Help me interview my son!
April 11, 2008 10:46 AM   Subscribe

Looking for questions to ask my son 'through the years' (more inside).

(This is my first question, so I'll try not to muck it up too badly!)

I've got a son who will be turning two in July. I thought a great project would be to interview him (with our camcorder) every year on his birthday from the time he's speaking until he realizes his dad is thoroughly 'uncool'.

I've started this list of questions, but wanted to open it up to other ideas:

What's your favorite color?
What's your favorite food?
What's your favorite book?
What's your favorite movie?
What's your favorite place?
What do you want to be when you grow up?
What's your favorite song?
Who's your best friend?
What's your favorite memory?
Do you have a girlfriend (obviously, for maxium cuteness factor)?
What did you do today?
What do you want to do before your next birthday?
If you could live anywhere, where would you like to live?
posted by Twicketface to Human Relations (24 answers total) 69 users marked this as a favorite
you would like this
posted by Salvatorparadise at 10:48 AM on April 11, 2008 [3 favorites]

You could go for cuteness factor with questions like:

What are clouds made of?
Why is the sky blue?
What makes grass grow?
What makes food taste good?
posted by waraw at 10:56 AM on April 11, 2008

What's most surprised you in the last year (or that you can remember)?

What's your least favorite food?

What's the funniest joke you know?

What's your favorite thing to do?
posted by amtho at 11:01 AM on April 11, 2008

What is something you think about? What is your favorite recent memory? What's one thing you want to know?
posted by history is a weapon at 11:53 AM on April 11, 2008 [1 favorite]

Very sweet idea :)

What is your favourite game to play? has interesting potential for evolution through the years.

Do you have a girlfriend is great until your 2 year old is 16 and realises he's gay but can't tell you because you've been nagging him to get a girlfriend for 14 years.

That said, I'm trying to think of a way to phrase this that doesn't have the potential to land him in therapy for an equally long period of time, but that is still cute, and failing miserably.
posted by DarlingBri at 12:03 PM on April 11, 2008

Do you have any recurring dreams? (or phrase that in an age-appropriate way.)
posted by peep at 12:20 PM on April 11, 2008

What do you want to be when you grow up?
posted by kidsleepy at 12:23 PM on April 11, 2008

dang, never mind. didn;t see it in your list before.
posted by kidsleepy at 12:24 PM on April 11, 2008

"What is your earliest/first memory?"
(This won't make much sense to a two-year old, but it might get interesting as the years pass).

"What things scare you?"
posted by man on the run at 12:27 PM on April 11, 2008

Who's your favorite writer/actor/musician/athlete?

What's your favorite/least favorite subject in school?
posted by BitterOldPunk at 12:46 PM on April 11, 2008

I've always wanted to do this when I have kids of my own. I think your list is great, and I would maybe add, "Is there anything that happened this past year that you want to be able to remember when you're 16 years old?"
posted by sotalia at 2:41 PM on April 11, 2008

Do you have a girlfriend is great until your 2 year old is 16 and realises he's gay but can't tell you because you've been nagging him to get a girlfriend for 14 years.

Yeah, that was the first thing that occurred to me, too. But maybe we're being a little too PC. Maybe "Do you have a crush on anyone?" would be cute instead.
posted by arianell at 2:55 PM on April 11, 2008 [1 favorite]

What do adults not know or remember about being a kid?

If you avoid the questions about crushes, the kid will probably be much more interested in doing the video thing as time goes on...
posted by amtho at 2:58 PM on April 11, 2008 [1 favorite]

Do you have a girlfriend could be one of these noneoyabusinessdad questions. Just saying.
posted by ersatz at 3:33 PM on April 11, 2008 [1 favorite]

If you could have a super-power, what would you choose?

Riddle: What is greater than God, more evil than the Devil, the rich need it, the poor have it and if you eat it you die?

Developmental psychologist Jean Piaget developed a set of questions (that I can't seem to find right now) that reveal the stage of development in children. These would be cool.

(collaborated with JimmyJames)
posted by easy_being_green at 3:39 PM on April 11, 2008

If you want to be a cool dad, as soon as he's able, let him interview you as well.
posted by softlord at 4:40 PM on April 11, 2008 [4 favorites]

"Who are you today?" This might seem stupid on the surface but as the years go by, and your kid anticipates the question, you might see your child's mind expand right before your eyes. The cool part will be when he goes from the literal part of the question to the existential part of it. I wonder what year that will occur?
posted by bkeene12 at 8:01 PM on April 11, 2008

Have him draw a picture of the world.
posted by Wayman Tisdale at 8:09 PM on April 11, 2008

How can I help you achieve your dreams?
Where would you like to travel to someday?
Do you understand what makes people do the things they do?
What are you most proud of?
What do you want me to never forget?

Also, I would very strongly suggest viewing the Randy Pausch Achieving Your Childhood Dreams lecture since in it he reflects on the effect his youth had on his adult life, on the power of perseverance, and many other important topics.
posted by forthright at 8:23 PM on April 11, 2008

Ask something ordinary, too, like: "What did you do yesterday?" Get the details like breakfast and an art project and the friends he played with and the icky girl who gave him cooties eeewww.
posted by bassjump at 9:16 PM on April 11, 2008 [2 favorites]

If I were you, I'd ask questions that can really develop as he ages and increases his knowledge and self-awareness. Things like "Why does the universe exist?", "What do you think about God?", "Is there anything that makes you really sad?", "What makes you really happy?" etc. would be interesting to look back on.
posted by nonmerci at 9:06 AM on April 12, 2008

Also voting for axing the GF question - its cute, but then you're going to have a kid on your hands that thinks there's something wrong with him if he doesn't have one, eventually. Instead:

Who do you love very much?
Who loves you very much?

posted by allkindsoftime at 5:22 AM on April 14, 2008

Response by poster: Thanks to all for weighing in - appreciate the feedback about the girlfriend question too.
posted by Twicketface at 2:06 PM on April 14, 2008

Also, this occurred to me whilst offline - this would make an incredibly awesome surprise gift for mom, years down the road (25th anniversary, something like that) if you could pull it off without her getting wind of it...(note to self, should I ever wed and raise chillins).
posted by allkindsoftime at 2:54 AM on April 15, 2008 [1 favorite]

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