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Students need to learn euphemism, or the “pretty” language used to cover up something taboo within a culture. Begin the discussion asking about this “pretty language,” and students will often be able to come up with examples, like the words for “toilet.” Students should learn “toilet” is not said in American culture although it is widely used to describe public facilities elsewhere. “Bathroom,” itself a euphemism, is also usually too blunt, and terms like “restroom,” “men’s room,” and “ladies’ room” are more acceptable. Often the more taboo something is, the more euphemisms there are for it.
Students find discussion about euphemism and the different words we use and why highly engaging, and the information is necessary for them to function successfully in society.