(NBC News) -- With the new school year well underway across the country parents are challenged with getting their children back in learning mode after another summer of just having fun.
The Strand family of South Dakota are the exception rather than the rule. Their children are actually excited about going back to school, but not for the reason you're probably thinking.
"We kept our kids busy all summer with chores, and they were pretty happy to go back to school again," Mary Strand says.
The more common response parents receive is consistent with what experts call "back-to-school blues."
"The fun is over," says storyteller and author John Livesay. "You have to do homework and not just play all summer."
Livesay is touting the idea that getting your child engaged with education again can start with daily questions that require more than one-word answers.
"The good thing there is they start to learn how to tell good stories, and that skill set will help them in life no matter what they are doing," he says.
He suggests asking questions such as:
"What made you smile today?"
"Who did you sit with at lunch?"
"What was the hardest thing you had to do today?"
"Can you show me something you learned today?"
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