Someone asked me what the pronunciation of February was and I started to become unsure of how it's actually said. I think I drop the 'r' but I don't know if that is right. I had to go check and see what the great scholarly community of the internet had to say about the issue. It seems that some believe it to be more appropriate to include the 'r' after the 'b'. Others said that not pronouncing the 'r' sound was fine. I suppose I'll tell people from now on that they can pronounce it however they like until someone tries to correct them. It's similar to the whole often debate. I noticed that I was inclined to pronounce the t so I did a double check of the pronunciation. Either is fine. While there are specific elements of the English language that we generally agree on, there are countless variations in vocabulary and usage. That is merely its historical past. So before we begin to gripe about what way is correct and which is wrong, we better take an English sedative.
I'm thinking about trying to do some phonics activities with students. It is brutally painful to try to get students to learn pronunciation by reading and memorizing. They would improve their reading considerably if they had some practice with letter and word patterns. Phonics might help them more than anything. I'm thinking of introducing phonics with the elementary students this year. I will wait till April when the new semester starts and the fifth graders move to sixth grade. I would like to see how well they would do by the time they enter middle school. I would like to practice with the incoming sixth graders as well.
My Japanese writing practice is progressing very slowly. However, it's been highly satisfying to master specific characters repeatedly. Many of them I should already know from my past studies but not writing them makes one forget quickly. According to the stats in the program I use to help me methodically go through kanji vocabulary I know roughly 430 characters. I'm not sure how many words and combinations that comes to in total though. I can feel that I'm making progress and even if I have a long way to go, I don't mind the task. It's rewarding every time I can write the specific strokes to characters. It's fun writing words like drunk driving (飲酒運転). It's even more fun to write washing machine (洗濯機).
I'm thinking of what to make this weekend. The cinnamon rolls need to be made as soon as possible. They are burning a whole in my memory banks. I just want to proceed on but I manage to find a number of excuses. I would like to smoke the piece of pork shoulder I bought a few weeks back. I might do that on Saturday if the weather is going to turn sour on me. Making pizza also sounds good. Oh the problems I face. I'm still trying to get started with screen printing. I need shirts to print on and I need to get the artwork printed on transparencies which I'm dragging my heels into the ground like a wagon making ruts in the muddy soil. I have that giant Illinois map with all the cool facts on it and noticed that the word prairie comes from French. I'm not surprised but I like how English so freely borrows.
The vice principal asked if my house was on fire Tuesday morning. She saw smoke billowing out when she was on her way to work. I'm glad she noticed but the more worrying fact is that she just kept going...