Hey, how do you spell vacuum?


Don’t worry if you don’t know the answer – Siri can help!

Standing outside school this afternoon waiting for Bethany, a bunch of us moms were talking about words that are spelled weird.  You know the words, the ones that no matter how old you get, and how much you know how they should be spelled you still either misspell them or look at them 18 times trying to figure out if it’s right or not.

Broccoli, vacuum, avocado (HA!  I had this one wrong…again!  Thank you spell check).

The conversation flowed into how the technological trend of today means our kids don’t stand a chance in the spelling department.  Spell check (as I mentioned above), text messages, Twitter -hello 140 characters and the like negate a person’s need to spell words correctly.

A good number of the “young people” in my life are prime examples of how grammar (I ♥ grammar) is dying and spelling is soon to follow.  Cursive writing has been removed from the curriculum and it all makes me sad.  I understand that technology is the way of the future and we have to get with the times, but do we have to let everything go?

The school system might let it go, but we won’t!  I’m going to do my very best to make sure Bethany and Audrey are given the gift of spelling, grammar, AND cursive writing.  Firstly because improper English drives me mental and second because I believe it’s key in presenting yourself as educated and confident.

Anyways, driving home I started thinking about all the “weird” words in the English language that get misspelled.  Some of them because they’re spelled nothing like they’re pronounced (xylophone anyone?), others because there are multiple spellings for a word that’s said the same way (there, their, they’re?) and others because they’re spelled the same and pronounced differently depending on intended use (wind, wind,?).  I got to wondering, what exactly are the most commonly misspelled words in the English language?

Of course, I did what any self-respecting person does when they have a question…I headed straight for Google and here’s what I found:

THIS quiz, that looks like fun.  Go through and see which words you can identify as misspelled.  I’ve yet to take it, but I will later 🙂

– And THIS LIST of the 10 words you NEED to Stop Misspelling.  The comics with it totally made me laugh!

From all the different sites I visited these 10 seemed to appear time and again:

  1. Calendar
  2. Accommodate
  3. Conscious
  4. Discipline
  5. Vacuum
  6. Occasionally
  7. Maintenance
  8. Jewelry (girls, let’s make sure we spell this one right!)
  9. Independent
  10. Grateful

I have to admit of the words on the list above from time to time, and sometimes more often, I’ve struggled with most of those words.  Occasionally gets me, I want to double the “s” and maintenance gets me too, I want to spell it maintenence.

What about you?  Are there any words that get you every time?  Are YOU worried about the grammatical future of your children?  Maybe I should just learn to loosen the bone*…but I won’t.

*I heard this quote a while ago “Loosen the Bone Wilma” talking about relaxing a little and it made me giggle.  I’ve been waiting to use it, and now I have!  Small things people, small things!


9 thoughts on “Hey, how do you spell vacuum?

  1. I get you. I totally get you.

    So is this the right time to challenge you on your use of ‘spelt’ vs. ‘spelled’?
    And check all your ‘their/they’re’ in that same paragraph. 🙂

    When reading blogs and publications, I normally leave typos alone unless I know the person writing would really care to know about them.

    I think the most irritating one to me is ‘defiantly’ instead of ‘definitely’ … though it does sometimes make sentences much more humorous than the author intended.

  2. Great post because I LOVE grammar too. I recently learned that cursive writing was taken out of the curriculum which I think is ridiculous. We still need to use cursive for all the things we sign our names for. I too will be making sure my children learn spelling, grammar and cursive writing. You are not alone.

    I took the test and scored 20/27 which is worse than I thought I'd do. I think part of it is if you asked me to spell it, I'd spell it right. But put it next to a bunch of misspellings and I get confused.
    Kathleen recently posted..A Healthier Poutine: A Little Bit Healthier, Still Delicious! #pgmom

  3. Remember the discussion about “Honey I Shrank the Kids?” Shouldn’t it be “Honey I SHRUNK the Kids?” 🙂

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