19 7 / 2011
I love history, so when my Brother Peter and his family moved to London for 4 years, I was in heaven. I visited them every Spring for several weeks, and discovered Alison Weir a wonderful historical scholar, who is an expert on the Tudors.
I’m Dyslexic and often find words I don’t know, which has nothing to do with being Dyslexic, rather it’s a result of not having a as large a vocabulary as I’d like.
I’ve always wanted to spend time learning new words, so off and on, I’d look up a word I came across whose meaning I wasn’t sure of. I don’t carry a dictionary with me, so it was more off than on. I decided to take a yellow highlighter with me to mark the word and look it up later. That too was sporadic.
This week I started reading Alison Weir’s book, The Life of Elizabeth I. Almost immediately, I came across several words I didn’t know. My husband uses Dictionary.com so I decided to check it out. I’m hooked! Not only do you find out everything about a word; you can also hear the pronounciation. Often when I use the dictionary, here’s where my Dyslexia comes in, I’ve never been able to pronounce a word by looking at how it’s broken down. So now when I hear it, and look at the break down, it makes sense. I’m learning two new things.
By the way, because I’m Dyslexic doesn’t mean I don’t love learning. When I was a child I was ashamed and thought I was mentally deficient, because reading was very difficult. In those days, I started Catholic perocial school in 1949, there was no diagnosis for Dyslexia. Children were often called “lazy” or said to be “not trying”. Believe me I was trying! I’ll always remember being extremely embarassed when one of the Nuns, who taught me, asked in front of the whole class, “Why I don’t you understand and everyone else does”. I’d raised my hand to ask a question, so I never asked her any more questions.
Reading was never fun until I was 19, and met my first husband. He was a scholar, and an avid reader. We talked about my feelings concerning reading. He said I was one of the most curious people he knew. With his encouragement, and the book list he gave me, I started my love of books and words.
I’m excited about Dictionary.com, and enjoying the new course I’ve created for myself. With luck, I’ll continue my quest to continue learning for the rest of my life.