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Connection Corner

6 questions to ask your children as they head back to school


The school year is here once again!  It can feel overwhelming to get all the school supplies ready and schedules organized, let alone take first day of school pictures, or any of the many traditions people have for going back to school!  However, it is important to take a moment and celebrate the little things – that your child is a year older and is changing and growing every day. One great way to celebrate the start of the school year and document how much they are changing is a “First Day of School Interview”.  Take a few moments to ask your children a few or all of these questions:

  • What grade are you going into?
  • What are you excited about this year?
  • What do you want to be when you grow up?
  • By the end of the year, what do you want to be able to do?
  • What is your favorite book?
  • What are you most proud of?

You can do this in a variety of ways- have them write down their answers (it is fun to see their handwriting along the way), write their answers while they talk or video tape them.  Any way you do it, this will be a fun way to look back on what was important to them at different times in their childhood.



Judy Schmidt provides leadership to 4-H metro programming in Peoria County. Schmidt joined Extension in 2001, working as a Youth Development Educator at the East Peoria Center and joined the Fulton-Mason-Peoria-Tazewell unit in 2011. Her work focuses on 4-H youth development programming in the local metropolitan area, specifically leading positive youth development initiatives for after-school programs, community groups, 4-H clubs and other youth-serving organizations. Her areas of expertise include positive youth development principles, youth leadership, and work with teens as teachers.

Schmidt attended the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign for her bachelor's degree in psychology and also for her master's degrees in Social Work and Marriage and Family Therapy. She is a certified facilitator of the Matrixx System/Real Colors program by the National Curriculum and Training Institute.


Connection Corner:  is a blog that provides timely information, activities, and resources to help you stay connected to loved ones, the world around you, and yourself.