Skip to main content

Thoughts on Spelling and Standardisation.

I'm watching a Drive Thru History video on Noah Webster. I've always found it readily apparent that when Americans way back when discussed things like Politicks and Historie, they could spell it any which way they wanted and no-one thought the worse of them. Today, however, thanks to the standardization of spelling, you can't write things however you want and expect People to think that you are well-educated.

Actually, it bothers me. It has for some time. Catherine asked me a while back why I sometimes write words like "labour, colour" and other words with obviously English spelling. Yet I don't write "gaol," nor yet "programme and centre" as the spelling of choice with these words. Part of the time it's because I like the English spelling of some words better than others. Part of the time it's because I like the American spelling of some words better than others. Part of the time it's because I've thought a fair bit on this issue and think that life oughtn't be dictated by the AP Stylebook or the MLA methods of documentation or what-have-you. And who died and made these folks God? Yes, I had a reasonably high GPA at an expensive liberal arts college, yet I deliberately "misspell" words.

I don't find myself to be a conspiracy theorist, but I do wonder why we all of us seem to be colluding together on the spelling issue. Were I an employer reviewing a business application with very poor spelling, I'm sure it would colour my judgement. Isn't that wrong of me? And yet, it could be a real spelling Maverrick who has carefully crafted his resume to reflect that he would be a Value-able member of our creative business community.

Do you home-schoolers, home schoolers or homeschoolers teach your children spelling? I do. Elf commonly writes things like "dozz" for "does" in his free writing, and yet Emperor usually instinctively correctly spells words like "trachea." Elf is a creative and innovative writer when he wishes, and I wouldn't want his spelling to hold others back from taking him seriously.


  1. Fascinating post!

    I have long--when not writing for something that needs to be "proper"--written "eachother" and refused to write "cannot".

    However, I would like to give a different perspective on the idea that "you can't write things however you want and expect People to think that you are well-educated." The internet is full of educated people who now use web short-hand. Perhaps it is the IM/gaming/texting generation, but ppl r hppy 2 type like this, kwim?

    Can anyone say, "lolcats"? Many of those jokes require a solid education to understand.

    Just some rambling thoughts.



Post a Comment

Non-troll comments always welcome! :)

Popular posts from this blog

Reading Curriculum: ABeka Book and BJU Press

Did you know that in the state of Missouri, homeschoolers must teach reading as a separate subject?  I don't know how anyone could homeschool well without teaching their child to read... but OK. 

I got many of my ABeka books used and collected them over time.  I'm glad I came across these readers early in my homeschooling years.  It teaches children to read step-by-step.  I don't think I've seen a more effective reading program for the elementary years.  The children love the stories, and what I appreciate about them is that there is a rich and varied language even in simple-to-read books in this series. 

My set is pretty old, and some are even from the 1960's and no longer listed in the reading series.  I think if I had to do things over again somehow, I think I'd just spend on a curriculum set and be done with it.  That's the thing, though, with homeschooling.  By the time you figure out what the perfect curriculum is for you, your children have graduate…

Homeschooling is NOT So Hard.

I wish I'd have known this starting out. I wish I'd have known that it's actually LESS work to just homeschool your child, than to be an "involved parent" at school.

We've enjoyed elementary school with our older boys. *Most* of the teachers were actually pretty competent and caring (the others, I save for another blog post, another day...). We had the children involved in extra activities like the Spanish Club or Service Club, or choir, and they got a fair bit out of the experience.

But it's a LOT of work.

You get about a ton of worksheets that must be done by a certain time. Usually on a day when you're sick or have no time. You get the phone calls about this or that, and about a zillion sheets per day that sometimes contain important news, so you MUST go through them daily. The schools also *love* to throw in half days, teacher in-service days and early dismissals. Not so bad, unless you have children at more than one school and the schedu…

Holiday Gifts for the Homeschool Teacher!

Merrymaking hint:  leave this post up on your phone/ computer for your family to "accidentally" find!  Let the magic begin!

 All teachers love a little appreciation every now and then, including homeschoolers.   I don't know about you, though, but I don't want any apple crap.  So first rule:  no apple crap! 

Otherwise I'm pretty open.  I love getting gifts, even if it's just something small or simple.  One thing I love is when my children want to help out and make lunch or clean up or put their laundry away.  Or just behave themselves and get their math done.  This is a really big thing when you think about it.  

And from the adults in my life, the gift of coffee always shows love - or rather, someone not wanting an "I need coffee" emergency in the middle of winter after a big snowstorm.  Somehow, I always have a lot of coffee in my pantry during the winter months.  (Guess why.) Thanks, D! 

My gallery of homeschool appreciation pics: