient in party foods ranging from cake to doughnuts to pastries, it’s important to know if any of your guests are allergic to eggs. Work around this by making a small serving of egg-free cake for any sensitive children.

    Peanut Allergies

    Maybe you don’t plan on serving bags of peanuts, but this snack item is often processed in the same factory as cookies and candy. When shopping for goodies to hand out at a party with someone who has severe peanut allergies, make sure to read labels carefully. They should specify if the snack could have traces of peanut in it.

    Our goal here at BounceU is to make sure everyone has a safe, fun time at your child’s birthday party. You’re welcome to bring your own food, but if you prefer us to handle the menu, we can make adjustments to accommodate you and your guests. With our help, your event is sure to be unique and stress-free! To learn more about our party packages, or to book your event, please contact BounceU today.

  • Parents: Reassess Your Behavior Expectations

    When your children play in the dog’s water dish or refuse to put their toys away, it’s easy to think they’re being obstinate when in reality they’re simply acting their age. You may develop unrealistic expectations because your children’s behavior is inconsistent from day to day, or even minute to minute. Sleep deprivation, hunger and a host of other factors affect a child’s mood and behavior.

    Consider some common behavior expectations, the realities many parents face and tips to help your children behave.

     

    Resisting Temptation

    The expectation: Your two-year-old should stay out of the dog’s water dish.

    The reality: Every time you turn your back, water splashes everywhere.

    What to do: Your child sees a water dish as an invitation to play, so find a substitute for it. Consistently steer the child away from the dog’s bowl and toward a bin filled with an inch or two of water and plastic cups to play with. Set a towel under this play area to minimize the mess.

     

    Putting Toys Away

    The expectation: Your three-year-old should put toys away the first time you ask.

    The reality: After asking 100 times, your child finally puts two blocks away and then starts playing again.

    What to do: To help your child resist the urge to play, assist with cleaning up and praise your child with each successful contribution to the process. This develops good habits, even if they take time to appear.

     

    Granting Privacy

    The expectation: Your two-year-old should play for two minutes while you use the restroom.

    The reality: No sooner do you sit down than your upset toddler starts crying and pounding on the door.

    What to do: You can always let your child come with you, but if you’re adamant about privacy, try playing cars or doing a puzzle with your toddler for a few minutes. Then, say you need to use the restroom and will be back in two minutes. Hopefully, the activity you started together will occupy your child’s attention until you return.

     

    Behaving in Public

    The expectation: Your three-year-old should sit quietly at the restaurant and color the kids’ menu until the food arrives.

    The reality: Your child throws sugar packets, crawls around under the table, and screams when you attempt to make him or her hold still.

    What to do: Choose kid-friendly restaurants until your child is at least four years old. In the meantime, make eating out feel like home. Dine at your usual time, skip the dress clothes, and consider bringing your child’s familiar cutlery from home. Provide snacks, toys and a walk around the restaurant until the food arrives.

     

    At BounceU, we love entertaining children and their quirky behaviors! From toddlers to elementary school kids to pre-teens, BounceU is a great place to bring your children for a fun day of running around bounce houses. We specialize in making birthday parties, field trips and other events unique and stress-free for the whole family. To learn more, or to book an event, please contact us today.

  • Birthday Cake Trends

    Are you hoping to make your child’s birthday stand out this year with a one-of-a-kind cake? Don’t opt for a simple sheet cake when there are so many unique, trendy options out there. Whether you decide to order a cake from a local bakery or try your hand at making your own culinary masterpiece, get inspiration from these birthday cake trends.

    Tiered Cakes

    Once reserved for weddings and other formal occasions, tiered cakes are now taking center stage at kids’ birthday parties. These beautiful desserts are sure to impress. Plus, they’re ideal for large gatherings because everyone can help themselves to a sizeable piece.

    Unicorn Cakes

    Little girls, in particular, have a hard time resisting this triple-decker cake designed to resemble a unicorn’s head. Characterized by smooth white frosting, a colorful buttercream mane and gold fondant horn, these cakes are so darn cute – you may have a hard time cutting into them!

    Character Cakes

    Whether your child adores Star Wars, Mickey Mouse or Minions, you can design a birthday cake to reflect that. Even if you can’t afford or don’t have the skills to make your own custom cake, you can use a cheap hack to create the appearance of one. Simply bake or order a basic round cake and top it with a character topper that will make your child smile. This also gives you the opportunity to use the same topper again in the future.

    Cupcakes

    Simple, adorable, fun cupcakes are perfect for indecisive children or those who hate to share. Order or bake a range of flavors with different colored frosting to suit everyone’s tastes. Just make sure you have plenty in each variety to satisfy all the chocolate and vanilla lovers at the party.

