I never thought I’d write about getting my kids to talk.
Because they talk a lot. Or make noise. Is this the same?
Seriously though, they are v-e-r-b-a-l.
But as my daughter moves into her tween years with her brother at her heels, I’m realizing that while they are still talking, they aren’t telling me as much as they used to.
It’s part of growing up, internalizing, maturing, thinking through some of life’s rough spots.
But this is when I really want them to open up. I want them to know that sometimes I feel different in this world, alone. I want them to tell me when their heart aches and they feel afraid. I want to know the last time they cried.
I want to walk with them, not just beside them.
I’ve told y’all about our dinner routine. It has really opened the door to some amazing communication. Recently, we’ve add this little book (150 Quick Questions to Get Your Kids Talking by Mary DeMuth) to our routine. It has taken us down a road of deep thoughts, engaging conversations and just good family time.
(I’m just digging into some of Mary DeMuth’s parenting books and I’m learning a lot!)
So, how do you get your kids talking:
- Ask them questions–and not just “how was school?” Dig deep. Don’t press for answers though. We offer a FREE PASS on all questions. But just because they don’t answer immediately, doesn’t mean they aren’t processing and may even open up later.
- Answer the questions yourself–our kids need to hear about our own failures and struggles. They need to know that a VERY long time ago, you roller-skated out of the bathroom at a junior high party with toilet paper wrapped tightly around your skates, only to be mocked by party-goers. Not that it happened to me. *ahem*
- Accept their answers-the other night a question came up and I was very surprised at my kid’s answers! I wanted to say “well, what you really mean is…” but I stopped myself and just listened. They were giving the answer they knew and I realized I needed to do a better job teaching them in that area.
How do you really get your kids talking? Leave a comment and you’ll be entered to win one of three copies of Mary’s book, 150 Quick Questions to Get Your Kids Talking.