Monday, September 18, 2006

Issues - Grammar

Okay people. I know I'm by far not the best at grammar or spelling and I'm a firm believer in spell check. What I think people have forgotten though is that "spell" check doesn't know if you used the word "know" instead of "no" incorrectly. All it knows is that it's spelled correctly. I know they know the difference - know meaning having knowledge and no meaning NO. It's usually just a typing error. The same with their, there, and they're - I hope.

On with the story - I constantly come into contact with people who, when writing/typing, seem to struggle with the difference between the words sell and sale. While this seems quite easy for me to understand, I'm sure there are people who can't figure out why it is that I can't figure out the difference between affect and effect. Even when referring to my dictionary I'm befuddled with which word to use. To me, the definitions appear to be the same but not.

Two other words I noticed are then and than. I decided I wanted to ramble about this today because I have nothing else better to do other than stalk all my blogger buds. So, here are some examples of how to use the words sell and sale, and then and than.

I would like to sell my items on eBay.
I have some items for sale on eBay if you would like to purchase them.

If you don't like my post today then I guess you will have to go read somewhere else.
First you put the sugar in the bowl, then the butter.

He is taller than Sally.
I would rather eat milk chocolate than dark chocolate.

These issues tend to develop from the differences in dialect or the differences in how we as individuals pronounce certain words. I've learned a lot about these particular issues since I've been home schooling and been teaching my son how to read, spell, and write. Why don't we spell the word away "uhway"? That's how it's pronounced? How do you teach your kid "WHY" it's spelled a-w-a-y? The standard way of teaching is by memory - write it five times and then take a test. If a child doesn't happen to be a visual learner, there is an increase in the chance that he or she may struggle. I tell you this from my own experience.

The sad part is that this struggling child may think he or she is "dumb" or have a complex about themselves when in actuality, it's not that they are incapable of learning to spell or read, it's just that they are NOT strong VISUAL learners. Me included.

One of MANY reasons why I decided to try to home school was because I was intrigued by a particular curriculum. It's from The Riggs Institute and it's called The Writing & Spelling Road to Reading & Thinking. Even if you don't home school, it would be well worth the investment in your child to work with them at home with this method.

If you have the time, please read the information at that site. You just might find it quite interesting. I know I did and still do.

Thanks for reading! :)


FruitfulSpirit said...

Very interesting subject to blog about! I get very frustrated when I a writing because words are confusing. I can only imagine what you go through in teaching your children. Sell & Sale do not confuse me, there, their and they're are very tricky. For me it is the tense of a word. I get that confused more often!

R said...

Sister, I have issues with "affect" and "effect". I also look it up all the time and still come back perplexed. I at one time was considered to be very good at grammar, but I have gotten really rusty over the years!

My husband is a technical writer and he says that from what he knows "than" and "then" are interchangeable now. I really have a hard time agreeing to that because I know the difference and have absolutely no issues with them. I also see people biff up "to" and "too".

"I went to the store."

"I want to go to the store too."

To me, what is the deal? Too comes in when you wish to stick in an also. Too also emphasizes a great amount or a little amount. "Too much", "Too little"

Aunt Jo said...

someone please explain "affect" and "effect" to me. I am too lazy to look them up. haha

My MIL is a former head of the English Department of a local college. I am forever asking for grammatical help. And she gives it gladly!

Bar Bar A said...

I admit to being lazy with typos, grammar and spelling sometimes when I am not at work because at work I have to be perfect. Not much of an excuse :)

Badoozie said...

how about accept and except. those are confusing.

my pet peeve is not necessarily the words that don't get caught by spell check, but rather when someone pastes something in from word, or from another word processor, and its fraught with all those stupid little symbols that look like greek. don't people proof-read their posts? why does this bug me so much. if i have time, i proof read about 90 times. if i go back later and see a mistake, it makes me nuts that a million people saw it and i didn't. i'm a freak. i know.

another thing. typo's on restaraunt menu's or other professional things. the newspaper for example. hello, where is the EDITOR.

lots of people mess up quiet, quite, and quit. who da thunk it

Funky-Redhead said...

mmmm...wherever did you find such a gem? Who's brilliant idea was that anyway???;)
I mean...let's give credit, where credit is do!

Anonymous said...

Very interesting. Rosie has her own unique way of learning things. I'm just here to support it! *Smile*

(I'd rather eat milk chocolate than dark chocolate too!)

Anne said...

Fruity - It IS frustrating especially considering I didn't "get it" in school.

Rachel - I have a hard time agreeing with interchanging "than" and "then" - I don't have a problem with them. I believe if they have become interchangeable "now" that THAT is a classic example of lower standards. I can't figure out what the deal is with "to" and "too" either - makes sense to me.

AuntiJ - I could try but it still won't make sense.

Barbara - I'm such a stickler about that although I do it quite frequently in my posts or comments. Sometimes I just don't have time to worry about it. Especially since it doesn't flow freely from my brain and I have to work at it.

CowChick - I'm kinda freaky about that as well. I don't have trouble with accept: please accept my apology. Except: Everyone except me got to go on the ride. I freak out over the professional publications with types and grammar errors. I'm funky about prepositions as well. Although I don't type them correctly at times because to the general public it reads wierd.

Oh, quit, quiet, and quite are pretty funny. I have to slow down when typing them. I know their different meanings and spellings but my fingers just don't work some times.

Funky-Redhead - Who are you anyway? :) I talk to you every day and see you at least a few times per week. What more do you want?

Yes, it was Funky-Redhead who introduced the Riggs stuff to me. She was homeschooling before I started. She and another friend were a lot of help to me in my decision to homeschool. Thanks Chicker! :)

Lisa - That's what's so great about homeschooling - we can cator to what type of learners our children are.

I like milk chocolate too - YUM!

uncle joe said...

yes, well...ahem..
I can help you with the two words your're having trouble with.

Afflect is the name of that terrible actor man guy who stole that one guys girlfriend and married her.
His consequences have caused a trickle down Efflect.....

Foo said...

And here I thought I was the only person left who actually gives a flip about (correct) English usage and punctuation. I guess I'm just blessed with an intuitive sense of a lot of the things that seem to give so many people problems.

The mistake that always amazes me is the its/it's problem and, more generally, the use of apostrophes to indicate possession.

However, if it makes you feel any better, I nearly always have to stop and mull over the affect/effect issue when it comes up.

Anne said...

Uncle Joe - Thanks for your help. I didn't realize you were so knowledgeable.

Foo - I usually have to stop and think about the its/it's issue. I have to remember the 's is is.

What is is?

Badoozie said...

i was on a website last night, and right at the top in plain site, was a mis-spelled word, and it was horrifying to me.

homoeopathy. it was spelled homeopahty. so the site is all about this remedy, and they mis-spelled that word on their web site design and i'm thinking, what kind of idiot puts up a site with a spelling error at the top? who designed it, and who proofed it, and what the heck is wrong with people......

here's the link, check it for yourself.

Badoozie said...

uncle joe said...

Yo Annie Poo,
My grammar was just here baking cookies in my kitchen....
I'll have her come over to your place to make some for you...

Anne said...

Badoozer - I see that all the time. Need proofreaders.

Uncle Joe - Send her on over here! (Is that proper grammar?)