I have found that teaching the gifted and talented students has re-engaged my mind to new levels. I used to think about where words came from or who chose what word to mean what it does. But it's been a long time since I've pondered these things.
The tide is changing once again. Today I came across the word "august" in my reading and initially thought it was a mistake. Why would the author use a month of the year as an adjective? So, I looked it up and discovered this definition at dictionary.com: august, adj. inspiring reverence or admiration; of supreme dignity or grandeur; majestic
It made me wonder if whoever named the months of the year thought August was amazing. Because I’d never thought August to be that great. It’s hot. No holidays. Summer vacation draws to an end. Maybe that’s why they named it that - to try to redeem this time of the year. As I ruminate on it, over the last few years I have looked forward to August for new reasons. I've become a bit of a gardener. Most of my plants don't begin to flower and show off their majestic grandeur until August. So that could be inspiration to where the name came from. I have to be honest, I'm just musing here... not doing any research!
Then the book Wonder by RJ Polaccio came to mind. Auggie's–the main character–real name is August. His mom has homeschooled him his whole life because he was born with severe deformities. Auggie faces adversity when he goes to school for the first time as a fifth grader. But he overcomes. He does inspire admiration. His mother calls him a wonder.
Words are so much fun when you explore the meanings behind them. I like the depth of this word. What's your favorite word or a word you've learned recently?