I’m sure I’m not the only one that feels thrown for a loop by the Daylight Savings time change over the weekend. The semi-annual time change seems to get harder the older I get and the more kids whose time schedules I have to manage as well. 🙂
On top of the time change and the usual life excitement and distractions, we’ve had ongoing internet connectivity issues that have seemed particularly bad the last several evenings. Tony spent a while on the phone with tech support last night and a few changes we’ve made to our set-up might help…or we’ll have to replace some of our equipment soon! So, all that adds up to having a hard time finding time to blog the last few days.
I’ve recently downloaded several vintage English books on to my iPad — books covering topics like grammar, spelling usage and composition. I just love looking at vintage books. Having finished up Sentence Family (review coming soon!), I decided we would start the vintage story Grammarland by M.L. Nesbitt. We read the introduction today, and I was struck by the quote, “For who could imagine a king or queen saying, ‘I is,’ or ‘you was,’ or ‘it wasn’t me.’ No one speaks that way except people who have never heard of Judge Grammar.” Now, I think I have heard plenty of people say, “It wasn’t me!” At least, plenty of children in my house. Or maybe they are more likely to just say, “Not me!”. I would venture to guess that “Not I” and “It wasn’t I” sound pretty formal to most 21st century readers/listeners. I love the formal style of this 1878 story, but it will be interesting to see as well how many other grammar conventions have changed in the past 135 years!
I was also struck by a little statement in the introduction to The Modern Speller by Kate Van Wagenen, another book I downloaded “just for fun.” The book starts out by mentioning that this book emphasizes teaching spelling by the Dictation Method — essentially with full sentences instead of lists of words because it helps the student move toward real composition. The author states, “It is because of this great gain that in all modern schools, teachers are beginning to recognize the advantages of teaching spelling by the dictation method.” Maybe the modern schools were doing this in 1916 with Van Wagenen wrote her spelling book, but clearly this knowledge was lost somewhere along the way…since all “modern” schools when I was a kid and most schools and spelling methods today teach with a list of words. 🙂 I’m curious now as to how this dictation method exactly worked itself out in these “modern” schools of 1916.