Showing posts with label Words of the World. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Words of the World. Show all posts

Saturday, September 15, 2018

Why We Say "OK" - And Other Lessons on the Origins of Words

A few days ago Vox published a short video that explains the origins of "OK" and how it came to be something that we say, read, and click everyday. By watching the video you can learn where OK originated and the roles of a presidential campaign, the telegraph, and railroads in spreading the use of "OK" until it became commonplace to say it. The video also teaches viewers why some businesses use "K" to replace "C" in product names.


Vox's video about "OK" reminded me Words of the WorldWords of the World is a collection of videos featuring historians and linguists explaining the origins of and history of the use of words in the English language. The videos attempt to put the words into a somewhat modern context. For example this video about the word "guerrilla" makes reference to Che Guevara. The video I've embedded below explains the word "coup."



Applications for Education
Words of the World could be an instructive model for your own lesson combining history and language arts. Have your students pick a word or two that they think is common and research it. Then have them create their own short videos in which they explain the history of those words. You might even have them research the dialect of the areas in which they live. For example, where I live we have a Range Pond. Most people would pronounce that as range, like "home on the range" yet everyone around here pronounces it as rang as in "the bell rang."  I'm not sure why that is the case, but I would love to find out.

H/T to Open Culture for the Vox video. 

Monday, April 17, 2017

Words of the World - Learn the Origin of Words

Words of the World is another excellent set of videos from the same people that brought us the popular Periodic Table of VideosWords of the World is a collection of videos featuring historians and linguists explaining the origins of and history of the use of words in the English language. The videos attempt to put the words into a somewhat modern context. For example this video about the word "guerrilla" makes reference to Che Guevara. The video I've embedded below explains the word "coup."


Applications for Education
Words of the World could be an instructive model for your own lesson combining history and language arts. Have your students pick a word or two that they think is common and research it. Then have them create their own short videos in which they explain the history of those words. You might even have them research the dialect of the areas in which they live. For example, where I live we have a Range Pond. Most people would pronounce that as range, like "home on the range" yet everyone around here pronounces it as rang as in "the bell rang."  I'm not sure why that is the case, but I would love to find out.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Mysteries of Vernacular Explains Nuances of English

Mysteries of Vernacular is an interesting site that is developing a series of videos about the history and nuances of the English language. The concept is similar to that of Words of the World. Mysteries of Vernacular will eventually have one video for every letter of the alphabet. For now there is just a few videos available.

Applications for Education
Much like the idea I shared in my review of Words of the World, Mysteries of Vernacular could be an instructive model for your own lesson combining history and language arts. Have your students pick a word or two that they think is common and research it. Then have them create their own short videos in which they explain the history of those words. You might even have them research the dialect of the areas in which they live.


Mysteries of Vernacular: Clue from Myriapod Productions on Vimeo.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Words of the World - The Origins of Words

Words of the World is another great series of videos from the University of Nottingham (they also brought us the Periodic Table of Videos and Foodskey - The Science of Food). Words of the World is a collection of videos featuring historians and linguists explaining the origins of and history of the use of words in the English language. The videos attempt to put the words into a somewhat modern context. For example this video about the word guerrilla makes reference to Che Guevara. The sample I've embedded below explains the history of the word California.


Applications for Education
Words of the World could be an instructive model for your own lesson combining history and language arts. Have your students pick a word or two that they think is common and research it. Then have them create their own short videos in which they explain the history of those words. You might even have them research the dialect of the areas in which they live. For example, where I live we have Streaked Mountain. Most people would pronounce that as streaked yet everyone around here pronounces it as streak - ed. I'm not sure why that is the case, but I would love to find out.