Sunday, February 7, 2010

Sight words and doggie poetry

The Child (human) is learning to read.  In his preschool class each week they practice "sight words."  This is basically spelling and memorizing words as class.  This week his sight words included "them" and "my."

The Child is enjoying learning to read, and decided to practice sight words at home.  To encourage him, the Husband found some "Dog Poetry" refrigerator magnets given to us by a friend of mine - Max's mother - a few years ago.  These are individual words that one can use to build dog-themed poetry on the fridge.  The Child decided these were his new sight words, and began to pull them out of the bag, spell them out, say them, and place them on the door.

For a while, it was all very sweet.  The Child would pull out a new sight word (aka dog poetry magnet), such as "squirrel" and "smell", say it, and spell it.  I thought learning dog themed words fit nicely with my plan to turn the boy into a dog fanatic.  What a great way to combine learning and dogs.

Great, that is, until The Child approached me with a word he didn't know, and couldn't sound out.  The conversation went something like this:
(Child) "Mommy, I don't know this word."
(Me) "Well, spell the word for me, and I'll tell you what it is."
(Child) "It starts with a B."
(Me)  "What are the other letters?"
(Child) "Bi"
(Me) "Come show it to me."
Child shows me word.
(long pause from me - can you guess?)
(Me) "That word is Bitch"
(Child) "B-i-t-c-h.  Bitch"
Child runs off to hang up his new sight word.

What was I to do?  In dog terms, of course, it's a legitimate word.  Nothing bad about it.  So I told him the truth.

Yet the thought of my Child running to preschool and telling the teachers the new words he learned this weekend made me cringe.  When The Child wasn't looking I stole that sight word and threw it away.

The Child noticed a word was missing (of course), but couldn't remember the word (whew!).  He continued on with his sight words and thankfully, the next word he pulled out was "pee."  The Child thought that word was so funny that he forgot about the other word.


  1. How will he have an intelligent dinner table conversation without words like bitch?

  2. Along with the lyrics to "Poker Face" - another word that I don't have to take responsibility for.

  3. Ah just wait until he sees "f**k you" on the inside of a public toilet stall........

    Or "rape" sprayed below the STOP on one of those hexagonal red signs.

    I really didn't want to get into what "rape" was, with a four-yr-old....... So I lied -- "Um, I don't know........."

    Our basic plan was to never lie, but I made myself an exception for those words when she was that little.............


    With my kid, it seemed like the moment she had written a word, she had it forever.

    We did things like start with pat, and then think of all the other words that rhymed with pat..... She wrote down hat, cat, sat, mat, bat, etc...... I still have some of those pieces of paper......... :-)

  4. Ah yes, so many more "sight words" to look forward to. I guess the dog poetry isn't so bad after all :)


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...