By Camille Mihalik, CHC's Director, Shelley and Steven Einhorn Communication Center
It's the first day of school and you've packed the lunchbox, dressed your kids in their best, made sure their hearing devices were charged and ready, took the pictures, waved goodbye and . . . exhaled.
In Search of After-School Conversation
Hopefully, summer has been full of fun and you made memories, but today you get a parent-break! Sometime around lunch you are sure to be missing those little faces, and by the time you're picking them up or coming home from work, you are ready to hear all about their day!
But . . . the conversation leaves much to be desired.
"How was your day, sweetheart?"
"So what did you do at school that was 'good'?"
[Insert dramatic sigh here]
What You Can Do
What's a curious parent to do? For starters, please check out my contribution to a prior blog post on this topic called It Takes a Village. It contains several tips for parents along with sample questions sure to get your child chatting away.
In formulating your question, you'll want to keep a narrow focus at first—asking a broad question typically gets a broad answer (e.g., "Good").
Also, it's helpful to insert some news from your own day to help organize their thoughts even more.
Effective Conversation Starters
Here are some ideas for questions that should promote more meaningful conversation. "I ate lunch during a meeting today. Who did you sit with at lunch?"
"What activity did you do during free time?"
"Did you learn any new games in PE?"
"We have a new employee at work—we met today during our staff meeting. Did you meet anyone new in class this year?"
"I am almost done with that book I was reading. What did you read about today?"
Tell Us What Works for You!
How about you? What has worked for your family to get everyone talking about their day? We'd love to hear from you in the comments below! Please use the bottom below to contact me about this or any other topic related to your child's speech, language and listening needs.
Wishing you all a wonderful school year!