They don't find it as entertaining as I would like them to, but in trying it out for the first time today, they did a really good job. I'm going to be peppering in "Mama Says" commands throughout the day. Just a minutes worth of the game to get them used to suddenly hearing it and having to follow the command.
So far we've tried Mama says:
- Touch your nose! For when they are reaching for something I don't want them reaching for.
- Hold my hand and walk close! For obvious reasons.
- Now we stand still! (while holding my hand) Again, for obvious reasons.
- Sit on your tushy! I'm sure that will come in handy somewhere.
- Wave your hands up high! I dunno what this could be useful for, but it's fun.
- Touch your toes! Cuz why not?
As they get better at it, we'll start adding things like bring me a book or put the ball in the basket. Hopefully this will turn into a tidy-up game at the end of the day. I'm hoping this game will generally transition into just being able to tell them what to do, but in a way to make them want to do it so it's not a fight. Once I know that they understand what I'm asking of them and they are just choosing not to do something, well then we'll get into instilling proper discipline. But for right now, I want to make sure I'm teaching them what I want them to do before I expect them to be able to do it. I really don't want to discipline for things that they may not yet understand.
I really should have started this several months ago but I've had it in my head that they are so much younger than they really are. That they couldn't understand. After todays game, I really can see that they've just been waiting for me to teach them things. They are ready to learn, have been for a while. I just need to figure out how to teach.