Spelling Bee Challenge

The Munchkin, like all toddlers, has selective hearing. However, her hearing seems to be extremely good whenever certain words come up. Words like “dessert” or “cookie” or “Sesame Street” or “Veggie Tales” or “Pocky”. In an effort to not get her all worked up every time one of these words or phrases comes up in conversation, the Webmaster and I have taken to spelling words out when we speak in front of her. For example, last evening, after dinner (and remember, this entire conversation is taking place in front of the Munchkin):

Webmaster: She’s asking for V-T (Veggie Tales). Is that okay?
Me: She watched S-e-s-a-m-e S-t-r-e-e-t this morning and L-i-l-o after her nap. I don’t think I really want her to watch anything more.
Webmaster: Maybe I should take the kids o-u-t-s-i-d-e?
Me: That’s fine with me if you want to do that, but it’s getting late. So if you’re going to play o-u-t-s-i-d-e, you’d better go now.
Webmaster: Munchkin, do you want to go play outside with Daddy?
Munchkin: Oh, yeah, Daddy! I get my shoes on!

This does mean, however, that the Webmaster and I have to remember how to spell certain words quickly, like “ice cream” and “popsicle”, which can prove to be tongue-twisters when you’re trying to incorporate them into everyday conversation. It’s a small price to pay to keep the Munchkin in the dark. If you want to see her start going crazy, just mention the word “treat” to her. She will latch onto it like a racoon holding tinfoil and will not let up until some kind of treat is produced. We’ve apparently created some kind of Pavlovian effect with her and that word. Spelling words out loud has proved to be an able defense against her amazing hearing and comprehension skills.

Of course, the effect it has on other people is interesting. For example, I was having a conversation with my mother over the phone a couple of weeks ago, and we were discussing potty training (what else?). I mentioned that the Munchkin had asked to use the potty, but then didn’t, but still demanded a t-r-e-a-t.

“Oh,” my mom said. “She really wanted her P-o-c-k-y, didn’t she?”

“Umm, Mom, why are you spelling that out? She can’t hear you,” I pointed out.

“I was in the moment,” my mother replied.

One Response to “Spelling Bee Challenge”

  1. DozeyMagz
    June 30th, 2006 12:17

    I’ve tried to re-define the meaning of the word t-r-e-a-t, to mean something healthy, but so far it hasn’t worked!