You may have seen your child’s report saying that your child needs to expand on their answers.

But, how?

We have a process to help idenitfy specific blocks holding your child back, but for today’s video and blog, we will be delivering to you actionable steps to help your child expand on their answers.

This is so your child can reap the benefits, as it allows your child to:

  • Justify their answeres/opinions 
  • Give evidence
  • Critically engage in discussions
  • Understand/appreciate others’ perspectives

So what can you do?

Ask your child questions about everyday  items, so they can start thinking about their opinions. For example, what is their favourite chocolate? They might say Mars Bar. 

Then, ask them, “Why?”

They might say because they like the caramel nougat centre. 

You can then ask them, “But, why don’t you like Snickers?”

This gets them thinking about their choices and encourages them to consider why, so they start to naturally justify their answers.

If you can, engage with the set texts your child is studying.

Or, looking at specific quotes.

For example, what do you think is the writer’s attitude towards love from the following metaphor, ‘Love is a fruit’.

In one of our Strategy Sessions, we had one student say, ‘The writer likes fruit.’

Instantly, the parent wanted to correct the child. However, it is important you praise your child.

So, I said to the child, “That is a great insight, why do you think that?”

They explained because of the word “fruit”. I then asked well look at your answer again and then see how you can adjust it so it answers the question.

The child then responded, “The writer’s attitude towards love seems positive because of their use of the word “fruit”.

Much better!

But, we can expand further.


By asking, “But, why does the word “fruit” make it seem positive?”

The child then expanded on their answer, “This is because “fruit” has connotations of sweetness and is good for your health.”

Even better!

And then, we can prompt them to go further by asking, “But, doesn’t fruit go bad?”

The student then expanded even further, “However, the writer might be cautioning that “love” needs to be nurtured because if you do not water and provide nutrients for “fruit”, it rots. Therefore, the writer could be using the metaphor to warn the reader to take care of love and not take it for granted, especially because it is a positive experience.

Can you see how simple questioning helps your child to naturally expand and go deeper into analysis?