Me, spilling out all my thoughts, inner and outer, on just about anything! Lots of poetry, short stories from past experiences, anecdotes about teaching elementary school, music, relationships....garage sale type thing...Something For Everyone!

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Word Play!


When I had my own Gr. 3 class, I had one period a week where we just played with words. They could be the spelling list for the week, words we'd been struggling with in our journals, or any words we thought were interesting.

We traced them on our backs, in the air, glued them with yarn on paper, used huge markers on chart paper, etched them in plasticine, painted them, used chalk on black paper, mimed them, played password, made up rhythmic cheers as each letter was said....the list is endless and the kids loved it. They didn't realize that in playing with them, they were really studying, and it was a heck of a lot more fun than writing them out 5 times each!

I realized that in my daily life, I really do play with words quite a bit and even coin quite a few new words and phrases from my OWN "dictionary"! It's just fun and always gets a reaction from people.

For example, I tend to "Verbify" nouns, (as I just did now!) I named my cat, "Mooky" and she really suits this because she has her own cool walk and springs about in a prancing kind of motion. I called it "mookying" around and it so suits her!

If I'm going to get new colour and highlights in my hair, I say I'm "re-blonding" it or "de-skunking the skunk line"!
When a child asked me in music class if I was going to be guitaring to a song, I thought it was neat and I just started using it.

Another form of word play I do is re-naming things by association. My husband wears those dollar store glasses to read with and I swear he looks just like one of those badgers in, The Wind In The Willows, in his tree house, snug by the fire, sitting in the armchair, watch on a chain in his waistcoat and those half spectacles perched way down on his nose. Now, all his glasses will forever more be called, "The Badgers"! Our friends have all picked up and use this term too.


In fact many of my new words catch on and somehow just become part of the language of those around us. Talk about local vernacular! I think it's neat. Words of this kind are more lively, fun and colourful. They enrich and infuse our language with more connected personal meaning.

Do you play with words? What phrases or words have you invented? Have you started using some new word because someone created it and you just love it??!


Mother of Invention, just goofin' around, transforming and tailor-making some more words!

24 Comments:

Blogger Annelisa said...

My dad was French, and my mum Danish, and although they both spoke English (rarely spoke their native languages at home) my mum, especially, just used to make up words to suit something. And because they sounded right, I just assumed they were right! I used to come up with wierd phrases (and darn it, I can't think of even one just now! :-( ) and people would take the mickey. But it was ok, because, like with you, they kinda liked the sound of them and became common local use...
Isn't language a wonderful adaptive and expressive thing!

Thursday, October 26, 2006

 
Blogger brian said...

Afternoon,

Thanks for stopping by and reading so many of my works.:) I can see why enjoyafing my poetry is something you relate to.

Come on back when you have the time.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

 
Blogger Barbara said...

I'm sure it's people just like you who are responsible for adding new words to the English language. We now Xerox, Blog, Google, and do many things our grandparents would never have understood.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

 
Blogger steve said...

My favorite is "Figment of my Hallucination"....
my Dad used to say "Everything I touch turns to wood"
My mom's family used to say "I'll Suwanee" instead of "I'll swear"
I have a whole mexicon of 'em... like Archie Bunker!

Thursday, October 26, 2006

 
Blogger Mother of Invention said...

Annelisa:
Language is surely a neat thing,especially when you have fun with it and expand it creatively!

Brian: Thanks for the return visit! Yes, I could relate to your poetrifying blog!

Barbara: They'd probably think they were bad words! Our whole language has changed and I guess they have to add more to the dictionary each year. Is blogging there? It will be if not!

Steve: Yes, you sure have some good ones! Never heard of suwanee!If we all got together, we could make a new addition to the Dictionary!

Thursday, October 26, 2006

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I do, but like trying not to think about pink elephants, I can't bring any up yet.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

 
Blogger Mother of Invention said...

Old Lady: When you do, lemme know!

Friday, October 27, 2006

 
Blogger Richard said...

I do not frequently make up my own words, but I am not averse to verbing nouns, splitting infinitives, and otherwise misusing words. There are two words whose prescribed usage I find awkward: "hopefully" and "plus". I see nothing wrong with saying, "Hopefully, tomorrow will be a sunny day." or "I have to take the kids to gymnastics; plus I have to mow the lawn."

However, I find there is a difference when it is done by someone who is literate (and likely knows they are breaking the rules) and someone who is illiterate. One of my pet peeves, is the use of ignorant for arrogant - a surprisingly large number of people commit this error.

Friday, October 27, 2006

 
Blogger Richard said...

I do not frequently make up my own words, but I am not averse to verbing nouns, splitting infinitives, and otherwise misusing words. There are two words whose prescribed usage I find awkward: "hopefully" and "plus". I see nothing wrong with saying, "Hopefully, tomorrow will be a sunny day." or "I have to take the kids to gymnastics; plus I have to mow the lawn."

