Monday, August 25, 2014

Get Your Teenager Talking, by Jonathan McKee

 Title: Get Your Teenager Talking: Creative Questions, Stories, and Quotes to Start Meaningful Conversations.

Author: Jonathan McKee

Publisher: Bethany House Publisher

Date: May 6, 2014

Paperback: 176

About the author:
Jonathan McKee is an expert on youth culture and the author of more than a dozen books, including The Guy's guide to God, Girls, and the Phone in Your Pocket and The Zombie Apocalypse Survival Guide for Teenagers. He has twenty years of youth-ministry experience and speaks to parents and leaders worldwide. He also writes about parenting and youth culture while providing free resources at Jonathan, his wife, Lori, and their three kids live in California.

About the book:
Let's face it. Teenagers have a PhD in one-word answers...if we don't ask the right questions. In this book, veteran youth expert Jonathan McKee shares 180 creative discussion starters to help teens open up about issues that matter. You'll also find tips for interpreting their responses and follow-up questions. From light-hearted to more serious, these conversation springboards will encourage even the most reluctant teen to talk about friends, school, values, struggles, and much more.

My take:
I was really excited when I saw this book. I thought it would make a great read. Apparently not for me. I know the author has a ton of years of experience with teens, and a couple of books under him, but I just personally thought that he should have went in another direction when it came to this book. I thought that it was going to be more or less on how to be able to sit down and get your teenager to open up. I guess this was his intent. But I didn't get this message from reading this book. I personally don't feel like these random questions are going to do it for your typically teen that doesn't want to talk to their parents. Frankly, I feel like if you approach your teen and ask them one of these random questions, they may look at you like you are crazy. I guess if you were just "talking" and not trying to "communicate" then this book might work. I can see my 16 year old nephew answering the questions for the fun of it, but it wouldn't cause us to have meaningful conversations.

First there are 4 or 5 pages dedicated to how to talk to your teen and then there are 180 creative discussion starters or conversation springboards. These creative discussions are made up of a topic, follow-up questions, insight into the question and quick additions. Some of the questions are "corny" and some of them to make sense. For instance, "If you could eliminate one evil in the world, what would it be and how?" A more meaningful one would be, "Name one thing that someone in our family does for you that helps you the most".

My daughter and I kind of made a game out of it. I just didn't feel like it brought about "meaningful" conversations. I felt like they were just for "the fun of it" type of questions. What works for some doesn't work for others.

This complementary book was given to me by Bethany House for my honest review.

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