Help kids to learn gratitude and life skills words with these Family Conversation Starter cards (with FREE printables!) that focus on words related to life lessons & the holidays!
As we enter the holiday season, I always find myself explaining words to my kids.
They'll hear a word in a holiday song or someone talking about being 'grateful' or 'appreciative' and ask "What does that mean?"
So many words are learned during our life experiences -- and many of these are pretty BIG words so they aren't taught in the classroom until kids are in middle or high school.
So this week, we're sharing a set of FREE Family Conversation Starters along with a fun way to learn a few of those words during the holiday season.
Family Conversation Starters: Free Printable Cards for Kids
The inspiration for this activity and set of conversation cards came after reading a few books by author Amy Krouse Rosenthal, who has a very unique way of communicating everyday experiences with humor. I'm included affiliate links for each title so you can learn more about the books.
First, I recommend that every parent read One Of Those Days, a story about how one or two things can really alter a child's view of the day.
It's a great book for those of us who might have forgetten what it was like to be a kid and have a 'not-big-enough day' or a 'feeling-left-out day'. Such a perfect story to help us reconnect with the feelings our kids might have after "One of Those Days" and a wonderful prompt to encourage us to share stories of how we may have felt growing up and going through similar experiences.
We also read the 'Cookie' books. Each of these books chooses some great vocabulary words and puts them in kid-speak!
I love the idea of building a child's vocabulary by using examples from their daily life.
Christmas Cookies: Bite-Size Holiday Lessons are our two favorites!
Most kids might be confused when hearing words such as 'tradition', 'perserverance' and 'integrity'. However, these books allow the words become more familiar and offer great opportunities for a parent-child discussion.
As we read the books, I created a set of Conversation Cards that include the word along with a defination.
There are 36 cards in our Family Conversation set (grab your free printable below!) along with some blank cards where you can write out other words that your kids may want to use for this activity.
Creating a Family Conversation Jar
To create a Family Conversation Jar, you'll need the follow items:
- the free set of Conversation Starters
- white cardstock paper (or if you prefer, colored cardstock paper life we used)
- a jar, bowl or container to hold your cards
- an inquisitive kid or two ;)
We cut out the cards, folded them and placed them in a special jar that we keep on the dinner table. We used orange and red paper so the jar fit in with our Thanksgiving decor and was bright & colorful.
I also chose to fold the words so that each day it would be a surprise as to what word we would discuss!
Each day, my daughter chose a card from the jar and we discussed how the word may have applied to something that happened that week.
Not only is this a way to build vocabulary, but it's the perfect conversation starter activity for families to learn about things that may have happened over the past few days!
I included many of the words that relate to the upcoming holiday season, such as gratitude and charitable, knowing that we are likely to be using these words more in the coming weeks.
Use the blank cards provided to include other words that you think will communicate to your child or spark a conversation.
Oh yes, and the third book I mentioned!
We found a very cute illustration of table manners in the shape of the periodic table in The Wonder Book, so we also used this as a fun jumping-off place to talk about table manners at mealtime!
Get your FREE set of Conversation Starters!
I hope this activity inspires you to have some fun family conversations as we enter the busy holiday seasons!!
More Holiday Activities for Families: