Originally Posted by pyro
what should be the 1st thing you train them to do
Well, I don't think there's one thing you need to focus on, more than another. For example, if your puppy nips at you, then you can work on bite inhibition. Basically, stopping play when the pup nips, because you want them to know putting their MOUTH on you is not acceptable. They might be playing, but you are NOT a littermate. If you do get nipped, make a yelping sound and either turn away from the pup, or stop play all together. If the pup is playing, make sure to yelp if they accidentally get you during play. You want to be consistent, but also don't scold your pup for biting. That might just shy them away from playing with you. All puppies bite, so you have to work on that.
Secondly, you can train sit in just a few minutes. I train with a combination of treats and praise, and of course when they are young I would start off with more treats then praise. IMO I would train "watch me" first. Or teach your dog their name. This should be pretty simple, because most puppies are going to readily come to you when you call them. Use words like "Come" or "Come here" and reward with a treat, such as a small slice of hot dog, a liver treat, cheese crumbles, or anythign that has a strong smell to your pup. Then, try the command and don't give a treat, just a short praise.
Training sit is fairly simple. Think of a hand command, but don't use it yet. Basically, hold the treat in front of your puppies nose, slowly move it up and back towards the top of their head. They will naturally sit. As soon as their bottom touches the floor, give them a treat, but do not say anything but good dog or their name. Do this a couple more times, but the last few try saying SIT right when they sit. This teaches them that every time you say sit, it means to sit. It's probably the easiest thing to train a dog, and if youre consistent with your training, it will be fairly easy to train other commands as well.
Like I said, its not one thing over an other, but IMO I would teach them their name and to come to me, then watch me and then sit. Then you can demand that attention when teaching new commands and working with distractions. Oh... Distractions are a great thing to have because you can teach your dog to obey your commands regardless of what's going on.
Be patient, and keep sessions short and spread out. If the pup is tired of "learning" it will be harder to get them to do the commands. A puppy who is hungry usually pays more attention too. Something you might want to chew on.