EFRU Dictionaries - Opinions please

Including using "English From The Roots Up," "God & the History of Art," & Composer Studies
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hollyjay
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EFRU Dictionaries - Opinions please

Unread post by hollyjay » Wed Aug 23, 2006 12:11 am

What dictionary do you like?
Tina wrote:Hi: Well this might be a silly question..........we do have a dictionary, but it is falling apart. I am looking for one for my 5th and 3rd grader. Anyone have a recommendation of a dictionary that you like for your kids? I know we will be using it with English from the Roots Up. What dictionary do you like? (I feel like such a............teacher!)
We use The American Heritage Student Dictionary. It's kid-friendly, but more thorough than a children's dictionary. My girls (who were 6th and 3rd last year) used and preferred that when looking up the words for English from the Roots Up. We also have a children's dictionary, but the girls became frustrated with it when trying to use it with English from the Roots Up because it just didn't have the words in it!

My high schooler prefers the full Webster's dictionary though - both the modern one and the 1828 one.

Yes, I know, we have too many dictionaries in our house!
Holly Isaac,
wife of Jason (20 yrs),
mom of Allison (17), Kirsten (14) & Heather (12)

Homeschooling with MFW since 2004. We've used ECC through 1850-Mod Times.

Julie in MN
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Re: What dictionary do you like?

Unread post by Julie in MN » Wed Aug 23, 2006 12:20 am

Tina,
I am biased towards Merriam-Webster adult dictionaries, when you are ready for something like that (Collegiate, etc.). Here's why:

1. I was a transcriptionist for 20 years & other dictionaries never had the words I wanted to look up.
One way to research dictionaries is to keep a running list of new/odd words from literature & history & such. Then go to a bookstore and look up those words in various dictionaries. If a dictionary does not have them in there, then it is not going to be all that helpful to you!

2. My Merriam-Webster adult dictionaries include word origins. It helps sort out the meanings & make them stick in my mind (& helps with vocabulary roots too!). Many other dictionaries no longer include word origins. [editor's note: see 1/09 post below for clarification on this]

3. The Spelling Power author points out that Merriam-Webster is the only "true" Webster out there. Most any publisher can use (purchase?) the "Webster" name as a sort of generic name, but the original source that was founded by Noah Webster and has made a business of studying words for decades is only under "Merriam-Webster."



Now, I don't have such strong feelings about elementary dictionaries.

We have the M-W "Intermediate" dictionary and it has fewer word origins [they are in brackets at the end of some definitions]. But I like having an intermediate dictionary on hand. Some definitions are the same as the adult definitions. But some of the definitions are much easier to understand. After all, kids don't need another dictionary... just to read a definition in a dictionary...

Instead of the M-W "Elementary" version, we have a Scholastic one with lots of illustrations - I don't think a long history of word research is as important at this level :o)

The new "Primary" Merriam-Webster is illustrated by Ruth Heller, who writes those wonderful grammar picture books, and I have thought it would be fun to own but I have no little ones to teach :o)

Okay, this was probably more than most people care to discuss about dictionaries...
Julie
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Linda, TX
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Re: What dictionary do you like?

Unread post by Linda, TX » Wed Aug 23, 2006 8:22 am

I was going to post a question about the dictionary-I get up and look at the board and here is my answer already--without me having to ask. Thanks !!

We like the 1828 version but it is not working with English from the roots up since words like "dinosaur" were not coined yet.

By the way, we are on week 2 of CTG and as usual "I" am learning a lot about Creation from God's perspective. My dd loovveedd the Sabbath feast so I suspect we will do it again before the year is over.
Daughter Dallas (1997) and son Steve (1986)

firewarrior
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Re: What dictionary do you like?

Unread post by firewarrior » Wed Aug 23, 2006 10:20 pm

I like the Bob Jones University version for homeschool children.

BJU Dictionary

It is Christian, which I really appreciate!!! I do not need to worry about content. It is fairly thorough and thick. Sometimes we have to get out an adult Webster Collegiate, but we always try the BJU one first.

HTH,
Kajsa

Tina
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Re: What dictionary do you like?

Unread post by Tina » Wed Aug 23, 2006 10:30 pm

Thanks for the help, friends.

Linda in TX, I cannot stop telling my friends and family what a Godly, biblically based curriculum this is! Doesn't it make you feel good to be teaching it!

Thanks for the ideas on dictionaries, and Julie, I know I'm not the only "booky" kind of person--its pretty sad when I visit friends and am at their bookshelf looking at what they like to read and what kind of dictionaries they like to use! LOL

Warmly,
Tina, homeschooling mother of Laura (1996), Jacob (1998) and Tucker (2003) In MO
"One of the greatest blessings of heaven is the appreciation of heaven on earth. He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose."--JIM ELLIOT

Amy in NC
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Dictionary for EFRU-- words not found

Unread post by Amy in NC » Tue Jan 20, 2009 9:49 pm

meagabby wrote:I picked up a Merriam-Webster Dictionary and Thesaurus to use for English From the Roots Up.

