It’s also very interesting to see how Chris and I have influenced him, and his vocabulary. We never really talked to him like he was a baby or a child, which is evidenced by his use and understanding of words and terms well beyond his age. This can be a great thing, but every coin has two sides, and many words have multiple meanings. And it can often be amusing to hear Zachary’s definitions of words he thinks he knows.
A perfect example came from a Goosebumps book he was reading the other day. I randomly have him read out loud a few pages of the various books he reads to check his comprehension, and he came across the sentence “The window was framed by large, black, ominous shutters.” I made him stop there, because I was sure the word “ominous” was going to trip him up. As it turned out, however, I was wrong. He very clearly defined ominous as “scary and evil”, which, while technically defined as “…foreboding or foreshadowing evil…”, Zachary obviously got the point.
No, ominous did not trip him up at all–but he still had an odd look on his face, like he didn’t quite understand the sentence. After a moment of thought I realized the word that was causing him problems was “framed”, so I asked him if he knew what that word meant. He told me he did, but he didn’t understand what it had to do with a window. Now it was my turn to look perplexed, and I asked him to tell me what the word “framed” meant, to which he replied, “That’s when someone tries to get you into trouble by blaming you for something that you didn’t do. So what would someone be blaming a window for, anyway?”
Priceless. My 7-year old doesn’t equate “framed” with enclosing something, like a picture or a window; no, he understands the nefarious act of falsely accusing someone of something. Where did I go wrong? (That’s a rhetorical question. Heh, one of these days I’ll write a post about that word.)
lol That’s so adorable! And he’s exactly right! That is A definition of “framed”. We don’t often talk about framing a window or picture. We rarely even talk about the window’s frame these days. It’s far more common to consider the criminal aspect of the word since it’s used more often.
I think the English language can be very confusing sometimes. There are lots of words that have widely varied definitions. One word can mean several completely unrelated things. Some words sound the same but have different meanings. Some words mean the same (or similar) but the sound and spelling is completely different. It’s amazing how any of us successfully learn to read and write. lol
Kudos to you and your little man for coming so far. My 6yo (almost 7) has severe dyslexia and struggles with picture books and simple words so I love hearing about other kids who are striving ahead with language. WTG!
It is truly amazing that we learn to read and write–the English language is really full of “stuff and nonsense. It makes me a little sad that he knows more about the criminal activity of being framed, but alas, that is the world we live in.
I’m sorry to hear that your little one struggles with dyslexia. That must be a daily challenge for you; but if anyone is up to the task of helping her child overcome the problem, it’s you!
*lol* cute and you’ve done a great job with him! to bad today’s worl makes other definitions more usual.
Thanks Linda. It’s definitely a challenge trying to raise kids and not sociopaths. Of course, time will tell which I’ve managed, hee hee.
ha! That’s awesome. Though I think I like the fact that he knew what ‘ominous’ means, even better.