Bringing education outside the classroom
Tap tap, tap tap tap tap tap… Are the only sounds at your dinner table the sounds of tapping on an iPhone?
As a parent, maybe you’re terrified your child will end up like one of those clueless people on a late night talk show segment, without even the slightest idea of the Vice President’s name.
Most kids aren’t going to spend hours reading up on current events or scanning the cable news channels, but you can introduce them to some of the broader things happening in the world, and show them how what seems obscure can actually directly impact their life.
Dinnertime is the perfect opportunity to open dialogue with your kids.
These discussions don’t have to be full of expert debates or require a quiz at the end, but you can casually broach some of the broader-reaching subjects. By doing this, you’ll give your child the opportunity to engage and develop his or her own opinions and values, while being informed.
Tips for Tackling Current Events Discussions
• Most children don’t want to feel as if they’re in the classroom when they’re eating dinner with their family—so approach current events discussions in a way that your child will find interesting. Make it relevant to your child’s life.
• Talking about current events as a family is a good way to help your child learn about your family’s values and also create her own. Your child may not even realize how she feels about a certain subject until she begins talking about it.
• While talking about current events is important, it shouldn’t take over the entire dinner discussion. Have a few moments where you open up the dialogue, and then move onto a new topic when everyone has expressed their opinions.
• Use current events as a way to broach more personal and challenging subjects. This can be particularly good as a way to help older kids and teenagers understand the implications of their actions.
Top 3 Benefits of Current Events Conversations
Many parents find it difficult to connect with their children, and the dinner table is the perfect time to introduce discussions, and help your child find her own voice.
When you include current events in these dinnertime discussions
- You’re helping your kids to develop an independent value system
- You’re giving them the opportunity to gain a deeper and more personalized understanding of the world around them.
- You’re doing your parenting job by teaching them character.
Do you talk about current events over the dinner table, or at all, with your children?