Talking to your child about their day makes for perfect dinnertime chat and early evening catch-ups. Although it can be a challenge to get children to open up about their day, whether it’s because the TV is distracting them or there’s so much to chat about they don’t know where to start!
Encouraging your child to speak about their day, every day, helps nurture your relationship and gives you the opportunity to offer support when they need it.
These conversation starters for children are a great way of encouraging a response that is longer than a word or two.
1. What Was the Best Bit of Today?
This question is asked around dinner tables everywhere on a daily basis. Instead of grilling children about their day, chat about how your day was with your partner when the children can overhear. By listening to their parents talk about the positive parts of their day, children will be encouraged to do the same.
2. Who Did You Sit With at Lunch?
Your child may not always engage in conversations with the same friends everyday. Children often discuss the day’s happenings at lunch. Asking who your child talked with encourages conversation about the day.
3. Are They Still Serving Lumpy Custard for Pudding?
Try asking a funny question about lunch or a game in the playground. Helping your child laugh will encourage them to talk about school and the day’s happenings.
4. Where Did You Play After School?
Whether your child attends an after-school club or comes home to a nanny, the afternoon may have included some added playtime. Asking where your child played opens up the topic of what your child was doing after school, who they played with and what they did.
5. What’s Your Toy of the Day?
Play is a big part of a young child’s day. Having a ‘Toy of the Day’ will help them talk about who they played with and what they did together.
6. How is Daniel?
Speaking about a specific friend helps to narrow down the day to manageable chunks. Your child can focus on a particular time they spent with their friend.
7. Did You Read a Good Book Today?
What was your favourite part of the book? Who was your favourite character in the book? Asking your child about a book they brought home or read during school will encourage them to talk what they liked and disliked about the book.
8. Was it Quiet or Noisy in Your Class Today?
What did the teacher say to get everyone to quiet down and listen? You can get a feel for the atmosphere of the classroom by asking about the noise level.
9. Whose Lunch Looked the Yummiest Today?
Did you want to switch lunches with them? Talking about lunch will encourage your child to offer suggestions for future lunches.
10. What’s Happening in Your Drawing?
Use the drawings and paintings your child brings home from school to start a conversation. If you have a nanny or after-school babysitter, ask them to engage the children in putting together a scrapbook of their artwork. That way, when Mum and Dad come home they can go through the scrapbook together.
11. Could You Show Me How to Add Up These Numbers?
Asking your child to explain something they learnt in school is often better that asking what they learnt. You can also share how the topic was taught when you were in school.
12. Did You Make Any Mistakes Today?
Talking about mistakes allows parents and children to think of different ways to handle specific situations. But don’t focus too long on the mistake. Talk about how your child could have handled it and then move on to praise something they did. Maybe share a mistake that you made today too.
13. What Did You Learn From Your Mistake?
Every mistake you make contains a lesson if you look for it. Teaching your child to learn from mistakes will help them not make the same mistake in the future.
14. What Bit of Your Project are You Most Proud of?
If your child is reluctant to talk about their homework, don’t point out errors. Instead, ask about things they did well.
15. What Was Your Favourite Lesson Today?
This is a good way to get your child to talk about a specific lesson. Ask them why they enjoyed it so much too.
When you’re asking these questions be sure to serve as a role model and talk about your day too. By being specific in your questions and answers you’ll encourage the same from your child.
Got some great tried and tested ideas for conversation starters with kids? Share them with us!