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“How was your day at school?” Fine. “What did you do?” Nothing.

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Child Doesn't Want to Talk About Their Day

The new school year starts tomorrow and no doubt you’ll be eager to find out everything that is going on at school. Good luck trying to get a good answer out of your children.  They usually are pretty tight-lipped.  Here is why:

1) You grill them too frequently about every little thing and they’d like a bit more space and privacy in their life away from home.

2) You respond too critically when they do share with you: “You should have told tell the teacher he pushed you,” or “Don’t play with him at recess, he is too rough,” or, “If you sat still you wouldn’t be yelled at by Mrs. Hunt.”

3) They honestly can’t answer a question as vague as “How was school today?”  Instead try smaller questions like “Who did you sit beside at snack time?” “What was your favorite song from circle time today” “Did you go to the gym?”

It’s okay if they don’t want to share about school.  It’s nice you show you care by asking, but you also show your faith in them to be doing just fine out in the big world by not pumping them for information either.

Hope this helps and have a great school year!

About Alyson

Alyson has been blogging parenting advice for over 15 years. She has been a panelist at BlogWest, Blissdom, #140NYC and more. Her content appears on sites across Canada and the US, but you can read all her own blog posts right here.

More about Alyson

3 Responses to ““How was your day at school?” Fine. “What did you do?” Nothing.”

  1. LisaConsiglioR

    Great tips…nice to get a refresher. I always tend to ask the “How was your day?!” question with no response. Being more specific will help.

  2. Tilly

    I realized how much I disliked the answers “I don’t know” and “nothing” long before my kids were in school. My husband’s family doesn’t talk much.
    I learned to be creative with them which helped with my kids.
    A few q’s that seem to get an enthusiastic (ok, ok, maybe not enthusiastic) response:
    Coolest/grossest thing you saw at lunch?
    Funniest thing today? (usually leads to a story which is not funny to me, but …..)
    Who brought snack, what was it?
    We also talk about if anyone had trouble either by teachers or with other friends. Kids usually give decent play by play and then they know I am going to ask what they think about it and how they would have handled it(as teacher or student). That’s not an everyday question as I don’t want to focus on it.
    Just a few ideas.

  3. Alyson Schafer

    Love those additions! I gotta say – it really helps being a creative thinker when your parenting. I know that is not a first instinct for all.
    Keep posting!


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