Seva is a boy I tutor in English, and he often has behavioral problems. We have a lot of "power struggles" where he tries to be in control of the lesson. "Let's leave the tv on," "Give me 5 stickers," "Let's play the new game I made up," etc. Today he had a new textbook, so there was incentive to study. We read through an alphabet poem.
Then we got to R. "R is for robot."
"Read in a robot voice," Seva commanded. For some reason I complied. He liked it so much that we read through the poem a few times (taking turns).
So it seems that all this time, all I had to do was speak in a robot voice. I should try it with my other students and see what happens.