Mike’s Dump

November 1, 2005

Riten English is Dum

Filed under: Home — mikesdump @ 5:44 am

Isabelle started grade one this year. I don’t remember very much from
my early years in school. I remember playing dodge ball in gym. I
remember playing tag at recess and I must have learnt to read a least a
little in grade one because I remember it was a lot less fun than
kindergarten!

After a couple months into grade one, Isabelle thankfully, still seems
excited. I don’t think she leaves the classroom everyday and tells
Sandy “Grade one is GREAT!” like she did on the first day but when I
talk to her about her day it is always positive.

Without a doubt what I hated most in school was spelling. I couldn’t
stand spelling. I don’t know if my hatred of the English written
language started at that young age or if it evolved after learning 2 +
2 will always be 4 but there are three different ways to spell to (to,
too, two) and do (do, dew, due). Don’t forget about knot, not, knight
and night, what a load of crap!

I looked into the silent “k” issue once online and found out the letter
used to be pronounced. I’ll have to dig up the information again when
I’m completely bored (board?) out of my mind but from what I remember
reading people in the 15th or 16th century stopped pronouncing the “kn”
combination because it was difficult. If this is the real reason why
there is a useless “k” in front of several words why didn’t anyone in
the past 500 years say let’s drop the “k” when we write it?

Isabelle recently had a spelling test which Sandy and I helped her
practice for everyday. When I was helping her she was having problems
with two words: you and here. Adults don’t even think about how to
spell these two words (I guess the exception would be “here” because
you’d need to know the context so you don’t write “hear”� stupid,
stupid language) but we all went through the same challenges when we
were learning. I’m impressed she doesn’t completely loose her mind and
go off on a pointless rant on how dumb the English written language is�
maybe in a couple of years.

Some people have thought about fixing the language but realistically it
can’t be “fixed”. It is tough enough for a lot of Canadians to use the
metric system let alone relearn how to read and write.

A couple ideas that I heard about before I found interesting are here
http://www.omniglot.com/writing/visiblespeech.htm
http://www.omniglot.com/writing/franklin.htm

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