The Möther Töngüe, Part II

I recently wrote here about my four-year-old daughter, Little Sis, and her, well, “unique” vocabulary in which she has created her own words for some everyday items. “Takken”, for example, is her word for “napkin”. And there’s our personal favorite, “Wasawase”, which stands for just about anything you want.

Now, I chalk up much of this vocal originality to her being four. She’s still learning some of the basic semantics of the English language, and besides, all kids make up their own words as they learn to talk and get more exposure to people and the ever-important lineup of kids programming on Netflix.

[And if you say, “I NEVER allow my CHILDREN to watch ANYTHING on TELEVISION!” then you are either lying or insane. You have small kids. If it weren’t for TV occasionally serving to placate your children’s incessant need for attention, juice and to tattle on each other, then millions of dinners would never get made and every house in America would look like the county dump.]

But, our four-year-old isn’t the only one in our home to have a sense of creativity when it comes to expressing herself. Our six-year-old daughter, Maddo, also has a communication style of her own. And most of the time, that involves her communicating at a volume that rivals The Who at its Guinness Book Of World Records-level-loudest in the 70s. Yeah, he kid has a mouth on her, but her grammar and vocabulary at great. And she knows all the words to “Squeeze Box”, too.

Maddo is in kindergarten, and that’s when kids start getting real, daily writing practice. Not just scribbling their names on a piece of paper, but putting words together to make sentences that actually say something, whether or not the spelling is correct. The idea is that kids writing something that sounds like the actual word is better than writing nothing at all. They call it “inventive spelling”, and I can see the theory behind it.

Some of Maddo's more "inventive" ways of spelling.
Some of Maddo’s more “inventive” ways of spelling.

However, because these are kindergartners we’re talking about, and spelling isn’t necessarily their strong suit, what they put on the paper can end up looking more like something you’d expect to see in a ransom note than from a kindergartner practicing her spelling.

It can also be quite hilarious, too, as a recent look at some of Maddo’s, more “inventive” spelling efforts proved…

IMG_1959 - Version 2

Inventive Version: The skrf is worm.

Reality Translation: The scarf is warm.

Comments: When I first saw “worm”, I thought Maddo was talking about an actual worm. I also thought “skrf” was maybe a character from “Big Hero 6”.

IMG_1959 - Version 3

Inventive Version: The bar is cut.

Reality Translation: The bear is cute.

Comments: Technically, “The bar is cut” is a legitimate sentence, although it doesn’t make much sense. I know bears can be cute, too, but I don’t want my daughter to ever pull a Tim Treadwell and try to move in with them in the Alaskan Bush.

IMG_1959 - Version 4

Inventive Version: The mrchmalo is eume.

Reality Version: The marshmallow is yummy.

Comments: Whether it’s a marshmallow or a “mrchmalo”, it tastes pretty good in a mug of hot chocolate.

IMG_1959 - Version 5

Inventive Version: i can bildsnowman.

Reality Version: I can build a snowman.

Comments: And I thought John Travolta messed up good when he called “Frozen” songstress Idina Menzel “Adele Nazeem” at the Oscars a year ago.

Well, whatever it takes. I tink Maddo’s furs spileng be iz gusst a ear a whey.

[Translation: I think Maddo’s first spelling bee is just a year away.]

[Translation: I think Maddo’s first spelling bee is just a year away.]


  1. I loved this. I have girls close to this age. If yours wants to write the ransom noted I’m sure they’ll do the dirty work.
    Very funny!


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