Effective Communication Resources

These resources, some created by Smarter Parenting, and others from other organizations, will help you to practice and implement this skill with your child.

Feel free to rewatch the Effective Communication video as many times as you need to.

Research Articles about Effective Communication

Don’t take our word for it. Research shows that Effective Communication is powerful a person can develop to become successful. Successful parents know how to communicate with their children in positive ways. These articles give more information into the science of Effective Communication.

Communication for Effective Parenting discusses the importance of Effective Communication skill for families. Taken from an article from the University of Arkansas for Medical Science.

Activities & Games

The following activities can be helpful in teaching the skill of Effective Communication. You can access some additional crafts and ideas for Effective Communication by clicking HERE.

Communication ball

How to use this activity

This is a simple game and a great conversation starter. Use the Effective Communication steps while playing this game to help you and your child learn each step.

Instructions: Write a selection of questions on a ball. Roll the ball to a family member. Have them answer the question under their thumb. You can download the questions, geared for children or teens, below.


Download the Effective Communication Conversation Ball Starters for Children

Download the Effective Communication Conversation Ball Starters for Teens

Family juggling

How to use this activity

This activity is simple. Each member of the family is passes a ball to another member of the family until every member of the family has touched the ball before going to the original person. This pattern is followed throughout the game. Once you are able to pass the ball to every member of the family without it falling another ball is introduced to the activity. The first person then begins with one ball and when that ball is being passed around the next ball begins circulation.

This activity can be used with the skill of Goal Setting as well. The ultimate goal is to increase the numbers of balls introduced to the group and “juggling” them successfully. The metaphor of communication requires a sender and receiver. It is also a good way to introduce the importance of being “gentle” and “kind” during communication.

Materials needed

3-4 balls. You can also substitute the balls for bean bags and toss them rather than roll them.

Build a structure

How to use this activity

This activity focuses on the importance of listening when communicating. You can use this activity with Jenga blocks, regular blocks or even using different shapes that you cut out of paper. You can use just about anything in your house.

Materials Needed:

Blocks (or anything your child can use to create a structure)

Would you rather

How to use this activity

This activity is easy to play and presents simple questions that can help you explore your child’s thought process. To use the skill of Effective Communication with this activity, follow up responses from your children by asking them to explain their response in more detail and repeating back what they said for clarification.

Materials needed:

  • Would You Rather questions

Puzzle game

How to use this activity

This activity is largely used for the skills of Problem Solving and Working Together. However, it can also be used to talk about the importance of communication.

Materials needed:

  • 24 piece puzzle
  • Timer

Bottle rocket activity

This is a fun activity for a child that is older and likes science or rockets. Cameron explains how to do this activity and explains how you can use the skill of Effective Communication to help your child.

Materials needed:

  • empty 2 liter bottle
  • 2 cups of water
  • 1 cup of vinegar
  • one board with a screw that is at least 2 inches long that is embedded into it
  • cork wrapped with a little bit of duct tape
  • paper towel
  • 2 tablespoons of baking soda

Ready to go further?

Sign up for the Smarter Parenting Club and gain access to additional resources, and most importantly, individualized coaching to assist you with effective communication with your child and much more.

Related Articles & Podcasts



Neisha explains how the Effective Communication helped to avoid power struggles.


Peggy shares her thoughts regarding the importance of hearing children and responding to them on their level.

Jay and Laura

Jay and Laura talk about the essential role of listening in Effective Communication. They also share the best times to engage in communicating with children.

Sue and Keith

Helping children develop into responsible adults.

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