Tuesday, December 28, 2010


         I see that “whatever” has been declared the world’s most disliked word, but I’d like to say a good word for its reputation. In my classes, for instance, I ask the students to be considerate of their classmates’ opinions, whatever they might be. Also, if a student says she’s not sure what to say about Chapter 32 in A Tale of Two Cities, I would probably encourage her to just say whatever comes to mind. Plus, as strange as it might seem, I honestly feel that my classes are always successful learning experiences for all of us, whatever might happen in them, simply because learning of some kind or other is the continuous, everlasting business of all living things. As an English teacher, I also like the related word “wherever”, because wherever you look in a great work of literature – on any page, in any sentence – you can surely gather some gold, and wherever you are in your development as a writer and reader, there is the potential for putting together a few words of wonder and reading a sentence as well as lightning lights up a night, whatever you might think of your talents.

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