Does this sound familiar when your child comes home from school?
How was your day? Fine.
How was school? Good.
How was the test? Okay.
Anything else to tell me? Nope.
Not much going on there! These are sure-fire conversation killers.
And whatever question you do ask, don't ask it as soon you walk in the door. When asked about that, a group of middle school girls responded that after six or more hours in school, the last thing they want to talk about is what happened there. They need time to decompress, too.
No guarantees, but here are a few alternatives for opening up a conversation after school:
* What's the best thing that happened today?
* Who did something nice for you?
* How did you make a difference?
And one more tip -- ask open-ended questions. If you ask a yes-no question, yes or no is all you'll get.