Why you shouldn't rely on your spellchecker OR act like a stuck up know-all

I love this poem.  I don't know who originally wrote it, but I've kept it for years.  I've typed it out in big letters on a long piece of paper, and I roll up the paper into a scroll, then beat students around the head with it until they promise to check their spelling more carefully when they're typing up their work.

Eye have a spelling chequer,
It came with my Pea Sea.
It plane lee marks four my revue
Miss Steaks I can knot sea.
Eye strike the quays and type a whirred
And weight four it two say
Weather eye am write oar wrong
It tells me straight a weigh.
Eye ran this poem threw it,
Your shore real glad two no.
Its vary polished in its weigh.
My chequer tolled me sew.
A chequer is a bless thing,
It freeze yew lodes of thyme.
It helps me right all stiles of righting,
And aides me when eye rime.
Each frays come posed up on my screen
Eye trussed too bee a joule.
The chequer pours o'er every word
Two cheque sum spelling rule.

A little moral tale .....

When I was 9, I was the only person who could spell 'soliloquy' in my Junior School class.  The teacher was so impressed with me, she kept getting me up the front to write it on the board and telling everyone else off because they hadn't been able to learn it.  I was the same with 'accessory' and 'accommodation'.

But I was 34 before anyone would be friends with me.

Being able to spell isn't everything, folks.


  1. Eye, two, am a speling freek! Aye simpley must hav that pome for my stoodents! And yes, I suppose we were (intentional past tense) just as obnoxious as the mathy know-it-alls. Okay...no we weren't.

  2. Love the poem, likewise I was the class speller,
    homonym anyone! Necessarily good spellers are bottom of the food chain, law of the blackboard jungle: or should that be smartboard jungle now.

  3. Anonymous8/6/11 12:26

    I am a terrible speller, but a pretty good writer. Will you be my friend?

  4. 34? Ha!

    Who needs friends who can't spell anyway? I'd've been your friend and we could have been swots together.

  5. I'm Crayon - yes we were.

    Charlotte - unfortunately, it's now the interactive whiteboard jungle. I can't keep up.

    Anonymous Nana - I'm happy to be freinds with any good writters.

    Steve - what is your 'ha' implying? That you are surprised I even have friends now?

  6. Putt knot yore trussed inn spiel chequers.

    The saddest part about being an English major (well, apart from the salary) is that everyone expects me to know how to spell. In one meeting, my boss's boss (my great boss) asked me to spell 'obsolescence'. Oi vey Maria!

  7. Anonymous9/6/11 02:58

    I am a champion spella too, Fran. Lets have a compitishon?

    Anna May x

    ps: your blog will only let me post anonimisly these days. I'm pussled

  8. Brilliant! My bugbear ... text speak. Can't stand it. M x

  9. I could spell that word too, but since I reached the age where oestrogen goes down the plughole like quicksilver, I've found my mental spellchecker is not to be located anyhere within living memory.
    Still, seeing as I can't remember anyone's names or birthdays, any business details, or have any exciting events to mark in my diary, there's nothing much to write on paper except the shopping list...and it doesn't matter HOW you spell wine cakes and chocolate...

  10. I've given up worrying about spelling and , you may have noticed , have never been too good at punctuation . I count on my fingers and wouldn't recognise a hectare or furlong if it bit me on the bottom .
    This explains why I work with pre-schoolers , not Big Children .

  11. The Merry - that seems an unfair demand. Resign.

    Dear Pussled - I don't know why either. I can spell, but I don't understand Blogger.

    Vintage Jane - thanx 4 comment. CU l8r.

    Ted and Bunny - people keep saying this stuff about what will happen to me when my estr ... oestra ... eostru .... oh no, it's happening already!

    SmitandSon - I count on my fingers too and each time reach a different result. Do I have a problem?

  12. Brilyant poim! Hu cares abowt spelin as long as the meening is thare?

    Whiteboards are called whiteboards? I didn't think that was allowed?

  13. Excellent stuff. I am sure would have been your friend - for a small fee,

    Anna :o]

  14. But I bet kids tried to sit next to you in exams!

  15. Awesome!! My husband and I were made for each other by the fact that we are both arrogant when it comes to editing. The irony is that I write most of my posts (and comments) in a hurry and it shows :-)

  16. Anonymous10/6/11 11:57

    Well, it may not be everything but it's really handy.

    Isabelle (I wish Blogger would fix itself)

  17. I have a copy of something very similar:
    (or Poet Tree Without Mist Aches)
    I have a spelling chequer
    It came with my pea sea
    It plainly marks four my revue
    Miss steaks eye cannot sea
    Each thyme when eye have struck the quays
    I weight for it two say
    If what eye rote is wrong or rite
    It shows me strait a weigh

    As soon as a mist ache is maid
    It nose bee fore two late
    And eye can put the error rite
    No I shall find it grate

    I’ve run this poem threw it
    I’m shore yore policed to no
    It’s letter perfect in its weigh
    My chequer tolled me sew

    No idea of its origins I'm afraid. My own spelling is terrible, and, while I hate poor English and dodgy punctuation, I wouldn't admit it in case anyone started marking my blogging...

  18. Annie - you'd be surprised at what's aloud.

    Hypercryptical - and in those days I'd have paid you. It's hard to be shunned in the playground just because you can spell diarrhoea.

    Rachel - so THAT'S why ..... I took it for friendship and experienced yet MORE rejection!

    hausfrau - thanks! There must be several versions of it. Wee could awl make-up are own, shore lea?

  19. Ha ! As a mother of two dyslexic children, my whole life involves checking spellings like those ! How often I have heard this question... " MUM, how do you spell...... " I'll miss it when they fly the nest.

  20. I didn't have any friends either, even after losing the school spelling bee by adding a 't' to 'though'.


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