How to Host a Successful Take Your Kids to Work Day

Take Your Kids to Work Day is a fun event that can boost engagement and increase young children’s interest in the business world – and their parents’ work. Parents can enjoy a day of fun activities and connecting with their child while children get to learn more about what their parents do all day. This is a great event to plan just after major deadlines are completed or the rush-season of your industry is complete.

Of course, good planning is the key to a successful Take Your Kids to Work Day compared to the chaos that can ensue without a few activities prepared ahead of time. Let’s dive into the secrets of a fun and organized Take Your Kids to Work Day that you can plan for your team.

Choose a Day When School is Out

Pick a day on the local school district calendar when school is out. National holidays (usually Mondays) are a safe bet, but you can also choose from administrative days and alternative/snow days. These are days parents would need to find childcare, so children won’t be absent from school and parents can save on a day of babysitting.

RSVP The Number of Children Attending

Make sure you know how many children are coming, and the approximate numbers for each age group. There is a big difference between a curious toddler and a self-sufficient 10-year-old when planning a kid’s day. From activities to food selection, having an RSVP is incredibly helpful. Of course, there will probably be a few last-minute changes, but approximate numbers will help you to be better prepared.

Establish Guidelines with Employee Parents

Set a few guidelines and share them with parents ahead of time.

  • Will parents be expected to get real work done, or is it a day entirely dedicated to family time and company tours?
  • Will there be childcare while parents work, or are parents fully responsible for oversight?
  • How well-behaved will the children need to be? Is this playtime or quiet hours?

Address essential expectations and protocols for the day so parents can prepare themselves and their children to have a good time.

Create a Play Area and Book a Childcare Professional

Set aside a large meeting room or open collaboration area as the play area. Create barriers to keep toddlers in and let older kids know where to stay if children need to remain in the play area during certain times of the day.

It can be helpful to hire a childcare professional for the day, especially if parents are expected to get some work done. This will help with liability, oversight, and general child corralling.

Create a Movie Room

Use one of the meeting rooms as a movie room where kids can watch children’s movies or interesting documentaries throughout the day. This can provide a space to unwind and fill a few hours between planned activities.

Plan a “Day Camp” of Activities

Consider Take Your Kids to Work Day to be like a day-camp experience for the children. Plan activities that will last throughout the day, with consideration for the different age groups.

  • Shadow Parents’ Routines
    • Plan times when children will watch and learn about what their parents do during the work day.
  • Hold a Kid’s Meeting and Brainstorming Session
    • Invite the children to sit at a conference table, hold a pretend meeting, and offer interesting brainstorming ideas. You might even get a few ideas you can use.
  • Draw the Company Mascot
    • Hold a drawing activity where the children can draw and elaborate on the company mascot design, or draw original new logos for the company.
  • Play Outside on the Grounds
    • Plan some outside time where children can play outside on the landscaped grass. Bring a basket of balls, jump ropes, and outdoor toys.
  • Present the Company History
    • Show the children a presentation on the company’s founding story and history.
  • Take a Company Tour
    • Take a tour of the facilities, exploring the different departments and areas where people work.
  • Have a Nap Area for Little Children
    • Set aside a dark, comfortable space for younger children to take their afternoon nap.

Serve Lunch and Snacks

Don’t forget snacks! Children are usually served lunch at school and they appreciate a morning and afternoon snack. Plan a catered lunch for the whole office, including children. A sandwich platter with fruit, cookies, and chips for sides is sufficient, or you can go all-out with preordered box lunches (plus a few extras, just in case).

Offer juice instead of soda to promote good health and provide a basket of healthy snacks to enjoy throughout the day. You should also let parents know that it’s OK if their child needs a special lunch or snack pack from home, as some children have unusual dietary requirements or are going through a picky phase.

Celebrate Families in the Workplace

Bring Your Kids to Work Day is a great way to celebrate families, weave work-life balance together, and spark an interest in the business world among little future professionals. You can help parents strengthen the bond with their children through mutual understanding and save everyone a day of childcare expenses all at once. Not to mention the new friends that will be made and the joy children bring to the workplace.