I’ve written articles on increasing communication in your home and now that it’s back-to-school time, it’s important to ensure there is open communication between you and your children.
So, how do you do that? Children aren’t exactly jumping at the chance to tell you what’s happened during their day, right? When your kids aren’t opening up and telling you everything you need to know, it’s time to get creative while you help them open up.
Children respond well when they feel you want to listen to what they have to say. In fact, people in general will tell you more if they feel like you want to hear what they have to say. One way to make your children feel like you want to hear them is to make them feel special.
With that in mind, one creative way to open up conversation is to combine the idea of lunchbox notes and communication with your child. You know the notes I’m talking about. Some parents simply write, “I love you” whereas others have notes that are more elaborate. If this is something you think you can commit to – even once/week, you’re probably wondering, “Where do I start?”
Below are 10 ideas to help get you started
- Create a loving note with something as simple as “I love you” or “You look wonderful today”.
- Put a joke in their lunchbox and keep the punchline at home with you. Let them pick the next joke.
- Give them a “Get out of…..free” card. It can be a get out of a chore, get out of bedtime (by 30 minutes), or get out of anything that makes sense for you and your family.
- Give them a “Pick a…..” card. Pick a game for family game night, a movie for family movie night, or dinner for any night of the week. Making them feel like their opinion matters will go a long way.
- Find a fun fact of the day, then tell them to come home with a fun fact from their day. There are many sites that will give you fun facts to use.
- Do a riddle of the week. Again, many sites are available to help you along, but the riddles are both fun to figure out and increase their confidence whenever they do.
- Put a story from “back in my day” in their lunchbox. This may inspire them to tell you about their day and create their own “back in my day” stories for their kids.
- Start a story on a tiny sheet of paper by exchanging with a single word or sentence and see how far you can get at the end of a week.
- Put parts of a picture in their lunch to color and at the end of the week, put the pieces together for a complete picture – along with your child.
- Give them an “Ask my any question” card that expires within 24 hours. This can open up quite a bit of conversation!
Conversation with your child doesn’t have to be painful. Make it fun with ideas like this. Have another idea that works in your home? Comment below and tell us about it!