Answering Children's Questions
How do I answer children’s questions?
· Always value the question, never dismiss it
· Answer the question with a question, for example: “That’s a really good questions, what do you think it means?” This will allow you to ascertain how much the child or young person already knows
· Be aware of your body language, facial expressions and tone of voice – children and young people learn a lot from body language
· Give honest, short, simple answers
· Use correct names for sexual organs and sexual behaviour
· Let children and young people know that others may have different views or values about sexuality
· Teach them that respect for differences is important
· Let them know that you are always available for questions
· Admit when you don’t know the answer and help find it elsewhere
What if I don’t know the answer?
· Don’t make it up – incorrect information is almost worse than no information
· Clarify what your Child means – this will establish what they know and can help you construct your answer
· Children don’t always ask questions at appropriate times - If you are caught unawares tell them, “That’s a really good question - we’ll talk about it when we get home”.
· It is ok not to know the answer and it is ok to say so
· If you cannot answer your Child or young person’s question, be honest and tell them you will get back to them later. You will find a list of resources here to help you
· Suggest the two of you look for the answer together, perhaps on a website – resource list