Thursday, September 11, 2008
Forbidden Words Accordion Book
When I was doing a poetry project with middle school kids last spring, I came across a poem with the word nice in it and cringed. I remembered that one of my children's teachers banned the use of the word in her classroom. While life would be way too exhausting if we always had to come with a creative and appropriate word every time we wanted to give a little positive acknowledgment, we certainly should avoid nice and other neutral and nondescript words in writing. This month's project is a book to keep track of forbidden words and come up with alternatives.
I made my book with just four pages instead of the 8 in the directions. I used one half of the side panel of a grocery bag for the accordion and pieces cut from a pancake mix box for the cards. I wanted to use the design on the box as a border so I wrote the words on cut pieces of paper (with writing on the other side) and glued them to the cards. You could also make a longer book to hang in the classroom with each student contributing a word.
Word choice advice for writers: Forbidden words
Advice about avoiding overly used words in writing.
One teacher's take on forbidden words plus other ideas to expand vocabulary.