We just bought “Would You Rather ... ?” which features questions such as: “Would you rather find out your parents are secretly spies or aliens?” and “Would you rather have seven samurai sworn to protect you or 500 hamsters?”
Randomly selected, questions that are not personal give kids the freedom to open up without feeling something is at stake. Plus they get to learn all kinds of things about their parents, too, making conversation entertaining enough to keep even the most devoted phone-checkers engaged (and hoping mom and dad are spies).
Esther J. Cepeda is a columnist for the Washington Post Writers Group. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.