20 questions to really get your kids talking

Getting kids to open up – or even just describe their day as anything more than “good” – can be a battle. It all comes down the good questions, and the right timing.

Most parents will be familiar ith the same one-word answer when they ask their children how their day was: “Good”.

Or more frustratingly perhaps, “can’t remember”.

Getting kids to divulge a few more details about their busy days can be tricky – but it can be done, with some cleverly worded questions and good timing.

The Quirky Kid Clinic co-founder and principal psychologist Dr Kimberley O’Brien says it is better not to bombard kids with questions as soon as they walk out of the classroom.

“Kids need to feel relaxed and that might not happen right after school, but at bedtime they’re often ready to download,” she says.

“One to two questions can often be better and just see where it goes. Facing them front-on when asking questions can often be intimidating too – so lying down next to them, or being in the car, will often get them talking.”

Kids need to feel relaxed and that might not happen right after school, but at bedtime they’re often ready to download.

To get your kids chatting on the way home from school, around the dinner table or as you’re tucking them in to bed, here are some questions to ask:

  • What was your favourite part of your day?
  • What was your least favourite part of the day?
  • What’s your favourite subject at school?
  • What was the most challenging thing you did today?
  • How did you help someone today?
  • Who did you play with/sit with today?
  • What games or activities did you play today?
  • What was one thing that made you happy today?
  • What was one thing that made you sad today?
  • What’s something you learnt today?
  • What do you hope to learn tomorrow?
  • What were you grateful for today?
  • What’s one thing you would change about today?
  • Who are your friends and why?
  • What are you most looking forward to?
  • What things are worrying you right now?
  • If you didn’t have to go to school today where do you wish you could go?
  • What do you hope to do when you grow up?
  • If you could change the world, what would you change?

Whether you have one child or seven, asking all of these questions every single night would be pretty much impossible – no one would ever finish their dinner!

But by mixing them up, keeping it light hearted and fun and making sure you’re fully engaged, you might just learn a few things.

The team at House of Wellness TV asked a group of parents and their children to sit down and talk through some of life’s biggest and most important topics, including death, bullying, peer pressure and body image.

Watch what the parents said about what they learned from their children:

Written by Sally Heppleston