Monthly Archives: April 2014

Get Your Teenager Talking book review


I selected the book Get Your Teenager Talking because as a mom, an English teacher, and  ministry worker, I interact with teenagers regularly. I believe I will use the book as a resource for both my personal and professional use. The book begins with a short preface entitled “5 Tips to Get Your Teenager Talking”. In this brief article, Jonathan McKee reminds us that Jesus noticed people and asked questions to lead seekers to salvation. The main idea presented in the introduction and the foundation of the book is “Notice what teenagers are excited about, ask them about it, and then you won’t have to do much talking at all..our teenagers really want to be heard.” The author reminds the reader that in order to receive thoughtful answers one must pose insightful questions, not ones that will have a one-word response. The remainder of the book is a list of 180 “Conversation Springboards” covering a range of topics including sex,  food, education, work, and faith. In addition to an initial question, McKee includes follow-up questions, insight, comments, and Bible verses in some cases.  I believe these “conversation springboards” presented in McKee’s book can help to facilitate discussions with students and teens and are great to use as icebreakers, as a journal prompt, and at the dinner table. The only suggestion I have for the book is to organize the prompts by topic. The “conversation springboards” are only listed with a number, and in the Index the topics are listed, but the prompt number is given, not the page number. I feel if the “Conversation Springboards” were listed topically and the page numbers given in the index, the book would be easier to navigate. Also, some selections have Scripture verses included, but the references are not listed in the index. It would be great if all the “Conversation Springboards” had a  biblical link. However, the random order of topics may be just the thing to jump start discussion in some settings, and the author encourages parents, teachers, and others to keep the conversations flowing naturally. I recommend this book and Jonathon McKee’s website I received a free advance copy of this book from Bethany House.