1. I think that the most important thing is just to give your child a breather! Most kids are tired after school so they really need to just give their brain a rest! Make the conversation on the way home about anything they want to talk about. It could be about a TV show they want to watch or even having a friend come over. Wait at least a half an hour before talking about school!
2. Asking your child “How was your day?” doesn’t help the child who usually won’t talk. Things that require one word answers just don’t get anywhere! Questions that require a “yes” or “no” just don’t move any conversation forward. Ask open ended questions such as “Tell me about the game you played at recess today” or “I can’t remember which special you had today” will often get some conversation started.
3. Don’t be so predictable with your questions. You need to vary them up a bit. If kids hear the same questions over and over it makes those that are least talkative just shut down even more. Don’t ask too many questions at one time. Think about how you’d feel if someone were giving you the “third degree” asking you one question after another!
4. Kids usually bring home some paperwork that they’ve completed at school. Use those things to open more conversation. You can discuss their drawings. Have them tell you what they made. Tell them you like the colors they chose. Ask them about their drawing. You can also use other school work to build their self-esteem. Tell them that their writing has improved so much, that you can’t believe that they are learning something so difficult, etc. If every time their papers come out of their backpack and they know there is going to be criticism, they are even less likely to want to show anything to you or even talk about school.
5. Talk to them while they’re doing something. If they’re helping you cook dinner that can be a great time to talk. If they want to play catch in the backyard, talk then. You can even play a board game and talk at the same time.
6. So many parents will say that their child’s friends talk more to them than their own child does. If that’s the case, invite their friends over and get into a school discussion with them. Your own child may join in.
7. Know your child’s school schedule so that you can incorporate it into the discussion. “What game did you play in PE today?” If you know their specials, then you’ll have some other topics to discuss.
8. Dinner time is a great time to talk about your day. You can go around the table and have each family member share a good thing and a bad thing about their day. Lots of discussions can just kick off from there. Kids will also learn that parents have ups and downs too and get used to everyone sharing. Don’t worry if your child says only a few words or just “passes” the first week or so. Kids love the attention that talking gets and if their siblings are talking and getting attention it’s a good reason to chime in!
HAVE FUN WITH YOUR CHILD:
Young At Art
The new museum is amazing! Imagination Activation!
At YAA, the possibilities are as endless as your imagination. Ride a subway, visit a cave and discover a dig in ArtScapes. STOMP to the rhythm, build sand sculptures and recycled puppets in GreenScapes. Learn about faraway customs in CultureScapes. Explore the world of Alice in WonderScapes. Create a masterpiece in every gallery!
751 SW 121st Ave. Davie, FL 33325 954-424-0085. http://youngatartmuseum.org/