    Cake Pops

    This birthday cake trend is made by mixing cake and frosting together to form gooey balls, putting them on lollipop sticks, and dipping them in chocolate or candy melts. They come in a wide variety of colors and flavors, and you can even design them to match the theme of your child’s birthday party. These bite-sized snacks are sure to please adults and kids alike.

    Cookie Cake

    Not everyone enjoys traditional birthday cake. If this describes your child, or you’re simply looking for something a little different, try a cookie cake featuring personalized frosting and sprinkles. Serve triangle-shaped slices just as you would with a regular birthday cake. To create more servings, stack multiple giant cookies on top of one another with frosting in between.

    Now that you have ideas for a fun cake, you need to pick a place to hold your child’s birthday party. BounceU in Farmingdale is a great place for children of all ages, from toddlers to elementary school kids to pre-teens. We specialize in making birthday parties unique and stress-free with party packages designed to meet your needs. To learn more about your options, or to book your party, please contact BounceU today.

  • Throwing a Kid-Friendly Halloween Party

    The spookiest holiday of the year is coming up! Why not throw a Halloween party your kids and their friends are sure to love? Invite guests to dress in costumes and enjoy the themed activities you come up with. BounceU can accommodate your Halloween party, and you can even use our fun-filled venue and party packages to enhance the theme you choose! Here are some ideas to spark your creativity.

    Monster Mash Halloween Party

    Serve cute monster cupcakes, finger sandwiches with olives for eyes and jagged cheese for teeth, and other party food labeled to be extra creepy. For instance, grapes become “monster eyeballs,” licorice becomes “monster hair” and pigs in a blanket become “monster toes.” Add face painting to your party package at BounceU so your party guests can pretend to be monsters as they play around the bounce houses.

    Halloween Carnival

    Host a party with traditional carnival games tweaked a bit to fit the Halloween theme. For example:

    • Bring a jar of Halloween candy and have each child write down how many they think are inside on a slip of paper. Whoever gets the closest wins a prize!
    • Spray paint plastic bowling pins white, orange and yellow and play candy corn bowling.
    • Modify “pin the tail on the donkey” to become “pin the bow tie on the skeleton” or “pin the nose on the witch.”
    • Make cone-shaped “witch’s hats” out of black poster board and play “Halloween ring toss.”

    Harry Potter Party

    Witches, wizards and Muggles alike will enjoy an afternoon complete with butterbeer, pumpkin juice and golden snitches. Set the mood with candles made out of spray painted paper towel and toilet paper rolls with tea lights on top. Then, serve treats like Bertie Bot’s Every Flavor Beans, Drooble’s Best Blowing Gum and color-changing “potions” made with food coloring. Hand out plastic Harry Potter glasses, magic wands and broomsticks to each guest. The kids will love running around BounceU, casting spells and pretending to play Quidditch.

    Haunted House Halloween Party

    This classic party theme can be as lighthearted or spooky as you want. BounceU can help create the perfect atmosphere with our Cosmic Bounce package. Ultraviolet lighting and glow-in-the-dark props turn the spooky fun up a notch for your Halloween party. White and neon colors glow under black light, so your guests’ costumes look extra fun!

    Murder Mystery Party

    For older kids, consider throwing a detective-themed party where guests have to unravel a murder mystery. You can find scripts and stories online that tweens and young teens will love! Leave clues around the BounceU venue for the young sleuths to discover and work out the puzzles together.

    BounceU has private party rooms and bounce house arenas to make your upcoming Halloween party the spooky success you’re hoping for. Ask about our numerous add-ons, such as Cosmic Bounce, face painting, food and drinks, party favors, and more. If you’re ready to book your party, please contact BounceU in Farmingdale today!

  • Party Favor Ideas for a Halloween Birthday Party

    Was your child born on or around Halloween? Perhaps it has become a tradition to throw a Halloween-themed birthday party each year for your child. There are so many spooky, fun themes to choose from!

    Just remember that birthday party etiquette says you should provide party favors to thank each guest for coming. Not sure what to offer? Use these ideas to help you come up with something cute and memorable.

    Halloween Candy and Treats

    Nothing goes with Halloween better than candy. Consider handing out some of these Halloween goodies as part of your party favor bag:

    • Fall-colored M&Ms in a mini mason jar
    • Halloween lollipops or candy bars with personalized labels
    • Chocolate-covered Oreos with Halloween designs
    • Mini pumpkin cake pops
    • Chocolate kisses wrapped in orange and black foil
    • Popcorn in trick-or-treating bags
    • Candy-filled pumpkin balloons
    • S’mores kits with graham crackers, mini chocolate bars and Peeps marshmallow ghosts
    • Tic Tacs with customized labels (white Tic Tacs are “ghost poop,” green are “witch warts, orange are “pumpkin seeds” and red are “vampire vitamins”)
    • Bottles of orange soda with the label removed and a Jack-o-lantern face drawn on

