New Parents: On Getting Children to Talk

Once your children are able to walk, talk and be away from you, you might want to converse with them about things that will make them aware of people, places and things that could quite possibly cause them harm.  Don't leave it up to the school to teach your children about things like good touch and bad touch, good manners and bad ones, and stranger danger.  Create your own lesson plans and start talking!

Discuss good touch, bad touch.

Tell children about protecting their private parts and not allowing adults and children to touch them unless they are hurt.  If so, show them how doctors touch and teachers so that they recognize what is good and bad touch.  Verbalize what would be considered bad touch and tell them why they shouldn't let people hurt them.

Talk about good girls and guys, bad guys and girls.

These conversation works well with the previous one, because it tells children that not everyone who smiles, laughs or brings them something nice is a friend.  Show them examples of children who were hurt because they followed a man to a car.  Role-play with someone or with their toy figures so that children further understand what you mean.

Encourage children to share stories about their days.

You can use their daily experiences to teach them other things like: how to be polite, how to share, how to act when others are acting badly, and more.  Sometimes you can use a book, a toy or someone to trigger thoughts in your child's mind about things they did or said while you were away.  Ask questions about how something made them feel and what they did to handle a situation.  Always smile and watch your tone of voice so that children will want to talk to you.  Don't tell them what you will do to someone because they did something to your child.  You don't want your child to be scared and start keeping secrets because they don't want to anger you--so act calmly.

Draw pictures or do other projects with your child.

Children will talk more especially boys when they are busy with something else like building something, eating, drawing, or putting something away, so do invite your child to talk by using the activities they are doing to start dialoging.

Use gifts, money, candy, fun places to visit, and other things to keep children talking.

When you give children nice things because they are doing such a "good job, playing nicely, being polite"  they will be more likely to continue conversing with you.

Be watchful for other opportunities to talk and teach your children.  Make yourself approachable.  Sometimes simply sitting down and watching a child play or do something else will move him or her to come over and talk to you. 

Many children grow up to be some of the best communicators because they had people around them who enjoyed talking and listening to them.

Nicholl McGuire also maintains a parenting blog here.

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Over 20 years office work experience, six years completed college coursework, background in print media and communications, recognized for exceptional attendance and received merit increase for past job performance, self-published author and part-time entrepreneur, Internet marketing and social media experience. Interned for non-profit organization, women's group and community service business. Additional experience: teaching/training others, customer service and sales. Learn more at Nicholl McGuire and Nicholl McGuire Media

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