Wednesday, February 15, 2006


I typically do grammar units with my freshman because they don't recall grammar from middle school. We go over the lessons from their Writer's Inc. lessons, they take notes and put down examples. The following day we have a quiz over the material we prevously covered. The quizzes aren't that challenging, but on this last quiz they bombed. becuase of their low scores, I had them go back over the quiz rewriting the paragraphs with the correct punctuation and what rule goes with the correct mark of punctuation. It took them all hour and not many complained. They also appreciated the opportunity to make up the points. I guess the point of this post is when are they ever going to get and apply grammar? Any good ideas on teaching grammar? In the past I have had them create examples, but their examples still don't demonstrate their learned knowledge. They would basically use the same format as the book's examples and just replace words. Help!


Blogger Karl Fisch said...

No great ideas for teaching grammar, but I guess I would go back to the essential question. Why do they need to "get and apply grammar?" My hunch is that most of them don't know why it's important, so they don't have much buy in. If you can show them when, where and why it's important, then maybe you'll get a better response from them.

On the other hand, if it's not important, or if only some of the grammar you teach is important and the rest is simply "required," then maybe you need to revisit the purpose of teaching grammar and only focus on the parts that are truly important. (I'm not making a case here, just suggesting you think about it.)

11:01 AM  
Blogger Crosby said...

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8:25 PM  
Blogger Crosby said...

It was interesting to read Karl's comment about teaching the importance of grammar. I was rather blunt today with my Honors students because some had gotten very sloppy on the class blog. I told them that they should go back and read some of their last posts because some looked like they had been written by 7-year-olds. Even the newspaper contains many grammatical errors each day! I also told them that when their written products look pathetic and are impossible to read, it reduces the willingness of the reader to give credence to the ideas. If you write like a 7-year-old, I will begin to think that you also think like a 7-year-old!

8:26 PM  

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