Let’s face it, reading teaching blogs can get quite intense.  In fact, I do not classify myself as a teaching blogger.  I use my blog as my journal, but I happen to refer a lot to teaching in it, since that’s what’s mostly on my mind.  However, I need some down-time from teaching, and thus I have added some new blogs to my reader.

I was very pleased when this post appeared on my reader from New York blogger, Joanna Goddard, featuring a list of prohibited words given by editor of New York magazine to his staff.  I love words, so this topic was quite inspiring, and I thought wouldn’t it be great to make you aware of the words that really get up my nose.  And the best bit is, you can use it as a lesson idea!

So, for starters, here are some words I would love to see/hear a whole lot less of (and this post is sure to get regularly updated as new annoying words reveal themselves to me!):

to go as in “coffee to go”.  Where is the coffee hoping to go to, exactly?

Connect with meaning to communicate with/engage with/chat to on occasion.

Get students to do…. I just hate the idea of forcefully obliging people to do something, so “get them to do” just sounds a bit crude.

Pop as in a pop of colour.  This just sounds really childish.

Gotten used in British English.  Yes, I’m just a snob.

Here’s the thing as used to introduce a new theme.

On the weekend instead of at the weekend.

Pardon?  I hate that word and far prefer Sorry?   It reminds me of another word I hate.  I’ll let you guess which word that is.  And it’s accompanied by the memory of being constantly told off as a child for saying “What?”

Uggghhhh? As used by impolite students who aren’t listening properly.  Usually used by the younger generation. (Listen to me, I sound old!)

I’ll publish more soon.

What about your most annoying words?


13 Responses to “Words”

  1. Carole Says:

    First up, next up, listen up ( 😉 ), cool (when used by those over 40), real (used in place of ‘really’) for sure (always sounds like it is a foreigner speaking, esp a Dutch person, not that I’ve anything against the Dutch but the phrase jars)

  2. crazykites Says:

    Yes I put a ban on my CAE students using “For sure” for their speaking exam.

  3. johnnytownmouse Says:

    I find myself saying words I dislike because I pick them up from other people. For example, I can’t say awesome – I pronounce the W too much. But it slips in awkwardly. I say ‘sure’ and then I cringe. I say parking lot instead of carpark and street instead of road, and chips instead of crisps. I never say fries instead of chips though – it’s always “did you mean chips, or chips chips?”

  4. crazykites Says:

    hahaha! I’m having this battle as to what type of spanish accent i ought to adopt. cadiz spanish is so funny that i think i ought to adopt it for a laugh, but then i’ll probably never do it convincingly, so should i stick to madridesque spanish? who knows. i suppose you adapt to the language u need to fit in. in america, i guess it’s useful to speak american so as to get your food order right. at the end of the day, food is survival!

  5. Carole Says:

    ..oh yes, and ‘I guess’ instead of ‘I suppose’…although I do that all the time. Yes, ‘awesome’ is irritating. Also things like, ‘big up’. I hate the use of the word, ‘sick’ to mean good…that usage is just sick…by which I mean perverse. Probably the one which grates most is the shrieked utterance, ‘Oh my God!’ for the least significant of situations. This extends to the written, ‘OMG’.

  6. crazykites Says:

    I used both “I guess” and “I suppose”, but then I was avoiding repitition. What about “No biggie” for no problem? Or the Australian one I always use thanks to Neighbours, “No worries”?

  7. Richard Says:

    I wonder how many teachers overuse words like ‘ok’ and ‘right’ in their classes?

    I remember an old teacher of mine mocking us for saying ‘Now then’ as a form of greeting, as in , ‘Now then, how’s it going?’

    He’d say ‘How can it be ‘now’ and ‘then’, boy?’

    Still makes me laugh now!

  8. crazykites Says:

    My celta trainer criticised us when we would say something like “It’s, like, a shop” by responding “It’s like a shop or it is a shop?”

  9. T Bestwick Says:

    I agree with Richard that lots of teachers overuse “OK”. I’ve been noticing recently that they say “All right?” a lot in the Cambridge speaking exams…I keep wanting to throw in the odd “OK?” just to add some variety to the exam!

  10. crazykites Says:

    And “for example, for example” and I’m wanting to tell them “such as, such as, for instance….”

    Though I do say “por ejemplo” a lot in Spanish. 🙂

  11. Carole Says:

    I work as a Teaching Assistant in a UK secondary school. One day, one of the girls in a year 8 class was struggling desperately against a fit of the giggles when the lovely young Maths teacher was presenting a topic. I’d tried giving her the glare, to no avail, so I whispered, as firmly as I could, “CONTROL YOURSELF!” She said, “I can’t help it, Miss. Sir ALWAYS says OK” In the time she was telling me, he must have used the phrase about 5 times…and they kept on coming! It took all my powers of self-control to avoid reverting to being a cheeky teenager and joining in with he 😆 r.

  12. dalecoulter Says:

    I love it when I hear a student say sorry instead of pardon. Even better if they say “I beg your pardon?”

  13. crazykites Says:

    I love it when a kid says “I’m boring”. They try to insult me and it backfires on them. Hilarious.

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