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#114153 - 10/31/03 05:38 PM Re: Is down an ejaculation?
Wordwind Offline
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Registered: 09/30/01
Posts: 6296
Loc: Piedmont Region of Virginia, U...
Well, at least consider the comment of a student I was working with after school today. He's never really concentrated on parts of speech before in his life, and he has been quite confused so far this year.

However, a few light bulbs have gone off--and he even made the connection between "object of the preposition" and the "objective case pronouns" today. He also laughed when I told him that on the test I would try to trap kids by calling proper nouns a part of speech in a multiple choice listing of various incorrect and one correct listing. He's coming along so well that I got tears in my eyes right after he left me today. There is no high higher in my life than seeing a student begin to understand. It is the best thing I know.

I asked him to name the parts of speech (one of many practices) and he said,

"Noun...pronoun...verb....adjective....adverb....suburb....conjunction....and ejaculation."

And I promise you I am telling God's truth. I can hold my laughter almost always, but when he said that final part of speech I burst out laughing and laughed and laughed and laughed. I laughed so hard that he began laughing with me, all the while asking, "What's so funny, Ms. E? What's so funny?"

#114154 - 10/31/03 08:07 PM Re: Is down an ejaculation?
Bingley Offline
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Registered: 04/09/00
Posts: 3065
Loc: Jakarta
Indeed, Mrs. E., what is so funny? The boy is simply a mite old-fashioned. I quote from Webster's dictionary (http://machaut.uchicago.edu/cgi-bin/WEBSTER.sh?WORD=ejaculation):

2. The uttering of a short, sudden exclamation or prayer, or the exclamation or prayer uttered.

He is merely unaware that our sex-obsessed society has focused on the biological aspects of the third definition. Such innocence should surely be enouraged as eminently praiseworthy rather than provoke unbridled laughter.


#114155 - 10/31/03 08:19 PM Re: Is down an ejaculation?
Buffalo Shrdlu Offline
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Registered: 06/24/02
Posts: 7210
Loc: Vermont
"one doesn't often hear 'down!' while ejaculating", he interjected...

formerly known as etaoin...

#114156 - 10/31/03 08:30 PM Re: Is down an ejaculation?
sjmaxq Offline
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Registered: 07/20/03
Posts: 3230
Loc: Te Ika a Maui
I'm glad I'm not the only one, Bingley. I had actually had to look twice before I got the joke.

noho ora mai

#114157 - 11/01/03 08:19 AM MELT
AnnaStrophic Offline
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Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 6511
Loc: lower upstate New York
Name calling, aka the ad hominem approach, is so needless and unfriendly. I wish you and the tiny minority of others who resort to this m.o. would refrain and, instead, participate in the spirit of this board.

As for interjections, I disagree, and I am also a "girl." It's a matter of begging the question here, I think. The word in this context is an adverb no matter what the dog does.

#114158 - 11/01/03 09:41 AM Re: MELT
Wordwind Offline
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Registered: 09/30/01
Posts: 6296
Loc: Piedmont Region of Virginia, U...

I certainly realize that ejaculations can be verbal! Lord, what do you take me for?

However, after moving from suburbs to ejaculations, I just was so amused that I couldn't hold my laughter. And, you know? We were working after school, Friday afternoon, and were happy to be working--both of us. We pulled down maps, books, wrote, tried all kinds of combinations--and we worked a long, productive period of time. Things were coming together in this our second Friday afternoon of after-school sessions. Forgive me for being human, but I just couldn't help it. And he was as amused at me for being spontaneous rather than the usually under-control being my more pedigogical persona is.

Let me immediately put on my pince-nez and purse my lips and return to suburbs and ejaculations and adverbs and interjections with complete fastidiousness and congratulate him on his synonym for interjection. Lord, this suit of steel wool feels good.

#114159 - 11/01/03 10:10 AM Re: MELT
Alex Williams Offline

Registered: 01/05/01
Posts: 1814
Loc: Spam Factory
Suburbs? Is that a joke? /needs more coffee

#114160 - 11/01/03 10:38 AM Re: suburbs as parts of speech
Wordwind Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/30/01
Posts: 6296
Loc: Piedmont Region of Virginia, U...
You all must not work with kids very often, is all I can say--or at least with kids who have gotten basic information mixed up over the years. Or with kids who at times have trouble with auditory processing.

For the record, the fact that this work is wonderfully rewarding--that a teenaged student who had detested English in previous years was willing to stay after school on a Friday afternoon--remember your own Friday afternoons in high school?--was terrific. And that he'd remembered to come by my classroom for two Fridays in a row! Wow!

So, we looked at maps and books together--and wrote a lot--and talked a lot about words in the language...differences between prepositions and their objects, for instance. This was a step-by-step procedure with several steps backwards. For instance, we worked the classic exercise where you draw a cloud and then think of words that would fit this construction:

The bird flew ____________ + the cloud.

The bird flew ____________ + the clouds.

It doesn't work for every preposition, such 'according to' and 'aside from', but it works for most of the hundred I use on our working list. Every now and then my student would say something like, "The clouds went over the sky." And I knew he'd lost focus on putting clouds as the object of the preposition. But, by and large, most of his reponses filled in the formula well--and he went on to replace either 'the cloud' or 'the clouds' with either 'it' or 'them'. You might think that this sounds terribly dry, but it wasn't because I was witnessing the joy on his face as he realized really important things, such as when we plugged in objective case pronouns as objects of prepositions, he said, "It sounds wrong to say 'about I'"--and I thought, 'Hallelujah!'

Anyway, at the end of a very long session when I had him list those eight parts of speech and, although he nailed most of them, he said 'suburb' and 'ejaculation', it just cracked me up. And I cracked him up when I cracked up. We're on the right path here, and, no, I wouldn't have gone into various definitions of ejaculation with a student. Quite improper.

#114161 - 11/01/03 11:05 AM Re: character
Jackie Online   content

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Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 11613
Loc: Louisville, Kentucky
Speaking of speaking volumes: We were working after school, Friday afternoon...and we worked a long, productive period of time...our second Friday afternoon of after-school sessions. My Dear--it is a rare gem of a teacher who is willing to stay after on a Friday. They will remember you for the rest of their lives, I think. Because so few teachers make it so clear that they care.

MELT--I bid you welcome aBoard, but feel obliged to add this: by and large, we love each other, here; many of us have become friends, both virtually and in real life. We do try to welcome newcomers; but frankly, we don't like ugliness of any kind. (Um--I don't mean to imply that we're perfectly free of it all the time; we're not.) I do realize that sometimes there is teasing here that may appear ugly, but it is done between friends who know that the recipient will take it in the right spirit; and that a newcomer would have no way of knowing the background. And I guess if that upsets a newcomer, we'll just have to keep explaining; I don't think it's realistic to expect a group to constantly be on their guard in case new people might be around; and also, I for one would miss the fun. Quite recently I jumped on a newcomer quite hard, for me, but she had directly insulted someone whom I hold very dear (yours wasn't quite so direct). I tried to get it across that I would welcome sincere interest in information- and fun-exchange, but as far as I know she hasn't posted again, and I do feel bad about that. But I will not sit idly by when my friends are under the gun, and I make no apology for that.
I say all this to you, MELT, not as chastisement--it would also be unrealistic to expect a newcomer to understand all the nuances/ins and outs--but by way of giving information, with a tad of warning in it. We do welcome differences of opinions, truly; but if someone has something ugly to say, then I would ask that it be done by Private Message, not in public, please.

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