Tuesday, October 7, 2008

i'm obviously a bad teacher

When Richard first came to live with us, he was a horrible speller. He'll admit it. Every time he would write anything on MySpace or Facebook (that's what takes up all his time at home), he would ask us how to spell EVERYTHING! After about, oh, one week, we decided he needed to learn to spell. (Granted, Christian wasn't much help, but he's getting better, too.) I, on the other hand, am quite the stickler when it comes to spelling things correctly. So this was my quest. No matter how hopeless, no matter how far...

So every time Richard would ask us how to spell something, we would respond, "How do you think it is spelled?" and make him sound it out and spell it over and over until he got it right. It's a wonder he even talks to us still. That kid has a lot of patience. Needless to say, he has gotten much better at spelling. Or looking things up online so he doesn't have to bother with our annoying spelling lessons.

But tonight Richard and I took about 10 steps backward. Here was our hilarious conversation:

R: Hmmm. That's a weird word. Plural. How do you spell plural?
M: What do you think?
R: I have no idea.
M: Type what you think it is and then read it out loud.
R: P-L-E-A-R. Plear. Hmmm. Nope. That's not it.
M: Nope. Try again.
R: P... Puluar. I don't know.
M: Ok, how many syllables does it have?
R: Two
M: Ok, what's the first syllable? Sound out the first syllable.
R: Puh-luh
M: That's the first syllable?
R: No. Um.
M: Clap it out while saying each syllable. (clap, clap)
R: (clap) Puh (clap) luh
(both of us laughing pretty hard by now)
M: Puh luh? That's already two syllables! No, say the word. Say the whole word.
R: Puhlual
M: What?
R: Puhlua
M: What? Say the word you're trying to spell.
R: Puhla. I can't say it! You know, it means more than one!
M: PLURAL
R: Yeah, that. Plural.

He got it eventually. But Richard and I were cracking up that he went from not being able to spell the word to not even being able to say the word. I guess I'm not exactly the best teacher if my student is moving backward, huh?

1 comment:

Amy Carter said...

i can't leave you to have no comments on this one... especially since it was pretty funny. it reminds me of highschool, when all i wanted was for dad to tell me the answer to the math problem, but instead he would make me work it out and understand it. i hated it then, but am very happy now that i 'get' math. it ended up being one of my favorite subjects.
i also get that the longer you analyze words, the more they don't make sense. plural is definitely one of those weird words.