Don’t Get Stumped: How To Win The WHY Game Every Time

By: Jelani Clay     Topics: Kids Activities

Ready to play the WHY game?

It’s the only game where a toddler is evenly matched against an adult. Man and child go head-to-head in an intense game of wordplay and will.

I. The Objective

The Toddler: Armed with only the word “Why”, the Toddler seeks to gain knowledge while also attempting to stump his opponent.
The Adult: Equipped with years of experience and knowledge, the Toddler seeks to pass wisdom down without being befuddled by a smug 3-year-old.
The Onlooker: Filled with judgmental eyes, the Onlooker changes the flow of the game and the strategy of both participants without even saying a word.

The winner is the person that is the last to offer a reply.

II. The Toddler

Toddlers usually assume one of 3 roles when playing this game:

  1. The Cute One
  2. The Annoying One
  3. The Clueless One

The Cute One – This little one is genuinely interested in understanding why something is the way it is. She loves the sound of the adult’s voice and is delighted at the new information that can be easily accessed.

The Annoying One – This one reacts to something that he shouldn’t be doing. This toddler is looking for a way to justify his actions so he asks the question while slowly slipping into the role of The Cute One.

The Clueless One – This little guy asks Why for no reason at all. He isn’t interested in the answer and he mainly just wants to hear himself speak.

III. The Adult

Just as the toddler is able to assume multiple roles, the same is true for the parent.

Those roles include:

  1. The Thoughtful Parent
  2. The Disciplinary Parent
  3. Angry Man
  4. Misc. Adult

The Thoughtful Parent – This parent never lies and tries to give the child a complete and valid answer to the Why question leaving himself open for more rounds of the Why game.

The Disciplinary Parent – This parent just caught the kid being bad. The parent tries to be sensible and gives a stern, but valid answer to the Why question. However, this parent does not permit the Why game to go on more than 1 or 2 rounds.

Angry Man – This parent wants no part of the Why game. He doesn’t even give valuable information as to the reason why. This parent probably says things like, “Because I said so” or “Shut up!” No parent plans to be Angry Man, but it can sometimes happen.

Misc. Adult – This adult is probably a babysitter or a friend of the family. He or she cares nothing for your philosophy of how to handle the Why game. This adult doesn’t even care to play often saying anything that comes to mind.

IV. The Onlookers

Unlike the two in battle, onlookers come in all age groups. The onlookers all leave the Parent at a disadvantage. Here are the most common:

  1. The Tickled Grandparent
  2. The Older Child
  3. The Advice Giving Childless Friend
  4. The Teacher
  5. The Spouse

The Tickled Grandparent – This is the Adult’s mom or dad. They remember how annoying the Adult was at that age and can’t wait to see how it’s handled. This can cause the Adult to alter his strategy while also giving the child confidence to continue his/her quest of asking Why.Holding a Why sign in the Why Game

The Older Child – This child has already been through the Why phase. This child it seeing if the game will be handled better than it was during his time as a toddler. This child is also looking for ammo that can be used against the Adult if the Adult shows any signs of favoritism.

The Advice Giving Childless Friend – This friend is probably witnessing the Why game for the first time and has all of these bright ideas how to handle it not realizing that the Adult knows what he/she is doing. This friend gives unwarranted advice freely scrutinizing the Adult for any mismanagement of information. The Adult may even be tempted to pass the game onto the Friend.

The Teacher – The teacher has a degree. The teacher is an expert. The teacher knows exactly what the Adult should do and immediately begins to criticize if the Adult is “wrong”.

The Spouse – Both are experienced Why game players. However, their strategies may be different. The onlooker Adult is looking to say, “I told you so” at any moment.

Why Game: Winnable Strategy

Let’s talk about a winnable strategy for the Adult.

Why?
Because The toddler always wins and he must be stopped.

Why?
Shut Up!!!

Sorry, Angry Man took over.

Just follow these guidelines to always win.

Winning is not just about getting the toddler to stop asking Why. Winning is about getting the toddler to stop asking Why ANNDD giving him positive answers that promote thought.

Sometimes our thoughts are all we have. It’s important that we control and direct our thoughts toward prosperous means. We would thus be creating and nurturing this habit in the toddler.

So enough with all that mumbo jumbo. Let’s get into the Winnable Strategy.

A. Always have an answer
B. Don’t Lie
C. Be Positive
D. If you don’t know the answer, say so but suggest that you research the answer together.

Got a funny Why Game story, tell it to us in the comments.

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