Guest Author - Bonnie Sayers
I purchased the Look Mom! I Have Good Manners DVD through Different Roads to Learning for my son Nicholas to view and gain insights into proper etiquette. The price is $14.95 for the 30 minute DVD that has the gold seal, best video award from Openheim Toy Portfolio. The recommended age begins at five.
My son is high functioning on the autism spectrum at twelve years of age. He did benefit from viewing this silly production that breaks down manners into five categories - mealtime, playtime, telephone, school and healthy manners. The children portrayed in the DVD were nine and older.
The format is similar to a game show with a host, background clapping and chatter. There are a few breaks in between the segments that showcase key words like respect. Look Mom! I Have Good Manners has scenarios for each category with five points awarded for each correct answer. There are multiple choice answers to choose from in this interactive DVD that promotes learning in a pleasing way.
There were six questions with one bonus question in the mealtime manners segment. These covered where to place a napkin when eating, is it proper to talk and chew at the same time, place settings, passing potatoes on the table, elbows on the table and how to handle mysterious food.
Nicholas got two questions wrong in the mealtime manners section. The place setting was a hard one to get since the knife was positioned the wrong way. They did not really expand on why there were two forks. This was a question Nicholas asked and he inquired what a table setting has to do with manners. Since Nicholas is left-handed I have never been sure if there is another option for table setting. This was not addressed in the DVD.
The other question also seemed to be a trick one as it covered whether you can ever put your elbows on the table. Surprisingly the correct response was yes, as long as everyone is done eating you can rest your elbows on the table.
The scenario for mysterious food focused on what you would do if having dinner at a friend’s house and the food being served you have never seen or tasted before.
The Playtime manners segments consisted of seven questions as well. The one question Nicholas got wrong here was on special toys and if you can put them away so a friend coming over does not play with it. The host explained that you do not have to share all your toys with everyone and can keep some to yourself. The one that stumped me had to do with a friend being the one to choose the toys to play with when coming over to your house. The role-playing included showing boys playing basketball and the proper way to behave and be a team player. The first segment showed the correct way to wait your turn to use a slide at the park.
There were only four telephone manners segments, which was a shame since this is the area that Nicholas could use some practice and role playing guidance on. These consisted of tell or yell when calling someone to the phone, how to answer the phone, what to do when a wrong number comes through and how to take a message. Nicholas got them all correct. The one issue I had with the telephone scenarios had to do with stating you get up and leave the room to tell the person in another room that there is a phone call, yet they did not say what you do with the phone. The segment showed the girl with a cordless phone but did not follow through with an example of what she did with the phone.
Healthy manners contained four questions that covered picking your nose, body picking, dip and chip plus sneezing and covering your mouth. The picking your nose example was quite gross. Nicholas picked the right answers for each of these as well. The host explained that you pick your nose in private and did not mention using a tissue.
School manners consisted of four questions that covered how to answer a question, take a note to the office, not to draw on your desk if you have no paper and how to borrow a pencil from a classmate. These were all answered correctly by my son.
The last segment was a speed round with four questions. They included holding the door open for classmates and discussed doing this for both those that enter and exit the room. The next one was on meeting new people, slurping soup and the correct way to enter an elevator when people are exiting.
If the total points of the viewer were between 0-50 it was suggested that they view the DVD over several more times. For those that received anywhere from 51-100 points they are civilized and on their way to good manners. If anyone gets over 100 points they can honestly say, Look Mom! I Have Good Manners. My son scored 110 points so he repeated that phrase to me at the end.
Nicholas stated the following - the DVD was silly, funny and sort of entertaining. I learned that with good manners you can have a healthy life and lots of friends.
This is also available through amazon at a cheaper price, but the timeline listed states 6-9 days to deliver. This is a useful tool to use in social skills groups and for preparing a child before holiday get-togethers or summer vacations where you will be staying elsewhere.
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