Here's this weeks tip: Look at lighting! You see a nice bench that would make a perfect place to take a picture of the kiddos. You plop them down and take it, but later see something like this:
Looks bad! One little guy is in the sun while everyone else is in the shade. A reflector, fill flash, and some post-processing could all soften the effect but there really isn't a full recovery.
You can save yourself a lot of time and get much better pictures if you take the time to look around and find a good spot, taking lighting into consideration. Shade can provide nice soft lighting where you don't have to worry about shadows, harsh sunglight, squinting eyes, or overexposed spots.
However, if it's too dark you may have to break out the flash and flash doesn't provide as natural a look as non-flash photos do. Keep it in mind next time you break out the camera.
And now for the party! In the future I may have a theme, but for today I just want to see your favorite picture, the one you are most proud of taking.