Monday, November 22, 2010

Spell It Out

I took a ten question quiz on spelling this morning, via a Squidoo page that someone had pasted on facebook. Once upon a time, I was a terrific speller, but today I got only 8 correct out of ten. 80% does not make for an A paper, does it?

You can take the test yourself at http://www.squidoo.com/top-10-spelling-pet-peeves/66977101-the-quiz-top-10-spelling-pet-peeves  If anyone gets 100%, be sure to tell us. Or tell us how you fare, even if it is less than 100%. I'm thinking that very few will score 100.

Long ago, when we handed in an essay in our English class, we were likely to get lots of red slashes in those words which were misspelled, along with other grammatical errors. Today's kids have no excuse for misspelled words. They write papers on the computer which has a spellcheck tool and underlines errors in red to alert them.  If they don't make corrections before handing in the paper, it's their own fault and they deserve all the red slashes they get.

I wonder if having the spellcheck tool helps in learning how to spell. I'm guessing that in most cases, it doesn't come close to the old-fashioned way we learned. The teacher gave us a spelling list every week, and it was our responsibility to memorize/learn those words. When the spelling test day arrived, the teacher pronounced the word, then used it in a sentence and we wrote the word on our paper. As an extra credit exercise, we could choose one word and write a sentence using the word.

When in grade school, my classes always had spelling bees. Two people were captains and they took turns selecting people to be on their team. I was always picked first because everyone knew I had straight A's in spelling test and was often the last one standing in the spelling bee competition.. It kind of made up for being chosen last when they picked sides for sports teams. An athlete I wasn't! I wonder if kids today have spelling bees. Surely they must, as I see in the paper when they have a spelling champion who goes to state ane national contests.

As nice as spellcheck is, it may have made us lazy. So, how'd you do on the spelling quiz?

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