Tease, Tickle, Taunt…Teach?

Apparently, not every child is eager to learn.  In fact, “making learning fun” is a billion dollar industry.  Everything from “Sesame Street” to “Leap Frog” is an attempt by this billion dollar industry to get kids interested in reading, writing, and arithmetic.

make learning fun

Over the past few years I have purchased an assortment of these “Make Learning Fun” products.  Yes, my kids really enjoyed them, but I wasn’t convinced that very much learning was actually taking place.

My daughter could watch a whole Sesame Street episode on the letter J and by the end of the show she could repeat everything but the actual letter.  It seemed that the theatrics of the shows were outshining the lessons they were intended to teach.

Then I made an amazing discovery.  Without spending a single dime, I found a tool that works for every child – every time.  It has never failed me.  I use it almost everyday, and like a charm, it captivates my children’s attention while enhancing the learning process.

Make Learning Fun!

Before I reveal this tool let me ask you a simple question, “How many times can Daddy pretend to fall down before young children (1-8 yrs. old) don’t think its funny anymore?”  That’s right – infinite.  Daddy can pretend to fall an infinite amount of times and toddlers will respond with an infinite amount of laughter.  It never gets old – its never “not funny”.

Well, the tool I discovered applies the same logic.  The tool is called “Tease-Tickle-Taunt” and I consider it the ultimate teaching tool.  Here is how it works:

Before I begin teaching or quizzing my daughter I employ the “Tease.”

Mom:  “I don’t know if we should do school today.  I think it’s too hard for you.”

Daughter:  “No it’s not.  I can do it!”

Mom:  “Well, we will see about that.  Let’s see if you can find Italy.”

Daughter:  (Proudly pointing)  “Here it is.  See, I can do it Mom.”

Mom:  “You better not get this one right or I’m going to tickle you!  It’s very hard!  Where is Japan?”

Daughter:  “Ha ha, Here it is!”

Now I employ the “Tickle”.  Kid’s loved to be tickled.  It is one of those hits that never grow old.

Mom:  “That’s it!  I am going to tickle you!”  (Tickle, Tickle)

Daughter:  (Laughing and squealing)

Then, I follow through with the “Taunt”.

Mom:  “Well, those ones were too easy.  You will never get these next ones!”

Daughter:  “Yes I will!”

That is really all there is to it.  I can continue to cycle through various versions of the “Tease-Tickle-Taunt” and I lose interest long before my children do.  That is why at my house learning time is a privilege.  I never have to nag or fuss.

The opposite is true.  My kids beg me to do school.  People are always telling me how lucky I am that my children sit still long enough to be taught.  They tell me their own children just won’t sit still and listen.

If luck is involved it is the luck that I stumbled upon this great tool.  My children are no different than anyone else’s.  Utilizing the “Tease, Tickle, Taunt” I have nearly covered the whole alphabet in the same time it takes Sesame Street to cover a single letter.  So, the next time you find yourself struggling to teach – don’t hesitate to whip out a little “Tease, Tickle, Taunt”.

Click here for more ideas to make learning fun!

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  1. says

    Janine–You are not only an excellent speaker but an excellent writer too. You have great thoughts and ideas and I wish you many blessings on this new endeavor to help others with their children’s education. Sorry that my kids are all grown.

  2. says

    Perfect reminder that it’s good to make your kids gigle during school time! Thanks for an inspiring post. My hubby is great at this stuff… I need to work at it.

    • says

      I’ll have to think that one through. I don’t have a teenager yet so it would just be theory. Thanks for your comment.

  3. says

    I’m excited to give this a try! My three year old (almost four =) always wants to learn, but usually quickly looses focus. This may be just the thing to try… “I bet you can’t write the word ‘good'” or whatever. Thanks for linking this up to Trivium Tuesdays!

    • says

      I can’t wait to hear if he likes this. All the boys in my preschool love this. They even ask me to tease them. A good phrase to use is, “There’s no way you can read this word!” Thanks for reading!

  4. says

    Some days, even tickling doesn’t work. Thanks for bringing this to mind! It’s certainly not a tool I remember to use often, and it’s good to remember the theme here: just kids!! Love it! Found you on Susan Godfrey’s Back to School link-up. :)


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