Our kids are growing up in a digital world, surrounded by screens: from TVs and computers to tablets, games consoles and smartphones. While digital technology is a useful tool to support learning, children also need lots of face-to-face interaction to develop their speaking and listening skills. And, by showing them that what they have to say is worth listening to, you’ll encourage them to share more with you.
Here are some fun conversation starters and related activities to get your little one chatting:
- If you were an animal what would you be? Why?
Help your child make a mask of their chosen animal. Challenge them to move around the room like the animal would.
- Who’s your favourite storybook character. Can you pretend to be them? What would they eat for lunch?
Design a home for the character in an empty shoe box. What kinds of things would they have in their house?
- If you were a dinosaur, which one would you be? Why?
Find some dinosaur figures. Can your child put them in order from the smallest to the biggest, the shortest to the tallest, the friendliest to the scariest?
- Would you rather be a pirate or a spaceman? Why?
Bury some play money in the sandpit and see how much ‘treasure’ your child can find. Add some glitter and stars to playdough and create your own planets.
- What made you laugh today?
Make some funny food faces with fruit, or on a piece of toast or pizza.
- Which is your favourite sense? Why? What would life be like without it?
Go on a colour walk. Colour in blocks of different colours on a card, and challenge your child to spot something of that colour during the walk.
Find lots more ideas at The Family Dinner Project.
Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust runs a confidential secure text messaging service for parents of children aged 0-19 years called Chat Health. The service operates Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm, excluding bank holidays. All texts will be responded to by a public health nurse (health visitor/school nurse) within 24 hours. Outside of the service working hours, you’ll receive a message back to inform you that your text will be responded to once the line reopens.
Should you require urgent health advice in the meantime, please contact your GP, visit an NHS walk-in centre or call NHS 111. For emergencies, dial 999 or visit A&E.
Leicester City: text 07520 615381
Leicestershire & Rutland: text 07520 615382