G has recently started saying, “Duh!” with the exact right inflection. (thank you, typical sassy second graders) I know it’s exactly right because it sends my blood pressure through the roof each and every time. Unfortunately, his application is all wrong – he throws it randomly at the end of any response.
One example occurred today when G walked out of the kitchen chewing on something. Snacktime was over and dinner was not far off, so I asked him what he was eating. He replied, “A cracker – DUH!” Instead of blowing my top at the attitude, I was more concerned that he didn’t understand what he was saying and that his classmates would make fun of him. We ended up having a conversation about how my question was not obvious because he had no food in his hand to clue me into what he was eating. If he had walked into the room holding an apple with a big bite taken out of it and I asked what he was eating, then he could correctly say, “An apple, DUH,” because I asked a question to which there was a very obvious answer.
G listened intently and asked some very relevant questions. We role played a couple of examples of when to say duh and when to simply answer the question. As he went off to get his hands washed for dinner, I looked over to see DH silently laughing. He pulled it together long enough to say, “I cannot believe you just taught him how to sass you!”
Sometimes, the goal of acquiring age appropriate social skills isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.