Among the many things I try to cram into the brains of my middle school students is the idea that increasing their vocabularies, will in turn increase their level of knowledge. Or, I reason, if nothing else, they will at least sound smart (my students love the idea of "outsmarting someone with words!)
Today we were tackling our Five a Day List. I put five words up daily, and their job is to look them up and give me either the definition or a good synonym. Today the wordinnocent began a whole discussion centered on a synonym for the word, ignorance.
We began to discuss the difference between three words people tend to use interchangeably: ignorance, stupid, and dumb.
I pointed out that ignorance was listed as a synonym for innocent, but stupid and dumb were not included. It was interesting to listen to the group reason out that ignorant meant that you did something "dumb,"because you didn't know any better. Maybe you weren't aware of the rules, or the procedures.
Dumb was a step up from ignorant. "You know better, but once in a while when you aren't paying attention, you mess up," (my students definition.)
Stupid, now that was something else entirely. "Stupid is you know better and you keep on doing the same thing over and over again. Now that's just plain ole' stupid!"
I was proud of their reasoning skills. At least they understood the point of the lesson,
"It's just plain stupid to use the same dumb words over and over again." (Quote from one of my students.)
Causes Annette Talbert Supports
Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, RIF (Reading is Fundamental),
Hands On Foundation, Dignity U Wear, Girls, Inc.