He went for a run
I had to go into the chicken run
He scored a run [that's how we score in cricket]
She had a run in her stocking
His nose began to run
Could you run up to the shop please?
He had the run(s) [sorry, an Australian colloquialism for diarrhoea]
Run you finger under the word
Can I take the car for a run?
The engine seems to run well.
As I shared in a previous post 'English the inventive language' (here), English is also a language that is constantly changing and expanding. I suggested in the post that word "...'play' is important for children's language and literacy development... (we) ...need to encourage creativity and inventiveness... children (need to be) encouraged to experiment and have fun with language." I love playing with words with children and they love it too - inventing words, rhyming words, using words in ambiguous ways and drawing attention to the ambiguity, using words in a different context to show how meaning can vary, using crazy sounds to make invented words and so on.
We need to immerse our children in a rich environment where language is demonstrated in all its complexity, where new words are shared, and where rhyme, rhythm and word play are encouraged. Rappers may well sing about some dark subjects at times, but the way they play with words and sound can teach us some basic lessons about language. Here is a funny example that will amuse, but will hopefully still make its point.
Australian Christiaan van Vuuren contracted tuberculosis while he was in Argentina late last year. He didn't know he had the disease until he returned to Sydney and was diagnosed and then quarantined in a hospital for 23 days. He shot the video below and posted it on YouTube while he was confined. In his words:
"I aint sick in the sense of being sick,
but sick in the sense of being sick sick"
To Sum up
- Language is constantly changing
- English is a very adaptable language
- Playing with language is a common and desirable thing to do with one's language
- Language play and inventiveness is good for children's language development, creativity, thinking ability, reading and writing
- We need to immerse our children in a language environment that is rich in spoken language, writing, reading, poetry, rhyme, music, drama, invention and creativity
'English the inventive language' (here)
'Key Themes in Children's Literature: Humour' (here)
'20 Fun Language & Thinking Games for Travellers' (here)