Yes, I purposefully misspelled the title of this post. Partly to be cute, but partly to harness the power of typos.
In fact, this post is thanks to GermanLover who was kind enough to point out two typos I had made on my Maßstab post. It was funny too, because in making the comment, GermanLover also made a typo before correcting it in a second comment.
Life is like a box of typos. Isn’t that what Forrost Gamp said?
All jokes aside, thanks to that post, I am now exploring ways to remember, not just how the words sound and their meanings, but how to memorize the spellings as well. This practice can be a challenge in any language, but especially in German, where the temptation is to say that we should spell things exactly the way they sound.
And that’s what I did. I spelled Maßstab as Maßtab because I assumed the ß was good enough to get the s sounds in the word rolling.
(By the way, click that ß for some Wiki-nformation about this beautiful letter and its history.)
But we still need some strategies for memorizing spellings.
Wikihow has some interesting ideas for how to Memorize Spellings for a Spelling Bee.
I like what they say, even though if you want to remember the spellings of a lot of words, it can get pretty involved.
For instance, they talk about creating phrases out of words to help remember the spellings. Thus, Maßstab could be construed as:
Mister Alberts ßat Silently Till Alex Breathed.
To remember the spelling, I would just need to say that phrase aloud and then blammo, I’d have it. To make the association even stronger in my M memory palace for German, Mister Alberts himself will be a big fat ß.
Yes, I think this is a powerful strategy.
What about you?