Although your teen is technically almost an adult, you may not want her partying with her friends after prom without any adult supervision. Instead of letting her loose on the town, offer to sponsor an after party that you can chaperone. Head off a boring bash by choosing a fun-filled -- and memorable -- theme that your teen and her friends will enjoy.
After a long night of dancing your teen, and his pals, may need a more relaxed after-prom party. Instead of just letting the kids sit around, getting bored or falling asleep, have a prom-themed film festival at home. Show movies in your family room or set up a screen with a computer projector in the backyard. Serve up popcorn, with different topping flavors such as nacho cheese and kettle corn, and soda or other soft drinks as refreshments. Make sure to tell the guests to bring a change of comfortable clothes, as prom-wear won't work well with your movie madness. Pick a selection of teen- or prom-themed flicks such as "16 Candles," "Carrie" or "Prom."
Game Show Theme
Engage your teen and her friends in an entertaining, and possibly even educational, game show theme prom after party. Create your own in-home trivia party, giving each teen a bell or buzzer to ring when she knows the answer to the questions. Create themed questions that focus on classes from your teen's senior year or make the game show more light-hearted by asking about high school social situations and events such as homecoming or a spring fling dance. Another option is to choose a more physically challenging game show idea, having the teens try wacky tasks such as balancing a stack of cookies on their heads or running through a water-soaked relay race.
Bonfire or Picnic
If you are lucky enough to live near the beach, or have a large campground-type area nearby, throw a bonfire after prom bash for your child and his classmates. Families who can't logistically meet the demands of a bonfire can go with a paired-down picnic version. Ask the guests to bring a change of clothes and get comfy for the bonfire or picnic party. Provide the teens with after-prom snacks such as marshmallows, chocolate and graham crackers to make s'mores, or provide homemade baked goods. Instead of planning an overload of activities, let the kids relax and enjoy one another's company at this end of school event.
After the prom is over, and everyone's dates have gone home, have a slumber party for your teen and her friends. Make this a single-sex party, asking only the girls to stay for your daughter's bash or the boys for your son. Make the party a throwback to your teen's younger days and have the gang choose a few activities that they enjoyed when they were kids. For example, set up your own sundae bar where the girls can add kiddie foods such as gummy worms and sprinkles to their ice cream.