THE BLOG

Are You Listening to Your Kids?

02/16/2015 04:47 pm ET | Updated Apr 18, 2015

ATTENTION! Are you reading this?

COMMUNICATION! Are you listening?

These are two key elements of life that are so critical in your relationship with your children. Your children need your attention and most importantly value your communication with them.

Communication starts at a fundamental level - talking, asking questions and listening. Your child wants you to be their friend but you have to start the conversation. You also have to listen to what they have to say.

Here is a simple checklist I use when guiding parents through communication hurdles:

Do you know all these things about your children? Do you really spend quality time with your child?

1. What is the name(s) of your child's teacher?

2. What classes does your child take?

3. What homework do they have each night?

4. What book(s) are they reading for class or at night?

5. Who are their friends? What do they do together?

6. Who are they chatting with online? Who are they texting?

7. What does your child really enjoy doing?

8. What activity is their favorite to do on a weekend?

9. What did they do today at school? What specific activity did they have? How was their day today?

10. What is your child's favorite food, favorite movie, favorite sport and/or TV show?

How would you describe your communication with your child?

If you answered six or more of these questions, then you really understand your child and are an involved parent. If you do not know these answers, it is not too late to listen, talk and be a part of your child's life. Communication with your children is one of the fundamental parts of parenting. Pay attention and listen. Start now.