Introducing 2 and 3 Year-Olds to Santa for the first time.

    Following are suggestions that may ease nervousness in children (and adults) who may be reluctant about having Saint Nicholas VISIT at home. If after reading this information you have questions or comments please use the contact us link at the bottom of the page.

    A few words about smaller kids (2-3) and Santa. Young children have been taught about the Big Guy from television and storybooks. They have in their minds that he is as big as the picture book or the TV screen. The first time they see him live in their home environment it can be emotionally overwhelming. Often they will run to an adult for safety. If before your celebration you take the time to talk to the smaller children about the "real" Santa, we can avoid upsetting your celebration. Start talking with smaller children about these few things a week or so before your reservation. If possible in a group, so all kids can interact with each other. This conversation could take place more than once. (2 times is sufficient) You will need a pair of men's work boots. These boots need not be new, clean, shiny, or even black, simply a pair of work boots.  Have these boots sitting where other shoes are kept.

    This conversation should be a part of another activity. Perhaps you are discussing with kids about their Holiday wish lists or even during their storybook reading. Never the less you will be bringing up the topic of Santa's physical description. Your conversation could go something like this,

    "Does anybody know how tall Mr. Claus is" In a group setting children may raise their hands or blurt out their guess? You will hold your hand to a height of 6ft. "Well, he is as big as Bobby's dad."  Reminding everyone later (when a tall man arrives) putting your hand above any man's head. "See everybody, this is how tall he is")

The next question will be Does anybody know what size boot he wears.   In a group setting children may raise their hands or blurt out their guesses.  You will walk to the place your shoes are stored and lift one or two of the work boots placed there earlier. Describe Santa's boots that they are As big or bigger, black, shiny, and tall, all the way just below his knees. Showing with your hand just below a man's knee. Sharing this information with children whether they participate or not is important. It opens up a dialog about Saint Nicholas. When he does appear the children will be prepared.

    Additionally, I would like to share some tips for adults.

    Sometimes when a smaller child (2-3 y/o) witnesses his grand entrance they are overwhelmed with emotion and will run to the comfort of ANY adult. Although this is the hardest task to complete it is important that children acting like they want to be picked up to the safety of an adult's arms, NOT BE PICKED UP. It is OK for the adult to kneel to the child and verbally comfort that child, but please never pick up or secure the child in their arms while Mr. Claus is visiting. An exception might be that there is a child that won't stop screaming and should be lifted and removed from the room. Let reluctant children observe others enjoying Santa's company. Eventually, most will warm up in their own time. Please encourage a reluctant child ONCE, please don't repeatedly coach an unwilling child. Kris Kringle has his magical way of tempting the Child's trust to sit on his knee if only for a fleeting second. 

    2-3-year-old children will begin to work out in their minds about the situation when they see that they won't be lifted to the comfort of an adult. They will begin to rationalize with themselves in their minds why other kids are comfortable and why the other kids aren't screaming. Usually, by the time Santa has finished with willing participants, unwilling participants have warmed up to Father Christmas and will have more trust-ability to approach Saint Nick in most cases will have noted their reluctance and take the time needed to gain the child's trust.

If after reading this information you have any comments or questions please feel free to use our  CONTACT US form.

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