It’s that season again, that time when your kids have put together a holiday performance at school, and you must go and watch it. What a wonderful time, too. You’ll be able to soak up the Christmas spirit as only children can share it, and enjoy the company of other parents as you share the experience.
It is important to express your support of your child at every turn. It’s very frightening for many children to be in front of so many people and perform, and many children find that the stress can make them forget everything they once knew – including their lines in the Nativity! Be sure to sit down with them for ten or twenty minutes in the evenings leading up to the play, and rehearse their lines with them. The key really is repetition, so help them get the lines cemented in their mind. If they do forget, remember to make sure they know you’re proud of them regardless; focus on something that went very well, like, “The way you walked up to the manger was really regal, just like a real king would do it!”
Costumes can be an issue for the school. Consider buying your child’s costume and then donating it to the school for future years, or making it if you’re so inclined. If you’re quite an accomplished wielder of the sewing machine, you can volunteer to make more than one costume; the school will be glad to have your assistance! Masks for cows, sheep, donkeys or little stars can be made rather cheaply and easily, but check the internet. You may find they are quite affordable when bought pre-made, too, and if no one is particularly good at sewing they may look better that way, as well. Donating time and/or money is a great plan!
Helping with rehearsals can be helpful too; if you have a flexible schedule, stay at home or work from home, you may be able to volunteer your services in trying to help the teachers rehearse or even compose the programme. Help setting things up and liaising with the church if required can also be helpful; be flexible and tell them you’re there to help, but be clear on what you’re good at, too, so your skills can be put to the best use possible.
Your child will need some serious encouragement. Make sure he or she is aware of your support, and be prepared to put to rest any concerns. Generally speaking, when a child in such a production forgets his or her line, a warm bout of applause can be expected in recognition of a valiant effort put forth, but children can easily become confused and concerned.
With your support and care, your child can truly enjoy being part of the school Christmas performance. You’re sure to find it becomes a wonderful experience for everyone involved. Don’t forget to celebrate a great performance with a special meal, a big hug, or a small present. They’re sure to help cement your encouragement and turn the annual Christmas performance into a wonderful event!