Wednesday, March 02, 2005


Something we had to work on with both of my sons was the use of the current "slang". This is hard to do when you're a parent, and you're not "jiggy wid it" [my teenagers would be cringing like crazy if they heard me say this . . .]! But our Asperger's kids have such pedantic, formal language skills -- we need to practice using the current "slang" in our homes so that it becomes part of their vocabulary.

You can pick up on the "slang" that's current by watching TV, but what's commonly heard in Los Angeles or New York is probably NOT what's being said at your child's elementary school. I think that this is when you start becoming a detective -- you attend school functions, volunteer at the school, and do little things like pick up your child at school at the end of the day and arrive 15 minutes early so that you can overhear the conversations that other kids have. Of course, you try to listen in (covertly) to conversations your child may have with friends who come over, to pick up on new phrases that the kids think are cool or funny.

The point is, this kind of slang should become PART of our children's vocabulary -- not an overwhelming percentage. Sometimes Will is drawn to a certain phrase, thinking it's cool, and use that particular phrase too much. We try and remind him that any words, used too much, can become monotonous. Eventually, this kind of use of current phrases will not seem so forced, and will gradually become part of your child's vernacular.

Most of all, parents can do a lot of good if they kiddingly use the current slang at the dinner table. Joke around, use the phrases that the kids are saying -- nothing's funnier than hearing an old person say "jiggy wid it"! [p.s. -- "jiggy wid it" is very outdated, according to my teenagers! Apparently I'm not very "with it" in my phrases -- time to go listen in on more conversations!]


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