Monday, January 11, 2010

Feeling smug

My younger daughter switched music teachers last November. Her new lessons are held in a furnished basement studio of a family in Spokane. On our first day, my older daughter was with us but she immediately peeled off to play with the four children of the music teacher and his wife.

Later we found out it's a homeschooling family. My older daughter knew that right away. "How could you tell?" I asked her.

"Because the kids have an advanced vocabulary," she replied. (Honest, that's exactly what she said.)

So as a homeschooling parent, I felt a bit smug when I read that many teens - while they may understand around 40,000 words - have a working vocabulary of only about 800 words. This is known as "teenspeak."

Yep, smug.


  1. Fellow Smugger here :-)

    We had a family come to our house to buy something and while the dad talked with my husband the 4 kids sat quietly in the truck. My 9 year old daughter looked over at the truck and said That's a homeschooling family. I asked how she knew that and she said Because they are all reading. She was correct!

  2. Should make you PROUD. Well done.

    See Ya

  3. OK, but even public schooled kids CAN have a great vocab. Sam asked his friend, a fellow fisherman, if the stream he was fishing in was bordered in dense foliage. His friend looked at him blankly and said, "I don't even know what that means..."

  4. I think the point is this: parents who rely totally on the public schools to educate their children are left with children who do not read, and have the small vocabulary.

    "...even public schooled kids CAN have a great vocab." IF their parents teach them to read at home.


  5. You don't need to inform us at you are feeling smug, it's quite obvious that this is usually the case.