Before I get to today’s word, I just want to recap one of the previous words I have written about: irenic. Irenic means peaceful or promoting peace, remember?
Good. Because that word can easily be used at the same time that you use today’s word.
Now on to the new word of the day.
A while back, I saw a poster advertising a play that was titled “The Grand Kerfuffle.”
What on earth is a kerfuffle?
This set me scurrying to the dictionary!
Kerfuffle (ker-fuh-full) is a noun that means a fuss, a commotion, a disturbance, a disorderly outburst, or tumult.
How many times do children make a fuss or commotion or disturbance? Like a million times a day — or at least that’s what mothers feel like sometimes.
“Mommy, Johnny hit me!”
“Mommy, Suzie took my doll away from me!”
“Mommy, David said that I was stupid!”
“Mommy, Jill took my yellow crayon. I had it first!
And then the kids commence fighting.
While we all wish that our grandchildren were perfect, they will fight, argue, or be mean to each other — especially with their siblings. That is normal. That is what kids do. Le sigh, as the French would say . . .
And that is a perfect time to teach them this word!
“What’s all this kerfuffle about, my dearie dears?” you might say in a sugary sweet voice.
You could then ask them if they know what that word meant and then teach it to them. Have them say the word. See if they can say it 5 times without making a mistake, in a high-pitched voice, really fast, or really slow.
The ideas is that by having them say the word in different ways they get distracted from what their kerfuffle was all about and might even get them giggling. Repeating it also gets it into their memory.
Once you’ve explained the word, you can use it any time that they are fighting. Not only would this help them increase their vocabulary, it would stop all of their commotion.
Now to bring in the word irenic. (Remember it means peaceful or promoting peace?) This would be a good time to remind them to be irenic!
Kerfuffle and irenic. Two great words to teach your grandchildren!