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Use Open Ended Questions For Children To Get To Know Your Kids

Updated on June 30, 2011

Using open ended questions for children is a great way to get them talking at the dinner table or anywhere else. Instead of getting the standard yes or no answer from your kids, you can get a lot more information with open ended questions. Examples can be found online or with prepackaged sets of questions such as Table Topics, found at specialty boutique stores or online. Having a good supply of open ended questions to ask children can go a long way toward opening up long term, meaningful communication between adults and children.

Click here for a list of open ended questions.

Open Ended Questions Open Up Dialogue

The real goal of communication should be interaction. While there are time you need to simply get an answer from your child, far more often you can use common open ended questions to really understand the way your child thinks—not to mention deeper insight into his or her dominant personality traits.

Here are a few get to know you questions for kids to get you started:

  • Do you ever have a dream that comes back over and over? If so, what is it like?
  • What would you do if you were invisible for a day?
  • If you could trade lives with somebody you know, who would it be?

Open Ended Questions For Preschoolers

It’s never too early to engage your child in meaningful conversation through open ended questions. Early childhood is the perfect time to start this method of communication. Not only will you get to know your child better, you may get some valuable quotes for the family scrapbook.

Some open ended questions to get very young children talking:

  • What is the grossest thing you can think of?
  • How do you describe me to your friends?
  • What do you think is beyond the stars?

Examples of Open Ended Questions for Children

Use the following to get you started with open-ended questions. Examples here are just a suggestion. They give you an idea of how to structure any kind of question to illicit a substantive response.

Examples of open ended questions children will actually want to answer:

  • What do you think are the characteristics that make a good parent?
  • If you could decorate our whole house, what would it look like?
  • Tell me about something I never knew you did when you were little.

For more samples of open ended questions see the article, Top 50 Open Ended Questions For Sparking Conversation With Kids.

Image Credit: rolands.lakis, Flickr


Submit a Comment

  • theherbivorehippi profile image

    theherbivorehippi 7 years ago from Holly, MI

    Great advice!!

  • rprcarz50 profile image

    rprcarz50 7 years ago

    Thank you for this great informative Hub! No matter how old you are you will always deal with children somewhere in your life.


    As Always Also a2z50

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    Communication with your children. Great ideasa.

  • msorensson profile image

    msorensson 7 years ago

    Oh.. this is a great idea, Lela.

    In fact this is, by instinct, how I dialogue, with my son when he was growing up. He is now the undisputed State Champion for policy debate in the State of Louisiana.