I can remember learning about affect and effect in school–and being completely confused all of the time. Is that how you feel? Well, get ready to be relieved of your affect/effect phobia!
Reflexive Pronouns: Myself, Himself, Herself, Ourselves, and Themselves (Never Theirselves…Let’s Get That Straight in the Title of This Post!)
Did you know that there is a group of pronouns called reflexive pronouns? I know, right? Not mentioned that often. I hardly remember studying them in school at all. And yet, we use them all the time—and even eloquent people use them wrong quite often. (How many interviews or speeches have you heard someone say, “Then my friend and myself….” or “He began talking to my friend and myself…” WRONG!
Sit and rise have I’s–and lie does too.
“Coz these are things that I, all by myself, can do.
Set, raise, and lay are words that you choose
When each one has an object after it to use.
- People lie; things get laid down—sort of works, but it’s not just people who lie—the sun lies on the horizon; the city lies asleep in the early morning hours; the animal lies in the middle of the road….you get the idea
- People lie; things get laid down—but it still didn’t help with the sit/set and rise/raise dilemma
- The past tense of lie (as in yesterday I lay down to take a nap…don’t I wish!) is the same as the current tense of lay (as in I am going to lay the book on the table)—poor kids!
- And so many more!
- Consider a rhyme or mnemonic like the one above to reinforce the I’s in sit, rise, and lie—when we remind students that I do those things—and they have I’s in them, we are helping them remember that these do not have objects following them.
- Do NOT start with lie. It is by far the most confusing of the trio—and I try to do that one after rise and sit (with fewer exceptions, etc.) are established in students’ minds.
- DO start with sit. Set has the same tense for all—present; past; and past participle. Today I set the table; yesterday I set the table; before that I have set the table.
- If you are teaching from a Christian standpoint, Jesus and God are prime examples of rise/rose/has risen and raise/raised/has raised:
- Jesus will rise from the grave. God will raise Jesus.
- Jesus rose from the grave. God raised Jesus.
- Jesus has risen from the grave. God has raised Jesus.
- Suggested order: sit/set; rise/raise; and lie/lay.
You know what one of my least favorite words is? FACADE.
First of all, I work week in and week out to try to teach that an A, O, U, or most consonants make the C say “kuh.” That would make this word fuh-kade, right? (Or even fay-kade.) Unfortunately, that is wrong.
It is pronounced fuh-sodd. (That A really doesn’t make the C say “kuh.”)
That clearly makes this word a FAKE, which is one of its only redeeming qualities–it means what it looks like! Smile…
That bring us to the second aspect of the word–its meaning. It is a noun that means “a face of a building or a superficial appearance.”
In that regard, it is as it is pronounced–even though it isn’t pronounced like it is spelled (which is true of many words that came from somewhere else).
So it is easy to learn the meaning of—it has to do with what it sounds like–FACE (albeit, a fake face). But it is not spelled as one would think.
So, don’t put on a facade today! Don’t try to put on a superficial front or fake face. Be yourself!
So many of my students have trouble spelling today’s day of the week! Wednesday is definitely not phonetic, so students (and adults!) get stuck on the spelling of it. Most people say Wednesday without the sound of the d at all.
How do YOU spell Wednesday. Many of my students say it just like it looks to spelll it: WED/NES/DAY!
Does that help you?