However, I find there is a difference when it is done by someone who is literate (and likely knows they are breaking the rules) and someone who is illiterate. One of my pet peeves, is the use of ignorant for arrogant - a surprisingly large number of people commit this error.

Friday, October 27, 2006

 
Blogger Lynn said...

Hey that is neat.

"I'm blogging"
This could mean I am reading a blogroll, writing a blog, researching for a piece, downloading or uploading photographs, or trying to fix spelling mistakes.

"Leave me alone. I'm crying"
This means I am trying to blog. But it requires code and I am having a hard time figuring it out. I whimper aloud in frustration and yell out "I don't understand!"

"I'm busy"
This could mean I am sitting in a daze. In the cloudy recesses of my mind.

"I can't even function!" This is my over 40 catch phrase. The kids picked up on it. They notice that now I am over 40 I can't even function alot!
It is funny and embarassing when Cam not only mocks me,but does a vocal impression of me or my mother as well. Normally it is followed by fits of roll on the floor laughter by all, cuz he is really good.

Friday, October 27, 2006

 
Blogger Mother of Invention said...

Richard: I don't see that much wrong with misusing words verbally or even in casual writing, but I suppose when you're writing to be published, it should be proper.

My pet peeves are when someone says,"I should have went", "What are yous doing?" "He should have done that, irregardless."
I want to scream! I've never heard ignorant for arrogant.

Lynn: It is neat to have your own family's "inside" words and expressions. It is just what I was saying in the post...it enriches the personal connection and makes it fun and more meaningful for the people involved.

You'll understand this one, "I'm in fibrofog" means I'm tired, sore, and not with it mentally!

My fibro-fog cognitive deficit makes me get things mixed up like the sign "Chess and Checkers" I've read as "Cheese and Crackers"!! Maybe that's because I was hungry!??

Friday, October 27, 2006

 
Blogger Richard said...

It usually comes up in sentences that go: "I can't stand people who are ignorant." or "He burns me up, he is so ignorant."

While it is true that one may not tolerate fools. I eventually learned that most people who were saying this actually meant arrogant.

Friday, October 27, 2006

 
Blogger meno said...

I want to go back to school and i want you to be my teacher.

We love words in our family. Scrabble, boggle, dictionary.

"amusion" is the only word that i can think of right now, but from now on i will make a note of them.

Friday, October 27, 2006

 
Blogger Mother of Invention said...

Richard: Guess we'd all be surprised at what some of us hear being used! I just love to play with words, then I start using words that aren't correct pronunciations just to be silly, and then think, my gosh, they probably thing I'm ignorant when I'm just having fun. Example: "Valentime's Day" ...I knew a teacher that said it like this all the time...and it wasn't to be funny. Same with Libary.

Meno: Thanks! And what does amusion mean for you? I used to watch "Password" on tv and I played the game too with my friends. What a hoot we had at the cottage playing this 1967 version with my older sisters!

Friday, October 27, 2006

 
Anonymous colleen said...

You know I do! One of my favorite created words was one my son made up combining hug and cuddle...Want to huggle? he asked me.

I used to make spagetti letters with kids when I worked in day care.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

 
Blogger Mother of Invention said...

Colleen: That's a good one! My mom used to called butterscotch, scutterbotch! Never did sgaghetti letters!

Saturday, October 28, 2006

 
Blogger bobealia said...

I name people. I once named someone in university who went on to become semi-famous. On the band's album, they use the nick-name I invented. Nobody remembers that it was me who started the name.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

 
Blogger Mother of Invention said...

Bobealia: That is cool! I nickname people too.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

 
Blogger Sandy said...

Well I will say this, I so wish I had a 3rd grade teacher like you way back when!

Michele sent me over to wordify with you. (Did that count?)

Sunday, October 29, 2006

 
Blogger Mother of Invention said...

Sandy: That's a great one! Thanks! I loved teaching!

Sunday, October 29, 2006

 
Blogger Carmi said...

I love your approach to learning and using words, and am convinced that your former students will grow up and remember your lessons above all. My wife teaches Grade 2, and I know she electrifies her students in a similar way. It's a joy to read of another educator who gets it.

As a writer, playing with words is core to my existence. Every time I publish something, my goal is to slip a word in that I figure most editors would reject. I think I'm percolating some neat ones now...thanks for the inspiration!

Sunday, October 29, 2006

 
Blogger Mother of Invention said...

Carmi: Thanks so much! I'm glad to hear of another Canadian primary teacher who likes to make learning fun. It's a little harder now in the new curriculum but I slip it in anyway! Hope your percolator's plugged in!

(If she's doing mammals, beavers in particular, have her check out the chant I wrote about them, called, "Take a Chance On a Chant!" on sidebar.)

Sunday, October 29, 2006

 
Blogger brooksba said...

My friend, Dana, came up with "vanting." It's when venting isn't enough and ranting just doesn't do the trick.

I "verbify" nouns as well. Why not?

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

 
Blogger Mother of Invention said...

Brooksba: I love "vanting"!

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

 

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