Should (Can) ALL of the words be found? I'm stumped with the words my dc chose from the root phobos.

Just wondering if I should try another dictionary if we are going to encounter more words that aren't listed.

Dena
My take on EFTRU dictionary day is to become familiar with finding words in the dictionary. So if your child can find where it "should" be, that should be sufficient. If I'm wrong, someone please advise. HTH

Amy
Married to ♥
Rob♥ for 18 yrs
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Completed Kx2, 1st, Adv, ECC, CTG, & RTR

Julie in MN
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Re: Dictionary for EFRU-- words not found

Unread post by Julie in MN » Wed Jan 21, 2009 10:43 pm

Hi Dena,
Well, you got my curiosity up. I didn't remember having any trouble with EFRU words, but I wasn't sure if my memory was just rusty. So, I got out my son's "phobos" card, my EFRU, and my trusty Merriam-Webster. I found that the first 4 words in EFRU are in my dictionary, but not the last 4 words. Is that what you found? Of course, my son chose words from the first 4, so that's why I don't remember a problem.

You know, a complete, unabridged dictionary is huge, so some of the words have to be taken out to create the everyday desktop dictionary. One of the categories of words that is left out is medical words. I'm guessing that 3 of the missing words (phobophobia, zoophobia, and toxikophobia) are considered obscure medical terms that the everyday public will not be searching for, so they are set aside. All are actually in my medical dictionary (Dorland's).

When I did EFRU with my older dd, I had written in extra words in the margins. I see that I added a couple more phobias & they are in the regular dictionary -- xenophobia and technophobia -- if your son wants more words :o)

I suppose the last word, Phobos, must have been pulled out for a science dictionary? Not sure why that moon isn't in Merriam-Webster. (I even looked in the geography terms and it wasn't there.)

Oh, and don't forget that there are lots of dictionaries online, including medical ones. But like Amy said, having the children search the dictionary is probably the main point of it all -- even when all you find is that the word is not listed!

But to answer your main question -- no, we didn't have a problem with finding words from EFRU in our dictionary!
Julie
Last edited by Julie in MN on Thu Jan 22, 2009 11:19 am, edited 1 time in total.
Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
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meagabby
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Re: Dictionary for EFRU-- words not found

Unread post by meagabby » Wed Jan 21, 2009 11:24 pm

Amy, that's a good point. thanks.

Julie thanks for replying. Yes, my daughter chose Phobos, phobophobia and zoophobia. And while we were standing in the mega book store trying to find zoophobia or phobos in at least one 'regular' dictionary I wasn't sure if I'd been mistaken for what kind of dictionary to look for.

We ended up buying that M-Webster and I think we'll like it.

I was a bit saddened that I didn't find the root listed in the entries-- just for the purpose of seeing it in print and how it's useful when looking up other words.

*Never thought of words being removed for specific-use dictionaries.

Has anyone seen Akeela and the Bee movie? I thought it would be neat to watch a spelling bee and understand how roots are helpful in that way.

Thanks, again.
Loving learning with MFW!

Julie in MN
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Re: Dictionary for EFRU-- words not found

Unread post by Julie in MN » Thu Jan 22, 2009 12:39 am

meagabby wrote:I was a bit saddened that I didn't find the root listed in the entries-- just for the purpose of seeing it in print and how it's useful when looking up other words.
The root isn't listed under every single "phobia" entry, but it is in there under the suffix "-phobia."

It's a little easier for kids to spot the Greek/Latin root info when it's at the *beginning* of words. (For example, lots of words begin with the root "photo.") Just go to the very first word that begins that way and usually that entry will have all the root info.
meagabby wrote:*Never thought of words being removed for specific-use dictionaries.
Well, I just know this from being a medical transcriptionist in the past :o) The desktop dictionaries had fewer and fewer medical terms in them over the years. I suppose maybe a side benefit was that "medical dictionaries" are better at keeping up with the newest medical terms?

There are so many kinds of dictionaries -- some even specialize in word roots (etymological dictionaries). Of course, an unabridged dictionary has the most but it's quite heavy!
Julie
Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
(http://www.CaringBridge.org/visit/ShaneHansell)
Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
Alexandra (29) mother; hs from 10th grade (2002)
Travis (32) engineer; never hs

wifeof1mom25
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Children's dictionaries

Unread post by wifeof1mom25 » Sun Mar 29, 2009 9:23 pm

Hi! Just a note...if you're going to do English from the Roots Up -- don't get a dictionary that is too "child-friendly". Not a week goes by where at least one of the words they pick out to look up are NOT in the dictionary. Drives me nuts.

NJCheryl
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Dictionary recommendations?

Unread post by NJCheryl » Mon May 24, 2010 1:27 pm

Kelly1730 wrote:We're doing CTG this fall and while looking over the EFTRU I noticed that we'll be using the dictionary at least once a week just for the roots and most probably other times as well. Can anyone recommend a GOOD dictionary for younger users? My boys will be 9 in July and are reading fairly well but not sure they are ready for an adult type dictionary. Maybe they are, I don't know. What did your children use at this age?
We use the scholastic Children's Dictionary. It has been ok. There have been times we have tried to look up a word and it has not been in there. Then we just look it up online. Gotta love modern technology! I'm not a dictionary expert, but this has worked ok for us. We will also be doing CTG in the fall, so it will be interesting to see how it goes.

