The toddlers will be excited to see each other when they first log in, so they’ll need about 5 minutes to say hello and then focus.
Parents should sit next to the children, but should not show their faces onscreen. We find that the kids tend to be more focused when they only each other.
We start by playing a sing-along-song that fits the theme. The song can also have movement if you have enough space. YouTube is one source you can go to for songs.
Everyone except for the story teller should put their microphone on mute.
The moderator announces story time. In our case, the moderator is also the story teller.
The story should be short in length and easy to follow. The book should also be a fairly large size with bold, colorful illustrations that can be easily seen onscreen.
Show & Tell
Each child shows a toy, book, or something they made that’s related to the theme
Each child’s microphone should stay on mute until it is their turn to speak.
The moderator will announce Show & Tell and call on each child one by one.
Each child should be limited to one-two minutes only.
Goodbye and Log Off
These are all the steps you’ll need for your virtual play date toddler group. My strongest word of advice is to be patient, and allow the children to become more engaged and focused with each meeting. Toddlers are much more accustomed to in-person group activities like pre-school or story time at the library. By the second or third play date, you’ll be able to discover your child’s specific needs.