Tag Archives: words

52 Weeks of Talking To Our Kids: When You Have a Good Report

52 Weeks of Talking to Our Kids When You Have a Good Report

“Jonathan, come in here.”

Daddy was home and was calling his fifth child, six year old Jonathan, into his room.

But Jonathan wasn’t concerned. He didn’t think he was about to get into trouble. He didn’t worry that he had done something wrong.

He knew what Daddy wanted: to praise, affirm, and encourage him. Jonathan knew that he was about to hear the words that all of our kids waited to hear in the evenings:

“I heard a good report about you!”

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A is for AFFIRMATION

A is for AFFIRMATION!

I LOVE TO WATCH YOU…


Article from blog:

Affirmation. Words of encouragement. Words of praise. Words of confirmation. Words of affection. Words of pride. Words of belonging. These all describe that one word–affirmation.

I recently read an article about a study of hundreds of college athletes that lasted over three decades. In this article,  “What Makes a Nightmare Sports Parent and What Makes a Great One.” these college athletes described two things that are poignant for parents of all children, including non-athletes.

The first question they answered was “What is your worst memory from playing youth and high school sports?”

The majority of those surveyed said, “The ride home from games with my parents.”

(If you have read much of what we have written or heard us speak often, you know that we focus on riding with our children in the van or car as one of the key opportunities to teach, affirm, talk, love, and train. It breaks my heart that this “sacred time” is remembered as one of the most dreadful times for these hundreds of athletes.)

Of course, we can all imagine why–because there probably isn’t a parent reading this (author included) who hasn’t come down on a child on the drive home from something about his performance–teacher conferences, speech contest, debate tournament, soccer game, swim meet, even pick-up basketball games are all opportunities to “teach” our child what he did “wrong” in the aforementioned event. 

My husband, who is truly the best dad I know, one who talks to his kids on the phone and in person quite literally hours every day, even does this, so I know it is hard to conquer. And it isn’t always the parent’s fault either–as I know our kids usually probe on the way home from a performance, sermon, or song. They ask us questions that make us feel like we should be “teaching” at that time. 

However, we really need to resist the urge to teach at that time. My experience has been that they ask and ask, but they really don’t want a lesson. They really just want to hear the positive at that time. I have to remind myself that there will be time for teaching and lessons later–when the performance, sermon, or song isn’t so fresh.



The study went on to prove this point further by telling how the kids described their joy over grandparents attending their sporting events. It seems that grandparents are more likely to watch, cheer, and then praise–with no lessons or strings attached. 



Turning from the negative and what not-to-do, to the positive, these same athletes were asked what their parents did right–what made them feel good about themselves and their performances. The majority of them said that they were filled with joy when their parents simply said six little words:

 “I love to watch you play.”

No lessons, lectures, or analyses. Just six simple words that made hundreds of college and professional athletes look back on their time following sporting events with their parents fondly.

And six little words that we can use to affirm our children all the time. 

I was happy to read this article because one of my favorite buzz lines after my kids perform is 

I could watch you _________________ forever. 

I could watch you dance forever. I could watch you sing forever. I could watch you preach forever. I could watch you teach forever. I could watch you act forever. I could watch you direct forever. I could watch you lead forever. I could watch you play forever. I could watch you study forever. 

The thing about these lines—I love to watch you…. or I could watch you ….. forever—is that our child doesn’t have to be the best to say these things. He doesn’t have to have just played a perfect game. He doesn’t have to have just scored the winning run. He doesn’t have to have given a flawless performance. 



He is our child. We love to watch him grow, do, be, become. We are saying that the child is so amazing to us–without being the gold medal winner. We are saying that he is important. That we want to be with him. That we love to watch him do what he loves to do.

We are affirming. With six little words.

I love to watch you….



 


Link for original article:
http://characterinkblog.com/i-love-to-watch-you/

A is for AFFIRMATION!

WORDY WEDNESDAY–Prefix ir

The prefix ir is an interesting prefix for a number of reasons:

1. It means not. There are many prefixes that can mean not, such as de, a, un, non; however, ir also means not, which is interesting to me because I don’t think it sounds like it should mean not! To me, it sounds like it should mean again or repeating or something besides not!

2. It only comes before base words that begin with R. In other words, you do not put ir in front of most any word to mean not, like you often do with un or non. 

3. This isn’t really interesting–but I like to say it whenever I teach about prefixes. A prefix is a letter or group of letters that you “affix” (which is why it and suffixes are called affixes) to the beginning of a word. It is important to remember that a prefix does not change the spelling of the base word. That is especially crucial in spelling ir words because the ir precedes an R already–and you must keep the base word’s spelling, so when you add this prefix to a word, you will ALWAYS have two R’s in a row: irregular, irresponsible, etc.

