The older my kids get, the faster time seems to be going. The years are whipping by and before long, my oldest child is going to be moving away to go to college. Between work, school, church, sports, and other family obligations, together time is pretty limited. For this reason, I cherish our dinnertime because it is the one time of day where we are all together.
A few years ago, we started a dinner ritual in which we each shared the best best and worst parts of our day. Whoever said the dinner prayer would choose the first person to share, and after that person answered, he or she would pick the next person. I loved this tradition because it gave me a peek into each of the kids’ days and their personalities (and my husband’s), while providing them an opportunity to unload anything that was troubling them about their day.
Not long after we began this new tradition, one of the kids asked if he could offer the next person a question, rather than have them list the good and bad parts of their day. The rest of us figured it would be fun to change things up a little so we agreed to give it a try. This twist made everything about our little dinner game even better. Based on the questions the kids come up with, we get a better view of their interests and an appreciation for their creativity. From the kids’ perspective, I think they all enjoy having the spotlight for at least a few minutes each night when everyone listens to their answers.
If you haven’t already started doing this with your family, here are some suggestions of questions you can use to kick off the dinner conversation:
- What was the best part of your day?
- What was the worst part of your day?
- What was the funniest part of your day?
- What are you most looking forward to tomorrow?
- What is your favorite school memory?
- What is your favorite vacation memory?
- What is your favorite holiday memory?
- What is your favorite dinner?
- What was the best present you’ve ever received and why?
- What do you want to be when you grow up? (For parents: What did you think you would be when you grew up?)
- Tell a story from when you were 4 years old.
- If you could have any super power, what would you choose and why?
- If you could live anywhere, where would it be and why?
- If you could be any animal, what would you be and why?
- What 3 things are you most thankful for?
- If you had one wish, what would you wish for (and it can’t be more wishes)?
- What do you like most about each person in the family?
This is just a list to get you started. I promise you that once you let your kids start making up some questions, you won’t run out of topics.
Corinne Schmitt is a mom of four who blogs regularly at https://wondermomwannabe.com/.