Two Ways We Open The Lines Of Communication With Our Children During The School Year

Communicating with today’s generation of kids, isn’t easy. But we are changing that in our household! Learn two ways to open the lines of communication with children, especially during the school year.

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Communicating with today’s generation of kids, isn’t easy. But we are changing that in our household! Learn two ways to open the lines of communication with children, especially during the school year.

 

Let’s face it, communicating with the children of this generation isn’t easy. However, there are ways to open lines of communication, especially during the school year.

Many children have a better relationship with their friends and technology than they do with their parents. But, in our home that is changing!

We decided over 10 years ago that our family would be our priority after God and our marriage. If we wanted a better relationship with our children regardless of their age; we were going to have to find ways to open the lines of communication.

We have to admit this was not easy to do. At the time, our daughter was 6 and our son was 12 so you know how that goes. Our daughter, bless her heart, is feisty and free spirited. Our son at the age of 12 was attached to his video games, and conversations with us were taking up his “game time.”

As a result, we came up with two simple ideas that began to open the door up to our conversations that we still do to this day.

Two Ways To Open Lines Of Communication

Snack and Talk Time

Snack and talk time is similar to something you may have heard us talk about called “couch time.” Couch time is time we take around the couch to talk about what’s happening in each other’s lives, prayer requests, etc.

However, snack and talk time, is especially for when the kids come home from school. We take a few moments to prepare a snack, or cold drink in the warm months or a cup of hot chocolate in the winter months, and talk about how the school day went.

 Communicating with today’s generation of kids, isn’t easy. But we are changing that in our household! Learn two ways to open the lines of communication with children, especially during the school year.

We don’t put a time frame on our snack and talk time; because we let the kids talk as long as they need to about their day.

This gives us a glimpse into their world. It shows them that we care about them, and their friends. However, most importantly it keeps the lines of communication open. As it is in these conversations, we can get to the root of troubled relationships, conflicts with teachers, or simply celebrating their achievements.

Highs And Lows At Dinner

Another way we open the lines of communication is when we have family dinner. We go around the table sharing our highs and lows of the day.

With a high school and college student, we’re all running in different directions. However, we’ve made it our family tradition that at least one day a week we set aside what we call Family Dinner.

No matter your schedule, everyone knows on THIS DAY everyone must be home for dinner. And on those nights, we go around and share the highs and lows of our day. (On a side note, we change the family dinner night each school year to reflect the current schedule.)

The beautiful thing about this format is that it allows us to get more intimate in our conversation because we are all together. We are not rushed to go anywhere, or do anything because we put this time aside for us.

Time for us as a family to be there for each other, to share our heart, fears, prayer request or praise reports. We laugh; we cry, and most important, we grow closer together because communication is the doorway to deeper intimacy.

Communication is the doorway to deeper intimacy. Click To Tweet

The Impact

As parents, we think it is vital that we instill these communication principles to our children now. So when they become husbands and wives; fathers and mothers, they will have learned how to communicate at a deeper level instead of having surface conversations.

With all that is happening in our world today, open lines of communication is important! If we don’t show that we care about their world, they will hesitate to share with us, and seek a listening ear somewhere else.

“So commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these words of mine. Tie them to your hands and wear them on your forehead as reminders. 19 Teach them to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up. 20 Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates, 21 so that as long as the sky remains above the earth, you and your children may flourish in the land the Lord swore to give your ancestors.”
~ Deuteronomy 11:18-21 (NLT)

Do you have a unique way of opening the lines of communication with your children? Share them with us in the comments below!

~ André and Timberley Gray

12 Comments

  1. Betsy de Cruz says:

    Hey there, Timberly and Andre. It’s funny, but I did (and do with one remaining daughter at home) those very same things. Since I work from home, I have to be intentional about staying in touch with my daughter. And I also make it a point to sit down together for a mid-afternoon snack. We did highs and lows each evening at dinner. When my kids were younger, I also made it a point to connect before bed with a brief prayer for them. I still do this for my daughter, but now before I go to bed! A brief hug, how are you?, and a prayer.

    • Timberley Timberley says:

      Betsy that is so encouraging to hear how you have made an impact with your family. I love the connection before bed time! Thank you for stopping by to read ~ Blessings

  2. Tammy Rotzoll says:

    With everyone being so connected, we really do have to be intentional about our time with the kids. We had gotten away from sitting around the table for dinner, but with both the boys back home again, we’ve gone back to it. It truly makes a difference in how they open up. Thanks for sharing. I’ve nominated you for The Blogger’s Recognition Award at https://www.footprintsofinspiration.com/the-blogger-recognition-award/.

    • Timberley Timberley says:

      Thank you Tammy for stopping by to read. Having your boys back home at their age makes for some interesting conversations, and what a great opportunity you have to sow into them in this stage of their life. WOW! We are honored that you would nominate us! We will be checking that out and connecting with you on the details. ~ Blessings

  3. Lo says:

    My kiddo is about to start his first full day of school. I think I’m more nervous about it than he is. I like the idea of having time to sit down and just chat with him, be engaged in his life and show interest in the things he is doing at school. Great way to make yourself available as a parent and influencer in your kid’s life.

    • Timberley Timberley says:

      That’s awesome Lo! I am sure both of you will enjoy it! It will make a huge difference when things come up later in the school year. Thank you for stopping by to read. ~ Blessings

  4. Valerie Murray says:

    What a great idea to have “couch” time! I know when my kids come home from school they raid the fridge. I bet your children love coming home to a snack and to such caring parents.

    • Timberley Timberley says:

      Valerie I love it! Raiding the fridge seems to be the thing for all no kids no matter the age. I try to keep the snacks inviting and healthy so they will stick around to eat and talk-haha thank you for reading. ~ Blessings

  5. Nisha says:

    Great ideas! I love the “snack and talk time.” We try to keep the habit of communicating with our children at dinner time.

    I agree, having a designated time to communicate is important for the family bond.

    • Timberley Timberley says:

      Amen Nisha!
      As they get older it’s comforting when they ask for talk time instead of us having to initiate it. Took a few years but by prioritizing the time to bond it became a priority to them. Thank you for reading and sharing! ~ Blessings

  6. Susan Clarke says:

    Thank you so much for this . I think purposeful meaningful conversations are so important and with a new school year fast approaching I will definitely apply this to our daily after school routine ! Thank you and blessings to you and yours !

    • Timberley Timberley says:

      Susan we trust this will add a new dynamic to your daily afternoon routine. Thank you for reading our post. ~ Blessings

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