How to get your child to open up about his or her day at school.
You know the drill. You've picked up your child from school and you ask "how was your day?" to which the response is a "good" or "okay" with no elaboration.
Alternatively you may have asked, "What did you do at school today?" only for your child to reply with "stuff" or "lots of things," which doesn't really tell you anything either.
This can be infuriating as a parent, because we miss them when we're separated from them each day, and we're curious to know what they do and learn. It's especially annoying if your child used to attend a childcare centre where you received daily updates on their activities and photos to accompany them! On the flip side children grow tired and when it's home time, they just want to rest and not think about school anymore.
The trick to getting more information is to ask your child the right questions to stimulate conversation - open-ended, engaging questions, which require more than the usual "yes" or "no" to reply.
So instead of giving up, try asking some of the following questions when you collect your child from school and see whether your child opens up a little more about his or her day:
1. Tell me about your favourite moment of your day today.
2. Who did you play with at lunchtime/recess today and what did you do?
3. What did your classmates do today that made you laugh?
4. Tell me something new you learned today.
5. Tell me about the hardest part of your day today.
6. What did you read today?
7. What was the best thing your teacher said or did today?
8. What did your friends eat for lunch?
9. What are you looking forward to tomorrow/later this week?
10. Which child brought in something for show-and-tell today and what was it?
Is there anything else you can think of to add to this list to help your kids open up at the end of the school day?