When it comes to presents I prefer to leave the present opening for the end of the party but really,
there is no right or wrong time to open the gifts.
Opening Gifts Options:
•At the beginning of the party, after all the guests have arrived. It’s wise to put the gifts away immediately so they won’t get broken or have pieces lost before the party’s over.
•At the end of the party, just before the guests go home. The advantage to this timing is that the gifts will be intact when the guests leave and letdown may be eliminated. It also lends a bit of mystery and suspense to the day’s events.
•After the party, for kids 4 and under. Some feel it’s too hard for young party guests not getting presents to watch the present opening.
Gift Opening as an Activity
•Have the guests sit in a semicircle around the birthday child.
•Furnish a receptacle (wastebasket or container) for gift wrappings and ribbons; see to it yourself that these articles–and only these–are discarded right away.
•Stack the gifts by the birthday child and encourage him or her to open them in order instead of rummaging through them for the largest, the brightest, or the best friend’s gift.
•Let each child hold the present he or she brought and give it to the birthday child in some order.
•Draw names from a hat or spin a bottle to select the order in which presents will be opened.
•Have the birthday child make a wish for the person who gave it and then read outloud the card and who gave the gift.
•Give the giver of the gift a small gift or party favor to open as the birthday child opens their gift.
•Make a note of the gift and the gift-giver on each card to sae for thank-you’s later. Or keep a list (or have a helper keep one) as the presents are opened.
•Open only the gifts from the party guests, not those from the family or others who are not present at the party.
What are some things you have done to make gift giving a smooth and enjoyable process for everyone?