You know...we really do say "please" and "thank you" around here a lot, and yet my extremely verbal 23mo only uses them sometimes.
: I'm glad it's working for all of you, but I'm not convinced modeling is always enough. My DD is not much of an empathetic or sympathetic kid. She's an investigator, not a people-pleaser--I hope that doesn't sound negative, but that's just her.
So, yes, I sometimes do ask DD to ask me again "nicely." She understands what that means--modulate her voice and add a "please." I also have encouraged her to say thank you to another by saying, for instance, "Wow, Grandma, thank you for the neat book! DD, can you thank grandma?" If she does, she does; if she doesn't, we don't push it, but I still do ask. I KNOW this drives some GD people crazy, as evident here, but honestly, I do want people to understand that even though DD doesn't always use good "manners," we are working on it. Let's face it--manners are important, and people are annoyed by people who don't use these social words. Is it a huge deal to my DD to be reminded to say please? Ennh. I do think it is part of my job to teach DD social graces, even if empirically I don't myself consider them The End-all Be-all. I would also teach her, for instance, not to spit or put her hands down her pants in public, not because those things are so terribly evil, but because not doing them is part of learning to function in society.
People get a bee in their bonnets about this issue, I've noticed. I think it's hardly one of the worst GD offenses.