Trick or Treat Traditions
Holidays are where many family traditions begin. If your family has traditions around the fall harvest holiday, also known as Halloween, asking the following conversation starting questions may help keep your children safe at the end of October. Whether or not your family participates in the practice of trick or treating throughout the neighborhood or not, you may find they have particular opinions about this holiday event.
What do you like about trick or treating?
Of course, children enjoy the hoards of candy that can be collected as they go door to door, but encourage them to expand their answer to reasons that are not shared by everyone else.
What are some safety issues you can envision regarding trick or treating?
The annual safety checkup about crossing busy streets, wearing reflective clothing, and not eating too many pieces of candy will be the routine answer at most dinner tables. But, ask them to consider long-term consequences and even issues that most parents do not consider before letting their kids go out in the dark. You may be surprised at their intuitive reasoning and praise them for insights that are beyond their years.
What is the scariest thing that has happened while you were trick or treating?
Here it is parents; an opportunity to really listen to your children. As the final question in this conversation starter, this may be the time they trust you and the environment you have created for openness to really share something personal. They may have fears or anxieties surrounding this holiday that only comes out as a result of an intentional discussion. Accept their response and consider your reply carefully. Your reaction may set the course for future candor.
After you have discussed trick or treating, you may want to have a discussion about whether or not it is a good idea for your family to start, stop, or continue the current tradition of trick or treating. Now, there is something to really talk about. For more on the idea of start, stop, and continue see the “Happy New Year” blog.