4. It is most often put before a word that is should never come before: regardless. We hear people constantly say irregardless, which is, of course, an oxymoronic word because less means without (or not) and ir means not. I guess that makes it sort of like using a double negative! You do not put ir before regardless because regardless already means without regard. With ir in front of it, you are saying not without regard, I guess…. Anyway, irregardless is not a word. So don’t use it. Okay? 🙂

Note: It is correct, however, to use irrespective, which is a substitute (some of the time) for when you are tempted to say irregardless.

However, there are many base words that begin with R that can have ir put before them to mean NOT or the opposite of what the base word means before ir is added to it.

Here is a list to get you started. Notice how if you take the ir off, you have a positive base word (or one that means yes–yes regular, yes responsible, yes revocable, etc.) However, with the ir, the word means notnot regular, not responsible, not revocable, etc.

Remember: You know more than you think you know!

And remember: Use what you already know to learn even more!

  • irregular
  •  irresponsible
  • irrevocable
  • irrefutable
  • irradiate
  • irreconcilable
  • irredeemable
  • irreducible
  • irrefutable
  • irregularity
  • irrelevant
  • irreverence
  • irreligious
  • irreparable
  • irreplaceable
  • irreversible
  • irresolute
  • irretrievable
  • irresistible
  • Irrelevant
  • WORDY WEDNESDAY–Prefixes Having to Do With Heat

    We are having a heat wave here in Indiana. We have had temperatures above ninety degrees this week. Today it was 92 degrees–a perfect day to go swimming and a perfect day to get a sunburn!

    For today’s WORDY WEDNESDAY, I thought we would look at two prefixes that have to do with July in Indiana–SOL and THERM.

    If you have been reading Language Lady very long, you know my two rules of thumb for learning:

    1. You know more than you think you know.

    2. Use what you already know to learn even more!

    Those two rules of thumb definitely apply to today’s prefixes.+

    We encourage our students to take a key word–any word that you already know–that has to do what you are trying to learn.

    In the case of sol and therm, you can take two words you already know as your “key words” to help you remember these two prefixes:

    SOL–solar….you know that solar means sun if you have ever talked about a solar blanket for your pool, solar power (generating power through the sun), or solar eclipse

    THERM–thermos or thermal…you know that THERM means heat if you have ever carried your soup or coffee in a thermos or had “thermal underwear” on in the winter to keep you warm.

    So…take your two KEY WORDS and use them any time you see the prefixes SOL and THERM:

    1. Sol
    a. solar
    b. solarium–part of a room that is exposed to the sun
    c. solstice–the pointer in which the sun stands sill

    2. Therm
    a. thermoplastic
    b. thermos
    c. thermodynamics
    d. thermoelectric

    The “solar heat” is high right now in Indiana, and the thermometer shows it at in the low nineties!

    +Remember: A prefix is an affix. An affix is a letter or letters attached to a word that give more meaning to the word. The affix itself actually has meaning. A prefix is an affix that is added to the beginning of a word–thus, the prefix to the word prefix PRE (meaning before)!

    WORDY WEDNESDAY: peak, peek, pique

    Picture by Lisa Rivera

    Oh my word! My tips and tricks for peek, peak, and pique aren’t nearly as cute and memorable as the ones Lisa Rivera has created in the picture above! In our curriculum materials, and on the web, I don’t have access to that kind of graphic representation of words. I might have to look into that in the future!

    In the meantime, her picture says a thousand words–okay, well really just three:

    1. Peek
        a. Verb meaning a secretive look–And then I am going to peek into the package.
        b. Noun meaning a small glance–She took a peek into the package.
        c. Thus, the two EYES in the middle of the word peek in the graphic. (We do have that in our books, but we just tell it not show it–showing it is so much better!)

    2. Peak
       a. Verb meaning to reach the highest point—They said that the dancer was going to peak at just the right time.
       b. Noun meaning the highest point—They reached the mountain’s peak.
       c. Adjective meaning highest point—They were at their peak performance.
       d. Love the graphic with the A being a high, mountainous point. 

    3. Pique’
       a. Verb meaning to arouse curiosity–They really tried to pique’ our attention with those pictures.
       b. Noun meaning resentment–He slammed the door in a fit of pique’. (Use it interchangeably with “quick anger.”
       c. Noun or adjective meaning nubby fabric–He wore his pique’ bright yellow polo shirt.
       d. The verb is the most common meaning; and thus, we see the cat at the bottom of the q in the picture because “curiosity killed the cat.” CLEVER!

    If you don’t have that great picture above, here are ways to remember these three:

    1. Peek–has two e’s, and we have two eyes and peek with our eyes
    2. Peak—not two e’s OR They have a lEAK in the pEAK of their roof.
    3. Pique’–Ends with que—question begins with que

    Happy Wordy Wednesday! If you like our blog, share it with others! Put the FB link on your timeline, so others can learn with Language Lady each week! Smile…

    WORDY WEDNESDAY: Write, Right, Rite, and Wright

    In my complete language arts books, I have a weekly lesson called “Wacky Words.” When I began writing language arts books for a different publisher fourteen years ago, I did not have this section in my books. 