    Halloween Toys and Games

    Your party favors certainly aren’t limited to candy and treats. If you want to keep the sugar content down, get creative with your party favors by including some of these fun suggestions:

    • Customized packs of playing cards
    • Halloween crowns or masks made at the party
    • Plastic spider rings
    • Halloween-themed spin tops
    • Vampire teeth
    • Glow-in-the-dark bouncy “eye” balls
    • Bottles of bubbles in Halloween-themed packaging
    • Monster stickers
    • Gel cling window decals
    • Halloween Rubik’s cube
    • Play-Doh with customized Halloween labels

    Other Halloween-Themed Party Favors

    To remind guests of the fun they had at your child’s party, include some of these unique Halloween-themed items in each party favor bag:

    • Lip balm with personalized labels
    • Orange and white candles
    • Halloween-themed notebooks
    • Small picture frames with a Polaroid snapshot taken at the party
    • Miniature pumpkins (real or plastic)

    BounceU is the perfect place to hold your child’s Halloween birthday party. We offer private rooms and bounce house arenas for you and your guests to enjoy. As an optional add-on, you can request to have party favors included in the cost of your event, as well as face painting, kid-friendly food and drinks, and much more! Please contact BounceU in Farmingdale to book your party today.

  • How to Throw a Birthday Party for a Special Needs Child

     

    Kids usually anticipate each upcoming birthday with excitement. They look forward to eating cake, hanging out with friends and doing activities they love. This is true of most children, including those with special needs.

    If you have a child who is wheelchair-bound, autistic, non-verbal, or diagnosed with another mental or physical limitation, you may feel overwhelmed at the idea of throwing a birthday party. However, if you, your child and party guests work together, you can host an event that’s fun for everyone. Here are some tips to keep in mind.

    Rethink Your Preconceived Notions

    If your child hates lit candles and doesn’t care for the Happy Birthday song, throw out these aspects of a traditional birthday party. Cater the event to the needs and wants of your child, even if it looks less like a birthday party once you make the necessary changes.

    Pick a Suitable Location

    Your home may be the best place to ensure your child is comfortable and doesn’t become overwhelmed during the birthday party. Your church, library or another venue with a private party room ensures your child is only around family and friends. Consider accessibility if you have a wheelchair to account for.

    Decide Who to Invite

    Keep the number of guests to a manageable level (10 kids or fewer is best), and ask some parents to stay and lend a hand if needed. You might also invite your child’s school teacher to serve as another friendly face and helping hand. If your child is nonverbal, the teacher may be a useful resource for deciding who to invite from school.

    Plan a Few Simple Activities

    Whatever you choose to do during the party, make sure everyone you invite can participate. However, don’t force an activity on anyone. Popular options include:

    • Coloring or other arts and crafts
    • Dancing
    • Red Light, Green Light
    • Pin the tail on the donkey (without blindfolds, if necessary)
    • Cornhole and ring toss

    Decide How to Handle Gifts

    As the parent of a special needs child, you probably know better than anyone how your child will handle the concept of opening gifts in front of a crowd. If you anticipate it being a negative experience, wait until later to unwrap presents. Just remember to send thank you cards.

    Think About Party Favors

    Birthday party etiquette states that you should hand out goody bags to guests before they leave. Make sure every child you invite can enjoy the favors you provide. Some ideas include candy, popcorn, soda, paper crowns, plastic jewelry, stickers, Play-Doh and knick-knacks that correspond with the party’s theme.

    If you’re looking for a spacious venue to host a birthday party for your special needs child, BounceU can help. We make hosting events easy with packages and add-ons to suit your needs. If you’re interested, we can include invitations, food and drinks, activities, party favors, and more. To book your party, please contact BounceU in Farmingdale today!

  • Etiquette for Birthday Party Hosts

     

    Are you planning to throw a party for your child’s upcoming birthday? If it’s been a while since you hosted an event, brush up on the age-old etiquette that applies to you as the parent, as well as the birthday child.

    Inviting Guests

    Sit down with your child and decide who to invite to the party. These might include family members, classmates, and friends from church or social groups. Once you know who you’re asking, heed these invitation rules:

    • If your child wants to invite more than half the class, propose inviting everyone to prevent hard feelings.
    • If your child chooses to invite less than half the class, mail the invitations. Otherwise, you can hand them out at school.
    • Strive to get invites out about two weeks before the party, and include instructions for RSVPing.
    • If you don’t hear back from someone two or three days before the party, it’s acceptable to call, text or email them for confirmation.

