A Closer Look At 20 Years Of Invented Words

Words of 2024

I shared out the other day that my sixth graders were donating new words to an ongoing Crazy Collaborative Dictionary Project. The project – which began in 2005 and continues to this day — contains more than 1250 words, with new ones added each year by students. It is part of a unit on the Origin of Words.

The 20-year mark must mean something, right?

So I started to think about how to share some of the work out in a more visual way. Thus, a few charts.

First, the new home for the dictionary is here at a Google Site. It’s had many homes over the years, starting on paper, and then in Wikis, then blogs, and now Sites. We also have a folder of audio files, of students reading their words and definitions.

Dictionary TimelineI was curious about which letters had the most words so I did the counting. “S” by a longshot! “V”? Not so much. But every letter has at least some words.

Crazy Collaborative Dictionary Project 2005-2024 - 1Then, I got curious about the longest word ever submitted, and the shortest. Some years, some students try really hard to make the longest word imaginable, and then have fun trying to pronounce it for our audio files.

Overall, the project has provided a curiosity for my students and families, but also, a showcase for how language changes, and how words are created to fill a niche in strange ways (and how much this is happening more so in the age of social media, where the viral nature of things impact our language).

Peace (and Words),


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *