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Spell Check


JCraft

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This is one of my most favorite subjects! I LOVE spelling and grammar. I make mistakes, too, though. Bernie pointed out that we can edit our own posts by clicking on the little paper-and-pencil icon at the top of each post. I never knew that before, but what a relief. For any of us who has been embarrassed by a mistake that sneaked into one of our posts, self-editing is an option. I'm especially prone to typing errors when posting via my laptop.

Darlene, your posts are examples of A+ work, but I'm sure you know that because the foundation is clearly there with you! A person who knows the basic rules has the confidence to write anything. I considered teaching grammar, but wound up following a different path (writing and editing). When I see or hear mistakes, especially the really common ones, I crave to correct them. Pronoun mistakes (misuse of the words "I," "me," and "myself") are rampant in society in general, even among business professionals and teachers, but with a very quick lesson, anybody could learn right from wrong. I always bite my tongue, however, because I think most people, especially those who consider themselves educated, find it offensive to be corrected.

Everybody on this board should feel comfortable posting, though. I think we all understand typos, occasional misspellings, and some awkward sentence structure. Don't ever let the fear of mistakes keep you from posting, but if anyone wants to discuss the I-me-myself problem, feel free to email me.

Jennifer

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I make my share of mistakes, like most, but what I usually do if I suspect I've misspelled something before I make the final post is to copy/paste my post into a "new message" in my outlook mail, and spell check it there. If an error pops up, I correct it before I hit "add reply".

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Julia makes a good point. If I'm not sure how to spell a word I'm trying to use here on the board, I'll spell check it in Microsoft Word first. The thesaurus in Word comes in plenty handy, too. Computers are great for things like that. Also, it's so fast and easy to check definitions on the Internet now that there's seldom a reason to reach for the dictionary anymore.

Does anyone think handwritten language will die out completely because of computers and all the other gadgets that let us communicate via clicks and keystrokes? When was the last time anyone here wrote a real letter, the old-fashioned way, and sent it via mail instead of using email? Christmas cards are about the only personal messages I send in the mail these days, but many of my friends have started sending holiday greetings via email now. Checks are another example of pen and paper going by the wayside. I still use checks quite a bit, but I think most people use credit and debit cards now. Also, I still pay bills by mail, though I think most people have evolved to paying bills online. I attended college in the mid-1980s, and was probably in the last batch of students before personal computers really took over. I used to handwrite my papers, and pay a professional to type them (when I typed my own, they were riddled with correction fluid!). I assume handwriting is still taught in schools, or have computers superseded that, too? (Ah, "supersede" was a tough spelling to learn, but that's one I don't have to look up anymore.)

Jennifer

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Wow, Kath! A music woman and an English teacher, too?! I'm very impressed. No wonder you are so well spoken! I've always loved writing. I had an advantage. An aunt who lived with us. She read the newspaper to me from the time I was a few months old! And taught me to read and write in cursive before I went to school. She also loved music (as did my parents). So I can't take credit for my writing--to quote Eric's song: "She did it!" She passed away in 1990 at age 80-1/2, but whenever I have to write something, I silently thank her. Kathy, your ex-students must thank you a lot!

smile --Darlene

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Kazumi, Your English is very good. And it was a joy to finally meet you!

Jen, I love to write letters the old fashioned way. I just love to sit at my desk and choose the perfect words for what I want to say. And guess what? I write everything in fountain pen. Writing with a fountain pen is just class, and I hate to write with anything else. I love different color inks as well. Hopefully, the Parker company will stay in business and not become the victim of a takeover. I would truly mourn if that ever happened.

smile --Darlene

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Kathy, I was at the tailor the other day, and this guy came in to get his trousers shortened. As soon as he walked into the room, I just looked at him and said, "I KNOW you. Did you play the violin in elementary school?" He said, "Oh my God! You were my teacher!" He came over and hugged me! It took me a few seconds but I pulled his name out of my memory. He couldn't believe it. Whenever a former student comes into a room, I just get this feeling, and *know* them. This young man was 40, and I had him in my 4th grade class when he was 9 years old. He's now an engineer. I told him I was going to Cleveland, and he said "What a switch! My brother lives in Cleveland and is coming out here for Thanksgiving!" I told him it really makes me proud to see my students grow up to be as fine and successful as he. I even remember his parents. My dressmaker, Maryann, just shook her head and smiled, because she's seen this happen in her shop before. I bond very strongly with my kids, and I just don't forget them. Kathy, it sounds like you're the same. Somehow, they never do grow up in your mind. I see them the way they were when I last saw them. I see some of my girls come into school with THEIR children, and I just get tears in my eyes, because THEY were *my* little girls. The best thing about being a teacher is definitely NOT the salary...

smile --Darlene

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Jen, When I'm signing them up for strings, I call every parent of every child to discuss the program. I learn how to spell their name, and if the child is Indian, what dialect (besides Hindi) they speak. I try to put kids into classes with at least one child who speaks their dialect or language. From past students I've learned how to speak some Chinese and Korean and they've given me Chinese, Korean and Indian names (Wang Mei-Xin, which means "King of the beautiful violins!", Kim Jee-Yoon, don't know what that means, and Deena, which means "the sun."). So I can speak some Chinese and Korean to students and parents. I give my home phone number to every parent in my letter about the program, with instructions to call me anytime. Because I probably speak to every parent of every child I have during the year, I do remember them pretty well. After two years with me, (4th and 5th grade), I always cry when my 5th graders and I do our last performance at 5th grade graduation. I go to their middle school, jr high and high school concerts, and tell them they'll always be "my" students, and to call me if I can ever help them with anything. One of my former students is the sweetest Chinese girl named Ruby (I call her "Ruby Tuesday"),who is a sophomore in college. She still calls me from Vermont for advice, and "just to talk." And I love it...

smile --Darlene

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