    Opening Gifts

    This can be a tricky part of birthday parties for young gift givers. To help it go smoothly, follow these tips:

    • Before the party, discuss with your child the importance of saying “thank you” for every gift, even if they don’t like it or already have it. Emphasize that the giver’s good intentions are what matter the most.
    • Don’t drag out the gift-opening process. Help your child remove the wrapping paper if necessary. Once opened, remove the gifts and wrapping from the room and resume other activities.
    • Jot down each gift and the corresponding giver’s name. Then, right after the last guest leaves the party, sit down with your child and write out thank you cards. Mail them within a day or two.
    • Consider not opening gifts during the party, especially if your child and many of the guests are under 5 years old.

    Hosting Graciously

    While the ultimate goal is to host a memorable party for the birthday boy or girl, it’s also important to make every guest happy. Here’s how:

    • Greet guests warmly and involve them in the group right away.
    • Plan age-appropriate activities and have a contingency plan in case a child or two doesn’t want to participate.
    • Ask a few adults to help you monitor the children if you’re inviting more than four or five guests.

    Party Favors

    If your budget allows it, make goody bags for each guest to take home. You might include a craft from the party, candy, small toys and games, or small items that correspond with the party theme.

    Consider hosting your child’s next birthday party at BounceU. We offer private rooms and bounce house arenas for you and your guests to enjoy. We take the guesswork out of hosting birthday parties by offering packages and add-ons to suit your needs. Request to have invitations, food and drinks, activities, party favors, and more included in the price. To book your party, please contact BounceU in Farmingdale today!

  • Best Birthday Bashes: Top Trending Themes for 2018

    When you’re planning your kids’ birthday parties, you want to pick a theme that’ll have the kids excited to invite all their friends. Need some inspiration? We can hook you up with all the hottest themes.

    • Lego: Lego is, of course, classic but the Lego movies have kicked it into high gear. It’s really easy to find Lego, Ninjago, and Lego Batman themed decorations, and a Lego cake is a thing of beauty.
    • Cupcake Challenge: Inspire a little friendly competition by providing kids with cupcakes and everything they need to decorate them. Give prizes for the most creative, most decorated, most delicious, and any other superlative you can imagine.
    • Seuss: It’s impossible not to have fun when you dress the party in a Dr. Seuss theme. Incorporate Seussical foods like Moose Juice and Goose Juice, set up some party games like Pin the Star on the Sneech, create a photo booth incorporating Lorax mustaches and Cat in the Hat Hats, and you’ll have a hit on your hands.
    • Doge: Ask any tween, and you’ll find out that this Shiba Inu meme is hot this year. A quick Etsy search is all you need to find the signs, cards, cookie cutters, stickers and more to make this “so birthday” “much celebrate.”
    • Movie Magic: Harry Potter, Star Wars, Moana, Trolls, Frozen, and just about any superhero movie you can name- these have all been hot and they’re going to stay hot! What’s your kid’s favorite? They’re so popular that it’s easy to find everything you need at the local party supply store to make your party a blockbuster.
    • Mad Scientist: What’s more fun than bubbling test tubes and experimental concoctions? Mad scientist punch, complete with dry ice.
    • Mickey and Minnie Mouse: Mickey and Minnie are classics that never get old. The red, white and black color scheme makes it easy to style your party, and you can incorporate the iconic ear shape into all kinds of tasty treats.
    • Pizza Party: What’s better than an old-fashioned pizza party? A DIY pizza party! Provide kids with dough and toppings, and making their own pizzas will entertain them for quite a while.
    • Instagram Party: For the ultra-hip kiddo, an Instagram party may be just the thing. The logo is easy enough to duplicate for signage and even treats, and when you set out some fun photo booth props, you’ll soon have the kids snapping away
    • Unicorn: Unicorns have never been hotter. It’s hard to step foot into a party or craft store without tripping over all things unicorn, which makes it super easy to create an amazing unicorn party.
    • Emojis: Smilies, LOL, and who would have thought the poop emoji would be so popular. Emojis are everywhere, and how hard would it be to make a cake that’s circular, yellow, and features your favorite emoji expression?
    • Trolls: Trolls are back, and we can’t stop the feeling! In addition to being fun, and delightful for decorating because of all the colors, Trolls are perfect for a party, because the movie soundtrack makes for a ready-made party mix, and the dolls are perfect favors.
    • Fairies and Mermaids: Like Cowboys and Pirates, these have never really gone out of style, but they’re huge right now. Use your imagination, get inspiration from just about any store, and make your child’s party magical.

    The ultimate kids’ party? A BounceU party! At BounceU, we love kids! That’s why we’ve created the best private party place in the universe, where families and friends can get together and go a little wild. We specialize in creating stress-free, unique, and exhilarating parties that make your child feel like a VIP. Whether you’ve got a special event on the horizon or just want to come in for an Open Bounce, call us at (631) 777-5867 or visit our website to see what makes BounceU so special.