Trying to find out some details about your child’s day at school or a friend’s place is often like trying to get blood out of a stone; impossible.
Sure, some children are talkers but young ones usually can’t remember and older kids can’t be bothered grunting more than a few words.
Instead of getting your knickers in a knot and getting frustrated at your lack of knowledge, try asking them more direct questions, ones that can’t be answered using ‘yes’ or ‘no’.
Here are 19 questions to ask instead of ‘how was your day’?
1. Did you see anything weird happen today?
2. What was the yummiest thing you ate?
3. Tell me the worst thing that happened to you today?
4. What was the most exciting thing you did?
5. Who wasn’t at school today and why?
6. Did someone do something funny today, what was it?
7. Tell me three things you learned at school today?
8. Was your teacher in a happy mood today?
9. What did your friends have for lunch?
10. Did anyone do anything that made you sad today?
11. Do you think your teacher was happy with you today?
12. Who did you see that made you laugh today?
13. Tell me two reasons why you love school?
14. Did you have to meet any new people today?
15. What funny thing did your library, sports or music teacher do today?
16. Who got in trouble today?
17. Did something really noisy annoy you today?
18. Tell me five things you played today?
19. Is there anything you wished you didn’t have to do today?
Just remember, you’re not always going to like their answers to some of the above the questions; in fact you’ll probably get sad or mad about what has happened during the day.
But keep in mind that flying off the handle or judging their behaviour could prevent them from spilling their guts in the future.
So maybe instead of jumping in with solutions that might make them feel incompetent, maybe start a discussion about how they might do things differently.
Meanwhile, here are 5 phrases you can use to boost your child’s self esteem.