Dear Gracious Ladies,
My daughter hates practicing her spelling, but my survival group’s spelling bee is coming up in a few weeks. I really want her to do well, but she keeps saying that since we are living in a zombie world, why does it matter if she can win a spelling bee? What need does she have to spell things correctly? Please help!
Stickler for Spelling
Dear Stickler for Spelling,
I understand your frustration. I have this same very same problem with Little Maude and Little Lydia a few months back. At first, like you, I tried to reason with them. I warmly explained that what separated zombies from us (in addition to dietary preference and a living heartbeat) was the proper use of language skills. Furthermore, I listed all the uses for language in our current landscape and provided examples of how a simple misspelling or grammatical error could lead to death or dismemberment.
For example, I once mistakenly entered a grocery store which had “AL DED HEAR” spray painted on the entrance. While I came out of that situation unscathed due to my superior rifle skills, correct spelling might have saved me the ammo.
But I think your problem is not your explanatory skills, it’s the fact that you are trying to reason with a child using logic and communication. Amateur mistake! Instead, I recommend you try the time-tested punishment: dinner-deprivation. It may be harsh, but after a couple of days they’ll learn to S-P-E-L-L or they will S-T-A-R-V-E.
Miss E, the 2003 second grade Spelling Bee Champion