The high low dinner conversation is a family tradition for many.
And no it’s not where your family takes a guess at the high and low temperature of the day (lol).
It’s used by parents to get your Tween, Teen and/or entire family diving deep into meaningful dinner conversations.
The earlier you start doing this with your children, the better.
What is the High Low Dinner Conversation
The idea behind the high low dinner table conversation is just to go around the table and give the high and low point of your day.
As Dr. Lisa Damour points out in the podcast episode, above, kids don’t necessarily want to think about their day. For them, it’s a long, often boring, seven-ish hour stretch of their lives that they’re happy to have in the rear view mirror. They don’t want to relive it.
That’s why asking the usual, “how was your day?” or “how was school?” are likely NOT getting you the meaningful conversation you’re looking for. The response probably sounds a lot more like, “fine.”
With the high/low conversation, though, you’re asking about a very specific moment of the day (and therefore are much more likely to get a very specific answer).
And as others we have interviewed have also pointed out, the high/low conversation also gives you, Mom and Dad, a chance to talk about the high and low points of your own days.
Your kids have the chance to see that your day isn’t all sunshine and rainbows. You have bad days and have to use healthy strategies for coping with them. You overcome challenges. You bounce back and keep moving forward.
Modeling resiliency can help teach it to your children, while also helping them learn how to manage their own stress and anxiety.
The High Low Dinner Conversation Isn’t Working
As Dr. Damour points out, sometimes kids come to the dinner table hungry and just want to sit there quietly and eat.
And that’s okay!
On other occasions, they may just not be interested in discussing (or even thinking about) the school day at all.
Which is why it’s so important to have other conversation starters in your back pocket, questions that are light and fun but also guaranteed to create a conversation that could lead to an even more meaningful conversation later.
Here’s a list of 31 questions that have been downloaded by thousands of parents that we know you’ll love.
It’s also important to be willing to talk to kids when and where they want to talk. It may not be over the dinner table, it may be a few hours later or even just before bed. Car rides can also be a great chance for meaningful discussion.
Conclusion: High Low Dinner Conversation Starter
If you’re looking for an easy way to get your children to open up around the dinner table (or in the car), give the high low dinner conversation starter a try.
This is an easy way to get kids to open up and talk about their day, without just getting the standard response that their day was “fine.” And if this still doesn’t work for you, give our list of 31 questions a try. Families are amazed at the conversations they’re having around the table with the help of this list.