Now that school is back in session, I’d like to give you a few tips to get your PreKPal to open up and talk about their day. I know you are eager – but give them a little down time. Maybe play some fun music in the car instead of talking. Everyone needs a few minutes to decompress.
Don’t ask broad questions. “What did you do today?” covers a huge expanse of time for a 4-year-old. Be specific. Sit with your child and color, play with playdoh, or have a snack. When their hands are busy, their mind can open up, and the conversation is more natural.
Ask questions like:
- Who did you play with at recess?
- What funny thing happened?
- In what way were you kind?
- Did you build anything cool with blocks?
- Sing your favorite song from school!
- How were you helpful?
- Who was kind to you?
- Who had the yummiest snack?
PreKPals love to share. They love to tell everything about their day if you ask them in specific ways. Time is abstract to four-year olds. One of my newest PrekPals is fond of asking me, “Hey, Mrs. Jenne’? Will you help me build a big house with the Magna-Tiles... you know? Like we did last year?” (We’d been in school for 6 days at this point). See? Six days? Last year? It’s all the same to the PreKPals. I promise if you ask in the right way, you will learn way more than you ever wanted to know.
Alicia Jenne’ is a veteran teacher of little people. She is the PreK Pals Lead Teacher for PreK#1 at Rock Quarry Elementary School.