    Then I began testing…and testing…and testing…my materials. As I tested them, I discovered that even mature writers have difficulties with homophones (words that sound the same but are spelled differently and have different meanings). Then along came message boards, email groups, and FaceBook, and I discovered EVERYBODY has trouble with homophones. From these experiences, the Wacky Word lessons were born.

    This week I was thinking of the plays that our daughter is directing for a community youth program called The Young Playwrights. I have seen the word playwrights before, but this week, it struck me that we do not have that word in our Wacky Word lessons with write, right, and rite.

    Then, of course, I thought more (thinking is what I do!) and wondered why, if the children are writing plays, the term is not playwrite. So…that takes us to this Wordy Wednesday/Wacky Word post!

    The picture above gives us some idea of why the word is playwright and not playwrite. The picture is of a wheelwright shop–that is, a shop in which one crafts wheels.

    Though the word “wright” is most commonly associated with crafting with wood (wheelwright), the word “wright” is used in other contexts to indicate crafting or creating as well:

    playwright
    wheelwright
    shipwright
    millwright
    wainwright

    In that way, a playwright is not simply “writing” a play, but he or she is “crafting” something–perhaps he or she is even meticulously creating the script, like a wheelwright meticulously creates wheels.

    So our four “Wacky Words” for “Wordy Wednesday” can be remembered with the following tips:

    1. Write–to pen or scribe the written word

    2. Right–correct; opposite of wrong; from the fight, might, light family, phonetically speaking

    3. Rite–a ritual or ceremony; a rite of passage (This makes the Rite-Aid stores all spelled wrong–unless they mean “aid” for a ceremony or passage, which I don’t think they mean. I think they want to say that their stores give the “right” kind of aid/assistance.)

    4. Wright–a crafter, especially of wooden creations    

     

    WORDY WEDNESDAY: Prefixes, Suffixes, Roots, Oh My!

     When Joshua and I teach vocabulary, we try to do a few things:

    1. Relate the word to anything we think the students might already know. (“Aquaduct? Well, you know what aquatic means, don’t you?”)

    Of course, this is where we say, “You know more than you think you know!”

    2. We ask the students if they can tell us anything about the word based on the context. Is it happy or sad? Is there a word near that word that helps you?

    3. We help them examine the type of word it is. We say over and over to them that OUS words are often adjectives (delicious) and ATE words can often be verbs.

    4. We help the students examine roots and affixes.
        a. Prefix–an affix (“stuck on”) to the beginning of a word
        b. Suffix–affix added to the end of a word

    We also give the students tools all the time. Below is a list of prefixes and suffixes that we give to our students and discuss with them, along with their meanings.

    Be a lifelong student! If you are an adult, these vocabulary tips will still help you every day.