Cheryl

mgardenh
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Re: Dictionary recommendations?

Unread post by mgardenh » Mon May 24, 2010 1:33 pm

We use webster dictionary and then wikipedia.com If something is being looked up on-line I am always right there or check it out first to monitor it.
Mike
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TriciaMR
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Re: Dictionary recommendations?

Unread post by TriciaMR » Mon May 24, 2010 6:24 pm

We have a Merriam-Webster's Children's Dictionary. It's okay. I also have a Random House Collegiate Dictionary. When you look up words from the EFTRU, if they are common, you might find them in the Children's Dictionary. But, to find the roots, we had to use the college-level dictionary. And there were some roots, where we couldn't find any of the words in the Children's Dictionary.

My advice: have both on hand.

(Merriam-Webster also has an online dictionary at: http://www.merriam-webster.com/ where you're likely to get good definitions.)

-Trish
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TriciaMR
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EFTRU -- unabridged dictionary?

Unread post by TriciaMR » Fri Jun 11, 2010 6:36 pm

shawnswife wrote:Hi. I've been with MFW for several years but have not posted in a long time. I am getting ready to start EFTRU with my 5th, 3rd and 2nd graders. The author of the book says to make sure you have a good unabridged dictionary. What exactly is the difference between an unabridged dictionary and a standard dictionary and are they really necessary because the cheapest one I can find used is about $35.00. Any comments on how this is necessary or not would be greatly appreciated! Thanks!
I just used what I had - a "collegiate" level dictionary. Basically an abridged dictionary is going to give you shorter definitions, and might not show the greek/latin base of the word. My collegiate dictionary did 98% of the time, or so.

-Trish
Trish - Wife to Phil, Mom to Toni(18), Charlie(14), and Trent(14)
2014-2015 - AHL, CTG
2015-2016 - WHL, RTR
2016-2017 - EXP1850, US1877
2017-2018 - DE, 1850MOD
2018-2019 - College, AHL
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Julie in MN
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Re: EFTRU -- unabridged dictionary?

Unread post by Julie in MN » Fri Jun 11, 2010 8:59 pm

I have a very old unabridged dictionary from my grandmother. It is fun to have. But it needs its own shelf, where it lies open. It is well over 3,000 pages. It is very dusty because we use it very little.

An unabridged dictionary gives more information on words, such as more about the roots and more drawings. And it just basically has more words. For instance, mine is open to the word "mineral" and there are words like mineral tar, mineral violet, mineral water, mineral wax, mineral white, mineral wool, and more, all defined.

In an abridged, some of the major groups of words are split off into specialized dictionaries -- geographical dictionaries, medical dictionaries, and so on -- leaving out words that only specialists may need.

You can look up things online, including Webster's 1828 which is very popular in the homeschool world. Or Etymology dictionaries online, giving much historical information about words. But unless you have the money and the space, you don't really *need* to have the unabridged -- IMHO of course.

Julie
Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
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jasntas
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Re: EFTRU -- unabridged dictionary?

Unread post by jasntas » Sat Jun 12, 2010 11:14 am

sojen wrote:
Sat Jun 12, 2010 9:10 am
(totally hijacking this thread &))

My 5th grader has way outgrown our children's dictionary, but is not ready for my intense collection of collegiate dictionaries. Does anyone have a specific title of a middle of the road dictionary? We will be using EFTRU also, so something that would go along with that would be great. She gets very overwhelmed using the dictionary, but none of the words she needs are in the children's version.

Thanks!
Have you ever thought about getting an electronic dictionary? We have a Franklin's kids speaking dictionary. This one would not be good for a middle of the road dictionary but I got an inexpensive one to see if my ds would like it because he was overwhelmed with a 'paper' one. He likes it much better.

There are all kinds and all price ranges. If you think that may be an option, maybe someone else here will have a good suggestion.

Just one option.
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Julie in MN
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Re: EFTRU -- unabridged dictionary?

Unread post by Julie in MN » Sun Jun 13, 2010 11:26 am

Jen,
Not a total hijack, just a partial :-)

I like the Merriam-Webster's Intermediate dictionary because it's "almost" a collegiate but they make sure that a young person might actually *understand* the definition. Some definitions are the same as the adult, but some are shorter or clearer. It does have roots but usually you have to look for the first entry in a group or even a separate entry for that prefix, etc.

However, I think the *best* way to choose a dictionary is to make a list of the words you aren't finding in the one you have, or you aren't happy with. When that list gets long enough, go to a bookstore & look those words up.

Just a warning: Nothing will be perfect. But it sounds like you have several back-ups if needed ;)

Julie
Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
(http://www.CaringBridge.org/visit/ShaneHansell)
Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
Alexandra (29) mother; hs from 10th grade (2002)
Travis (32) engineer; never hs

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