You Say Tomato..

Is it wrong to purposely not correct your child’s pronunciation when their version of the word is SO cute. Having kids in Kindergarten and First Grade, I absolutely understand the importance of pronunciation. Sounding out words is particularly impossible when you pronounce vanilla, “a-nill-uh”. However, instead of correcting my one year old when he calls water, “wah-doo”, I encourage it by adopting his version of the word. For that matter, the entire family has started calling water, “wah-doo”(my one year old has us well trained). Experts say that when your child mispronounces a word, you should positively reinforce it with the correct word. For example:

Jordan (My 1 year old): I want wahdoo! (picture a mini tyrant ((minus mustache)), demanding water with furrowed eyebrows)

Mom: I will give you some water.

The result of this interaction supposedly teaches your kid to properly pronounce the word. I absolutely will not be doing this. Aside from the fact that mini tyrants in my house are made to say please and thank you before getting anything (regardless of age), “wah-doo” sounds way cuter than water (and slightly more sophisticated than wah wah. My baby’s got class.) Why would I want to “fix” it?

Kids grow up at light speed (effectively making us parents age faster than our peers), I see no harm in holding on to words that remind you that no matter how big they get, they will always be your baby.
What words do your kids mispronounce? Do you plan on correcting them?

11 comments:

Susan Fobes said...

I don't see the harm in that. I only started "correcting" when my kids were in pre-school and their pronounciation is fine now...

Anonymous said...

I wanna hear him, send me a video please! Your Mom

Anonymous said...

Like when justice says " what today is it?" Instead of what day is today? I love it.

Christine said...

I'm with you.... My 3 year old says "Neck a you" instead of next to you. He also says "glassable" instead of breakable. They are both so adorable when he says it, everyone in my family now says it his way!

You are right they grow up so fast that I like to enjoy these little things while they last.

MisAdventuresofMomof3 said...

My daughter says wahda goddles (water goggles). I tried to correct and my husband told me not to! He insisted she won't go to college mispronouncing water or goggles. But instead wanted to savour the moment. It is cute.

I have to say now that she can say it correctly, I'm sad I was quick to correct. But it will forever live in my memory. Right now she says, "T(her brother), me and I are going out to play. Very cute. I just smile and savour.

prashant said...

Like when justice says " what today is it?" Instead of what day is today? I love it.

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Belovedgoddess said...

I do like cute mispronunciations coming out of toddlers but there comes a time when it's no longer cute or when no-one else knows what they are saying. They get so frustrated trying to get what they want across.

My daughter used to say Merry Tisma and it's Tisma time etc. She couldn't work out how to pronounce Christmas, ended up having to break the word down into sections. She would wish people a Merry Chru ist mas as if it were seperate words until I started to tell her to say it quickly. She is now 17 and can say the word Christmas, I know she would have picked it up on her own but got sick of the "have you had her hearing checked" or "she mustn't be normal" comments. Those must be why she doesn't talk much these days - especially not around the people who made those comments.

Anonymous said...

My niece used to say things like - "Remember what we did yesternight?" This is actually a perfectly legitimate word in my view - if yesterday is ok, why not yesternight or yestermorning?

Another one always said "churkey" instead of turkey - and we still have churkey for Thanksgiving, much to her 16-year-old chagrin.

sanjeet said...

They are both so adorable when he says it, everyone in my family now says it his way!

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John Taylor said...

Love your take on this, especially when their pronunciation is so darn cute. Was just chatting about it yesterday with my cousin, her kid seems to add extra letters to some words. And then again, his uncle was challenging him to say "excuse me" at a restaurant -- "hey if you say it right you'll get a glass of Pepsi". The kid tried, in 3 tries he got it -- yep, with cut pronunciation.
John Taylor,
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The Empress said...

I personally hate to change their pronounciation.

My youngest still says "life headed " for when he feels dizzy rather than light headed.

I just love it. I let him.