Your Spelling Mistakes

You’re Your spelling mistakes

There are certain words that I regularly spell incorrectlyand I’m sure that all of us have blind spots with some spellings.

Also, sometimes it is more than the spelling, it is about understanding the meaning of the word in context.

The incorrect use of you’re in the title is a word I often see misused and by some very intelligent people, so obviously spelling has nothing to do with intelligence.

Why should we assume that the two are linked and why should spelling be an accurate indicator of a person’s abilities?

Some people believe that an inability to spell means you can’t communicate effectively.

The problem is that English spelling rules are all over the place. 

And there are so many other rules in the English language, and we all know that rules are made to be broken!

Spell-checkers are marvellous inventions, as long as you only slightly misspell the word. If you’re spelling error is completely wrong, the spell-checker may not offer a useful suggestion.

Spell-checkers also don’t notice wrong spellings of ‘their’ and ‘there’.

Also, there are boundless examples of dyslexic people who are highly intelligent yet can’t spell thus proving the idea that spelling is an important part of our intellect. .

I’d say that being able to spell is helpful, but it’s certainly not the end of the world if you make the odd mistake, as long as it doesn’t affect the outcome of what you are trying to say.

Here are words often mis-spelled, or misused:

Your – your’e; your means it belongs to you, and you’re is short for you are.

Except – accept; except means excluding, and accept means to receive something offered to you.

Emigrate – immigrate; emigrate means to leave your own country to go and live in another country permanently, whereas the immigrate means to enter and settle in a foreign country permanently.

Affect – effect; affect means to impact or change something, whereas the effect is the result of that change.

Breath – breathe; You take a breath, but you breathe out – the latter being a verb.

Assure – ensure; assure is to remove someone’s doubts, to ensure means to make sure it happens.

Compliment – complement; the first, is an expression of praise, a compliment, the second, something that contributes extra features to something else, e.g. cheese complements wine.

Advice – advise; advice is the noun, you give advice, but when you are actually giving, you advise someone (the verb).

Loose – lose; your shirt can be too loose, but then you would ask ‘how did you lose your shirt?’

Principle – principal; principle is a rule or a law, or a guide of behaviour, a principal is a headmaster of a school or college, and can also mean the original, first or most important.

Stationary – stationery; stationary is to describe something that isn’t moving or changing, and stationery is the description of office items, such as pens, envelopes, cards.

Practice – practise practice is the noun, e.g. a doctor’s practice, and practise is the verb; you have to practise your scales each day.

Spellings are often used differently in the US.

I use this as an excuse for always spelling Practice with a c, where the American’s use that spelling for both verb and noun. Having worked in Music education for over thirty years, I really should have learnt to use the correct spelling!