I have been informed that I’m far more likely to get an exchange of messages from my 14 year old grandson if I join him texting.
So I’m going back to hunt and peck writing my iPhone, and for someone who took YEARS to learn to type with all my fingers, this feels like going back to the dark ages of my youth.
Here is a humorous article on how we used to write to our grandparents.
My take is that it will still take about a week. First grandma has to know where to look for a message from you. This may take several calls from your mother to her to figure out where the messages are. Of course your mom and your grandmother will be using different devices, so nothing will be remotely in the same place.
Do not depend on spell check when you text your grandma. Some suggested substitutions may offend her. She may not even know that her text message back to you has word substitutions, so do not assume that your grandmother uses THAT sort of language either!
Your grandmother may wonder if your use of texting is ruining your chances of learning to write in the English language? No it is not, we are being reassured. Your great-grandmother used ASAP, RSVP, and BYOB back in the stone ages. XXX and OOO at the end of letters always stood for kisses and hugs. This New Yorker article explains how texting is like a game. Games have restrictions, and you have to develop a skill with it.
by David Crystal
Do young people text as much as people think? Do adults? Does texting spell the end of literacy? Is there a panic in the media? David Crystal looks at the evidence. He investigates how texting began and who uses it, why and what for. He shows how to interpret its mix of pictograms, logograms, abbreviations, symbols, and wordplay, and how it works in different languages. He explores the ways similar devices have been used in different eras and discovers that the texting system of conveying sounds and meaning goes back a long way, all the way in fact to the origins of writing – and he concludes that far from hindering literacy, texting may turn out to help it.
This is where cultures collide. The texting culture demands an instant response. There is an assumption you have nothing better to do, and that your device is on your person. So does the face-to-face culture. If someone addresses you, you should respond quickly. So I’m revising some of the “old” ways of being polite in the day of text messaging.
- When you must concentrate on someone else or or something else for the safety of both, don’t text. While this is most often applied to teens and adults when driving, this would also apply to younger children and elderly adults who simply need to watch where they are going. They may be walking. They may be on a kids’ scooter or a senior scooter.
- If it is your first text exchange, clearly identify yourself in the message, and don’t say much else until you are sure it isn’t a wrong number.
- It is rude to text behind someone’s back or when in conversation with another. People assume you are saying negative things about them when you do this, and you could lose a friend.
- Teens and parents who text each other all the time, especially when they are at college or work, are considered a little too clingy. I’m reminded of a dorm mate who called her mom after ever meal to tell her what she ate, and after every class to tell her what she had been taught. She didn’t last.
- Short messages can sound terse. Add an emoticon to show you are smiling 🙂
- Agree as a family when are texting-free times. Adults should abide by these times, too.
- Life-altering messages should be delivered face-to-face.
- Text unto others as you would have them text unto you. If it would weird you out, another would be offended, too.
- Keep in mind always that anything you say or text could wind up with others…only now days gossip spreads world wide at the speed of light.
- Your full attention is the best gift you can give to another. If a text conversation helps, then do it. But really being there is the best thing you do with someone you love.
Using Texting for Home Education
Texting for homeschooling is the best thing since sliced bread!
Know who among your friends and relatives would be willing to give you a quick tutoring lesson, and you will be stuck no longer!
If a homeschool friend is doing the same math you are, you could play a game to see who can text in the answer first.
This is a work in progress. If you have other suggestions, comment below.
Poetry in Text
“langwij” by Norman Silver
(found in David Crystal’s “Txtng the gr8 db8” page 84-85)
is hi-ly infectious
the world ova
by word of mouth
r specially vulnerable
shud b taken how langwij
symptoms include acute
& the equally serious ga-ga
if NE child
is infected with langwij
3 Tspoons of txt
& 1/2 a tablet of verse
after every meal