    (a)   GEN–birth, race, kind

    generous, generate, generation, geneology, gender

    (b)   DIC, DICT, DIT–tell, say, word

    dictate, verdict, edict, contradict, predict, diction, indict

    (c)    SPEC, SPIC, SPIT–look, see

    perspective, aspect, spectator, spectacle, suspect   
            

    (d)   SUPER, SUR, SUM—above

    surpass, summit, supersede, superstition

    (e)   TENT, TENS, TEND, TENU–stretch, thin

    tension, extend, tendency, tendon, tent, distend

    (f)     TRANS—across

    transfer, transient, transitory, transgress, transport

    (g)   DOC, DUC, DAC–teach, lead

    conduct, document, doctrine, induce, indoctrinate

    (h)   CO, CON, COM-with, together

    company, collaborate, comply, congruent,

    (i)     VERS, VERT—turn

    convert, revert, subvert, divert, diverse, extrovert, versatile

    (j)     LOC, LOG, LOQU–word, speech

    eloquent, logic, apology, monologue, dialogue, prologue

    (k)   SEN–feel, sense

    sensitive, sensation, consent, dissent, assent, sentiment        
                                             

    (l)     DE–away, down, off

    denounce, defraud, decry, deplete, devoid, defile

    (m) NOM, NOUN, NOWN, NAM, NYM–name, order, rule

    anonymous, nominate, renounce, renown, misnomer         
                       

    (n)   CLA, CLO, CLU–shut, close

    closet, enclose, disclose, include, conclude, seclude

    (o)   VO, VOC, VOK, VOW—call

    vocal, advocate, vocation, convoke, revoke, avow         
                            

    (p)   MAL–bad

    malicious, malady, dismal, malign, malevolent

    (q)   FRA, FRAC, FRAG—break

    fracture, fraction, fragment, fragile, frail, fractious          
                            

    (r)    OB—against

    objective, obsolete, obscure, obstruct, obstinate

    (s)    SUB—under

    submissive, subordinate, sublime, subtle, subversion       
                         

    (t)     AB–from, away 

    abandon, abhor, abstain, absolve, abstruse, abstract 

    (u)   GRESS, GRAD—step

    progress, regress, gradual, digress, degrade, transgress

    (v)   SEC, SEQU—follow

    second, sequel, sequence, consequence, prosecute

    (w)  PRO–much, for, a lot

    prolific, profuse, prodigal, prtracted, prodigy, propensity     
                       

    (x)   QUE, QUIS–ask, seek

    inquire, question, request, quest, query, acquire, querulous 

    (y)   SACR, SANCT, SECR—sacred

    sacrifice, sanctuary, sanctify, sanction, consecrate

    (z)    SCRIB, SCRIP—write

    scribble, describe, script, prescribe, ascribe, inscribe 

    (aa)  PATHY, PAS, PAT—feeling

    apathy, sympathy, empathy, antipathy, passionate

    (bb)  DIS, DIF—not

    disdain, dissuade, dismay, disparate, disparage

    (cc) CIRCU—around

    circumference, circulation, circumstances, circumvent 

    (dd) NON, UN, IN, AN, A–no or not

    nonviolent, uncooperative, inappreciative, anonymous 

    (ee) AD–to       

    adhere, adjective, addict, adverb                       

    (ff)  INFRA—below

    infrastructure, infraction, infrared, infra-bass
      
      

    Spring Is Here: Baby Animal Names

    Spring is in the air, and we have chicks in our shed! (I almost wrote “baby chicks,” which would be a little redundant since chicks are babies!) Anyway, here are some “domestic” animal parent and baby names for you (well, somewhat domestic…animals you might see around the farm/near a farm home) to get you into the spring baby animal mode!

    donkey–colt, foal
    mallard—duckling
    turkey–poult
    sheep–lambkin, lamb
    turtle–hatchling
    skunk–kit
    toad–tadpole
    dog–pup
    frog–tadpole, polliwog, froglet
    squirrel–pup, kit, kitten
    fox–kit, cub, pup
    goose–gosling
    goat–kid, billy
    bison/buffalo–calf
    cat–kitten
    guinea pig–pup
    deer–fawn
    coyote–pup, whelp
    hamster–pup
    hare–leveret
    rabbit–kitten, bunny, kit
    hog–shoat, farrow
    rat–pup, kitten
    horse—foal, colt
    rabbit–kitten, bunny, kit
    mule–foal
    cattle–calf
    duck–duckling

    WORDY WEDNESDAY: Capitol vs. Capital

    The Only use for the word capitOl with an O is when referring to the capitOl building/buildings!        


    Yep, you read that caption correctly! Contrary to what many people believe, capitOl does not refer to the head city, a good idea, or money invested. CapitOl Only refers to the capitOl building.

    Here is the rundown:

    1. Capitol
        a. Only has one use that we widely implement.
        b. Means the building or group of buildings in which the functions of government are carried out.
        c. Think. CapitOl Only means Office buildings for gOvernment–that is the Only meaning.

    2. Capital
            a. All other uses of capital are the a one—capital is for all other uses

            b. ALL other uses of capitol/capital are the word capitAL.
            c. Adjectives
                1) Upper case letter: capital letter   
                2) Chief or primary: capital idea or the capital (most important) thing for us                             to     remember
                3) Die by the court: capital punishment
                4) Primary city: the capital city
            d. Nouns
                1) Stock of goods or income: to have capital in the bank
                2) Capital used by itself for the city: go to the capital of the state (i.e. the city that                 is the capital–not the building–the capitol building).

    Watch the blog and Facebook page tomorrow for a quiz over this Wacky Word pair–and over last week‘s vane, vein, and vain! Better start studying!

     

    Advice vs. Advise

    Would you take adviCe from this guy? Or do you like to have more sophisticated people adviSe you?





    Anybody out there tired of seeing people give other people adviSe (zuh–wrong one!) and trying to adviCe (suh–wrong one!) them? Yeah, me too.

    Generally speaking, when you have two word choices with C and S as their options for spelling, it is because you need two completely different sounds:

    -adviCe—The c is here because this word needs the soft sound of C (suh)

    -adviSe–The s is here because this word needs the hard sound of s (zuh)

    Remember: When a c is followed by an e, i, or y, it usually says its soft sound–suh.

    Also remember that when a multi-syllable word has se in it as the end of a syllable, it often makes the zuh sound: please, wise, fuse, close, etc. (though certainly not always).

    The real key is that there ARE two spellings–and one is the noun and is soft (adviCe) and one is the verb and is hard (adviSe).

    When you set out to adviSe somebody, be sure you have enough wisdom to give sound adviCe….. 🙂