Mona Voelkel

Archived News

2-22-22 Celebration!


Celebrate Reduplication Day!

Recently, a member of my Structured Word Inquiry community posted about reduplication. It occurred to me that next Tuesday, February 2nd, 2022, would be the the perfect day to celebrate reduplication, something you are very familiar with even if you don’t know its official name. Reduplication occurs when a word or word element is repeated exactly or with a small change. The repeated element is called a reduplicant.

Types of Reduplications:

Rhyming Reduplication: itsy-bitsy; super-duper, hoity-toity, etc.

Exact Reduplication: bye-bye, tutu, mama

Ablaut Reduplication: ping-pong, hip-hop, seesaw

(Generally, “high” vowels precede “low” vowels; that’s why we don’t say “pong-ping or “hop-hip”)

Comparative Reduplication: “grew and grew,” “less and less,”  “more and more”

Contrastive Focus Reduplication: I am done. I’m just not done done.

Schm- Reduplication: “Rules Schm-ules”; “Fancy Schm-ancy”, “Trouble Schm-ouble”

Ways to Celebrate 2/22/22

  1. Read Double Trouble in Walla Walla by Andrew Clements which is an entertaining story and a feast of reduplication compounds! Afterwards, have them write their own story! Here’s a sample story starter: On Tuesday, I woke up without much ado. Then, sat up to find my world was two by two….”

Ask students to find examples of reduplication in books and poems. For example, Amelia Bedelia, Chicka Chicka, Boom Boom, etc.

  1. Do a Structured Word Inquiry into the word “two.” Don’t forget to start with a Word bag activity where students get the chance to decide if words like twin, twelve, twice, etc. are in the immediate family or more like cousins. Contact me at if you would like more information about investigating the fascinating word, two!
  2. Sing along with Shirley Ellis and The Name Game. Then, use your own names to sing along. There’s a Name Game Custom Lyrics generator that can be helpful! I typed up lyrics in advance for all participants so nobody feels “put on the spot.”
  3. Play Games, including jumprope and clapping games: Miss Mary Mack, Hokey Pokey, This Old Man, Fuzzy Wuzzy, etc.

Most of all, have fun and enjoy the novelty of next Tuesday, 2-22-22!


One Response

Leave a Reply