The other day, Boy #3 responded to a request of mine with “I can’t make no promises.” To which I returned with “You cannot make ANY promises? Oh, I think you can, and you will.” (and he did).
These double negatives have become frequent visitors to our home lately, particularly from this child. My assumption is that it is “cool” and a little “rebellious”, and, well, just plain fun to drive Mama (and Grandma) a little crazy. I believe this because “there ain’t no talking like that” in this house. DaddyFoster does not use double negatives. MamaFoster does not use double negatives, and if I ever hear the word “ain’t” I immediately remember my 3rd grade teacher saying “ain’t ain’t a word”. I’ve also been known to call friends on adding a ‘t’ to across. I can only trust he will listen to us, and over time, he will return to proper grammar.
As I fantasized about this child’s eventual perfect grasp of the English language, I wondered in what other areas this may apply, and a verse came to mind.
Proverbs 22: 6 says: Train up a child in the way he should go, even when he is old he will not depart from it (New American Standard).
How do we do this? I believe this verse is talking about modeling. This is not a “do as I say, not as I do” kind of verse. This is a “watch and learn” sort of verse. Anyone who knows how well a toddler can mimic their parents, the good and the bad, has seen this at work. If we want our children to eat well, we sit at the table and eat well with them. If we want our children to be active and not sit in front of screens all day, we must be active with them. If we want our children to be accepting to the differences we see in others, we must do likewise. We are the best examples our children have for what a person should be. Maybe we should try being the people we would like to see our children become.
Mine? I want mine to be grammatical superheroes.