Many high school graduates report weak grammar skills, and they claim that they had little instruction in this area of academics. In fact, poor grammar deters many from communicating in writing, but when they do put pen to paper, mistakes can leave a negative impression. What's more, although many are cognizant of this gap of knowledge, most never find the time to master this skill. Even today, very few students experience comprehensive instruction in this area. Clearly, this is a curriculum oversight that needs to be addressed.
Why Should Students Learn Grammar?
- It offers a deep understanding and appreciation for our language.
- Excellent grammar on important documents such as a college entrance essays or job applications can reflect favorably on your candidacy.
- It gives individuals the tools to be mindful, confident writers.
- It teaches the logic behind written language.
- It will improve grades in virtually all subject areas.
- It will improve scores on college entrance exams.
Grammar Can Be Tough to Learn:
I'm the first to admit that grammar is not easy. This is true for a number of reasons:
- There are a lot of rules to learn and exceptions to master.
- The English language generated from a number of diverse languages such as Old English, Norman French and Latin. This creates complexities in the learning process as well as exceptions to rules.
- The English language changes as our society accepts new shifts in linguistic rules. American English is constantly morphing with the influence of modern twists grown from new ideas, concepts and informal words and phrases that become commonplace. For example, ending a sentence in a preposition was once considered poor grammar, however, now it is generally accepted.
- Our culture often takes shortcuts such as the use of contractions and our pronunciations change with the insertion or deletion of sounds. For example, in Britain, they spell the word color, colour.
- The American English language does not have a designated authority to clarify the "rules" behind our language, and you will find that teacher expectations are diverse and disagreement upon rules is common.
- Focus on the basics of grammar that we all agree upon.
- Use engaging activities.
- Reinforce knowledge with grammar games.
If you would like to learn more about my most recent publication, Grammar Games Galore, just click on the prior link or the image to your right.
Dr. Erica Warren is the author, illustrator and publisher of multisensory educational materials at Good Sensory Learning and Dyslexia Materials. She is also the director of Learning to Learn, in Ossining, NY. To learn more about her products and services, you can go to www.goodsensorylearning.com, www.dyslexiamaterials.com & www.learningtolearn.biz