Art & Design
Create: In whatever medium you like or with whatever materials you have, create art or items with practical utility for your father. Consider making it a main activity of the day with them, if it interests them.
Decorate: With your breakfast in bed or nice family dinner that you prepare for your dad, decorate a note or the table to accompany it.
Construct: Has Dad been excited to build something or do some home improvement? Help him out!
Careers & Life Callings
- How many jobs have you had?
- Which was your favorite and why?
- What was one of the hardest parts of being in the workforce?
- Who was one of your biggest mentors?
- Do you have any job advice for me when I start working?
- When were you born?
- Were you an obedient or misbehaving child?
- What was school like for you as a child? What were your best and worst subjects?
- What were you good at in school? Did you have a favorite subject?
- Did you study for exams long before they happened or cram the night before?
- What were you like during school? (Class clown, shy, etc)
- Extracurricular Activities & Interests
- What was your favorite thing to do for fun (movies, beach, etc.)?
- What was your favorite television show as a child?
- Did you play – or want to play – any specific musical instrument?
- What sports did you like to play?
- What games did you like to play?
- Did you participate in any other extracurricular activities like theater, debate, church youth group, etc?
- Family Life
- Did you have pets?
- What were your pet’s names?
- What was your bedtime as a child?
- Did you ever break curfew or sneak out of the house?
- Did your family go on many vacations together?
- What was your best family vacation?
- Who was your favorite travel companion? Why?
- Social Life
- Who were your friends when you were growing up?
- How did you meet your best friend growing up?
- What did you and your best friend love to do together?
- Was there a certain place you and your friends liked to hang out?
- What’s one of your favorite memories with a friend?
- Do you remember any fads from your youth? Popular hairstyles? Clothing?
- What were the most popular clothes in school?
- What were the most popular toys or gadgets?
- What was the first movie you saw in a theater?
- Tell me about your favorite book.
- What’s the best gift you’ve ever received? Given?
- What is your favorite hobby?
- What is your favorite movie?
- Who are your favorite actors and actresses?
- Other favorites: Meal? Dessert? Drink? Color? Flower? Singer? Radio show?
- What is one of your biggest accomplishments in your life?
- What are you most proud of?
- Who is the person who influenced your life the most?
- What are some of your favorite holiday memories?
- What items are on your bucket list?
- What are the most important lessons you’ve learned in life?
- Did you go to college or receive any training after high school? If so, where and what was your favorite part?
- What was your first job?
- What’s one of the hardest things you’ve had to overcome?
- What are your brother’s or sister’s full names?
- What are your parents’ full names?
- What were your parents’ careers?
- What was the make, model, and color of your family car growing up?
- How did you meet your spouse?
- What year was it?
- What qualities do you remember liking about them?
- What was your first date?
- When and where did you get married?
- How did you propose?
- What was your wedding like?
Play: What are your dad’s favorite outdoor activities or sports? Is it golf, fishing, playing catch at the park, hiking, visiting a historic site, or bowling? Plan the afternoon doing it as a family.
Watch: Have a family movie night and let Dad choose the movie.
Life & Home Skills
Cook: They say that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. Cook or prepare a meal or a dessert for your father. Either wake up early and delivering his breakfast in bed or work with siblings or mom to prepare family dinner or barbecue or picnic in the park.
Prepare: Bake one of your dad’s favorite treats for him.
Experience: Go out to an orchard or farm. Pick apples, strawberries, or whatever can be picked together in your area.
Children & Teenagers
Ask: Learn more about the world through the eyes of your father or grandfather:
- Where were you born? Could you show me on a map?
- Which countries have you traveled to?
- Where is your favorite place you’ve visited? Why?
- Do you have a favorite memory from traveling?
- Do you have a scary memory from traveling?
- What was the most interesting or unique food or dish you had while traveling?
- If you could visit any place you’ve already traveled again, where would it be? Why?
- Where was the longest trip you’ve been on? How long did you travel for? What was the occasion?
Children & Teenagers
Ask: Learn more about history from your father or grandfather’s experiences:
- What major historical events have happened during your life?
- What world events had the most impact on you?
Volunteering & Service
- Have you/do you participate in any community service? If so, what organizations did/do you volunteer with?
- What drew you to these organizations?
- How long have you/did you volunteer with them?
- What was/is your role in these organizations?
- What is a favorite experience you’ve had with them?
- What do you think you got out of these experiences?
- How has volunteering made you feel?
- Has it changed your outlook on your community?
- How do you think your organization has impacted your community?
- Are there any organizations you’d like to volunteer or get involved with now?
- How did your experience in the military mold you as a person?
- Did you ever serve in the military? If so, what branch?
- What years did you serve? Where did you serve? What wars were you involved in?
- What was your rank (if applicable)?
- What type of work did you perform?
- Why did you decide to enlist or were you drafted?
- Did you see combat? What was that like?
- Were you injured while on duty? How did it happen?
- What did you do for entertainment?
- Did you keep a diary/keep in touch with your family? Do you still have it?
- Did you make any close friendships while in service? Can you tell me about one?
How else might important subject matter be learned from this interest topic? Comment below! Half-baked ideas are more than welcome, too.