Gabrielle, from the iFamily Mom Squad, shares some great tips for fun car games that will encourage communication with your kiddos! Take a look…
Popcorn and Other Fun Things to Do in the Car
“How was your day?” I’d ask from behind the steering wheel.
My daughter would always have a story about something that happened that day, but I noticed that my son tended to be a bit less talkative than his sister. I found an article that said in order to encourage communication, that I should stop asking that question, as it generally elicits a one or two word response. The article suggested asking questions that would require a different answer every day.
“What did you have for lunch?”
“What was the best (or worst) thing that happened at school today?
I took those ideas and ran with them. We made up games to play in the car that required better communication skills. Here are a few you might want to play with your family.
In elementary school, we used to play this game during read aloud time. We’d all sit in a circle with the same book. The teacher would call on someone to read. At any given moment that student could stop reading, say “Popcorn” and call on another student to continue the story. It was a good way to see who was actually paying attention.
We modify the game by making up the story as we go along, and once a person says popcorn, they give up their rights to the story. The best thing about this game is that it requires everyone to listen first, and speak second.
This game is one of my favorites. In this game, we ask the rest of our family to answer questions about ourselves. We ask things like “What’s my favorite color?” or “What’s my favorite restaurant?” Sometimes the answers are downright comical. Other times, you’ll be surprised at the accuracy of the answers you get. Your children are watching more closely than you think. It’s also a great way to figure out what makes your kids tick, without having to ask directly. A word of caution. Do not ask your kids when your birthday is. Depending on how old they are, they may not get it right. A mad mommy pretty much sucks all the fun out of that game.
Would You Rather
This game teaches children to compare and contrast. It also teaches them decision-making. One person asks everyone else in the car would they rather do one thing or the other. The rest of us make our choices and sometimes we debate the merits of those choices. For instance, a common question is: “Would you rather have chocolate ice cream or vanilla ice cream?” The questions can get repetitive. My toddler says the same thing every time she gets to pose a question. But every now and then, the kids are hit with a creative burst, and all of us are caught off guard.
My son is no longer the quietest person in the car. In fact, he’s usually the one asking to play one of the games. The games created a fun and safe way for him to express himself. They teach him skills he will use the rest of his life. They have also provided the rest of us with hours of family entertainment. I hope they will do the same for you.
From iFamily to Yours,