Open Ended Questions: The past

Our goal this month is to improve our skills at asking open ended questions, so that we can get to know one another over time.  This week we are getting to know each other's past.  Here are some questions to get you started:

  • How would you compare yourself as a mother/father to your own mother/father?
  • How have you changed in the last year?
  • What legacy do you want our family to take from your family? From your culture? 
  • What are some unfulfilled things in your life?
  • How has your outlook in life changed in the past 2 years?
  • What were the highlights and low-lights of your adolescence?
  • If you could re-do any decade of your life, which decade would you choose and why?  
  • How have you changed as a daughter or son?  
  • How have you changed as a brother or sister?  
  • What relatives have you felt closest to and why?  
  • Who has been the most difficult person in your life (other than a partner or spouse) and why?  
  • Who was your childhood hero or heroine and why?  

Check out the Gottman Card Decks app for more.

Or improve your skills at a Bringing Baby Home class.  

Baby Cues

This month we are exploring how to build our family’s emotional bank account by responding to each other’s needs. We are working to become more aware of how we each express our needs (bids). This week we are exploring the ways that infants and toddlers express their needs. We know that in the early stages of language development, parents have to be the detective to figure out what the cries, sounds, and movements mean. Over time, babies figure out that they can use their cries, sounds, and movements to have an impact on the people in their world. “They don’t realize that these sounds and actions have any meaning until their caregivers consistently respond to them. In this way, children gradually learn that the messages they send without words have an effect on other people, and they start to send these messages intentionally.” ( So as we respond to our children’s sounds, gestures, facial expressions, and movements, we are filling their emotional bank accounts, teaching them that the world is a safe place, and also laying the foundation for future communication development.


Here are some additional resources to help us to improve our skills at reading our children’s cues:

Newborn Cues (YouTube video) 

Understanding Your Baby's Cues (YouTube video)

Baby Cues that Say "I'm Tired" (article with video)

Tired Signs in Infants and Toddlers (article with video)