Saturday, January 05, 2008

It's like a tattoo....

There is a crop of "word of the year" blogs out there - people selecting words to focus on for the new year rather than making resolutions. I've always been a big fan of Jim Burke's well words so I had my word selected back in July. (FYI - it is "toss")

In teaching writing, we often work with kids on putting to bed their "tired" words. We bury them, we ban them, we circle them in bright red pen as a reminder to select a more appropriate word for their writing.

But what is funny is that we abuse words ourselves. I know, because I hear my nieces inadvertently mimicking their teachers in how they talk. I feel as if I know these individuals long before I meet them because I hear their voices at the dinner table and during play. In second grade, Amelia's teacher must LOVE the phrase "not necessarily" because that is all we hear. In kindergarten, Sydney's teacher is a big fan of "absolutely!" We knew this, of course, because we heard it two years ago when Amelia had her!!

So I found it amusing that Lake Superior State University created a list of Banished Words for 2008. I have found that wordsmithing is the one word on the list that has long been a pet peeve for me and I inwardly cringe whenever I hear myself saying it. "It is what it is" makes the list and has my vote as well: I hate resignation and much prefer pushing the envelope a bit so this phrase is a bit like nails on a chalkboard for me.

Any other words/phrases out there that should be banished?

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