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#SOL16. No. 29.

Dishwashing is a slice of life common to most of us, right?

Well, it was the subject of my casual reading the other day. Yes, you read right. Your eyes did not skip a line. I was reading about dishwashing. You see, I downloaded a forgotten book (read more about the book here, perhaps you should click and read so you know what’s going on). Anyway, I am having a good time browsing the pages of this old book, as it is both amusing and enlightening.

In the Appendix of Things My Mother Used to Make (1913), there is an article titled “Dish Washing Made a Pleasure.” If you have ever washed dishes, you really must read it. So, I’m sharing a snapshot below. Perhaps you can zoom in if this image is too small.

As I read, I fondly remembered images of my grandmother’s kitchen. I wonder whose kitchen you will remember as you read. Tell me in the comments, if you like. Oh, I almost forgot, I really like the last few lines! If you are from New England, you might want to share a comment.


In My Classroom
An article from the same book titled “The Proper Way to Sweep a Floor” was the subject of of my March 5th post. In that post, I suggested that the old article and a modern advertisement be used as “two texts” to compare and contrast. Well, the same can be done with this one about dishwashing.

Use the text above (1913), and use the text of this advertisement  and this site of dishwasher reviews (2015).  Compare and contrast

  • Vocabulary
    For example, compare: scouring and sand soap in 1913, ProScrub in 2015. Or sort terms based on which text they are found in. Possible terms: touch-sensitive buttons, soap suds, features, refuse (n.), control panel, large pan, sparkling clean, handle dish cloth, dishwasher, wash arms, towels, wipe, spray, boiling water, coverage, rails, stainless steel, energy-efficient, washing cycles, soap shaker, cake of sand soap, scouring 
  • Procedures for dishwashing
  • Audience
  • Author’s purpose
  • Presentation of the information

Think about these lines. How are they the same? Different?

1913: “With clean hot water, clean towels, and plenty of soap dishwashing is made easy.”
2015: “They work hard in the kitchen so you don’t have to.”

1913: “It is very little work to keep baking tins and kitchen utensils in good condition, if washed perfectly clean each time they are used.”
2015: “Concentrated cleaning means you’ll never have to presoak again.”

Think about the images created by these words. Compare or contrast them.

1913: “These bright blossoms will add to your pleasure while washing dishes.”
2015: “With unmatched craftsmanship and unique features, KitchenAid® dishwashers have everything you need to get inspired.”

1913: “If you live in New England, your sink will be in front of a window.”
2015: “Introducing the first-ever dishwasher equipped with a window.”

Slice of Life
Read more about a slicing life
and a great community of writers / educators

A special thanks to StaceyTaraDanaBetsyAnnaBethKathleen, and Deb for a place at Two Writing Teachers where teachers and others can share their stories each Tuesday throughout the year and every day during the month of March.