What’s Wrong With a Dictionary?

What’s Wrong With a Dictionary?

via Daily Prompt: Perplexed


As I am apt to do, I recently shared a photo with my class of something cool that happened at my home.

To my shock and dismay, two of the students paid no attention to the awesomeness I was trying to show them and were fixated on the idea that I have a dictionary lying around on my counter. The dictionary was in the background of my photo and clearly not the focus, but the class discussion quickly shifted to my frequent use of a dictionary.

What’s wrong with a dictionary?

“Oh, it’s just because you’re a teacher,” they said.

“Just look it up on your phone,” was another’s contribution to the discussion.

“I am too stupid to use a dictionary,” was the statement that broke my educational camel back.


No one is too stupid to use a dictionary (or any other education tool for that matter!)

I reminded my students that they are in COLLEGE now. They surely must possess some intelligence and understanding of how to use the resources that are available. We went on to identify times in their lives when they sought knowledge and successfully found what they needed to gain that information. If nothing else, it was a lesson in self-esteem.

In our daily lives, we often forget about the resources that are there for us. So many free and willing tools stand at the ready to serve. Our independent spirits and stubbornness inhibit us from making sound use of those tools. 

Dictionaries, thesauruses, encyclopedias, textbooks, song books, poetry books, self-help books, the Bible; these are all there for us. In addition there are human resources whose sole purpose is to serve others. Teachers, librarians, ministers, priests, sisters, doctors, therapists, friends, and family members are here to help. You simply have to ask.

Do not let your stubbornness or independence prevent you from getting what you need. Open your heart and mind to the knowledge and care that is available to you. Put energy into seeking out the answers that fulfill your soul, complete unfinished business, or bring healing to hurt that lingers in you.

When you intend to grow from what you learn and make a conscious effort to use the tools available to you, you are fulfilling your role in life. You are strong enough, smart enough, and loved enough. Go grab that proverbial dictionary and find the meaning of what it is to grow in love and life.

By: Melanie A. Peters

P.S. Intentergy is not in the dictionary yet, but I’m working on it.



4 thoughts on “What’s Wrong With a Dictionary?

  1. “Look it up!” has turned into “Google it!” But that is still searching. Perhaps on the Smart phone is finger-tip knowledge that we old-uns are not yet quite accustomed to–yet. But how much power at our fingertips! Don’t get me started on Wikipedia. I am a contributor, in dollars and in words. What a tool that has turned into. “Caution! Careful!” I told my students, but “Use it.” I don’t think they are lazy. They just don’t want to pick up a book, or underline, or take notes. Somehow we have to instill in them the joy and pleasure of doing research, of searching. The “Ugh!” part, of course, is writing the paper or the dissertation or thesis. Ugh!

    Liked by 1 person

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