Get Your Child Talking After School

by Liz McNairy, School Counselor
The infamous conversation heard at the end of the school day: 
Parent: “How was your day?”
Child: “Good.”
Parent: “What did you learn?”
Child: “Nothing.”
A student’s day is filled with so many exciting moments, so why is this the conversation and how can we make a shift? 

Sharing about your day
Modeling is an excellent strategy in teaching children! By sharing a highlight of your day, you are allowing your child(ren) to be a witness to your thought process. 
By consistently sharing about your day and inviting your child(ren) to share about theirs, children can begin to expect this as part of their after-school routine.

Be specific
Processing a full day in order to tell someone about it can be an overwhelming task for the developing brain. Children may want to share and may not know where to start. Try asking a more specific question such as one of the following: 
• Tell me about a moment today when you felt proud of yourself? 
• What is something that made you laugh today?
• How did you help someone today? How did someone help you today?

Positive feedback can help children to feel better about themselves and more motivated. When praising, it is important to be sincere and specific. Think about encouraging their process and their character. 
• "You've been practicing, and your improvement really shows it!"
• "You sound so joyful sharing that memory of laughing with a friend."
• "You really took your time to share a moment of your day with me. Thank you!"
As you make time for these conversations, remember to have patience and aim for consistency. Reflection and conversation is a skill and one that children are learning. For more information, please feel free to reach out to me at