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We're talking about grammar and how it is taught and learned. Do any of you know what is the most commonly accepted approach (looking for a book) to teaching grammar? What do schools use?

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Date: 2010-12-26 07:22 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I learned by learning the basic parts of speech and then learning to diagram sentences. I still remember more grammar than most people I know.

I don't know if they still have books on that. It was already "out of fashion" when I was in school, it seems.

Date: 2010-12-27 02:47 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
That was my experience too. I can't think what benefit it really is to be able to label seven kinds of pronouns. Does it make you a better writer? Do you read things unconsciously labeling them? What is the point?

Date: 2010-12-27 05:09 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
It does help me with writing, especially when my brain tries to run ahead of what my fingers can keep up with. Sometimes it just helps me scan through my mental thesaurus when I need a word, as well... but I have mental files in my head, so that's just how it works for me.
Sometimes it helps me figure out what someone is trying to say, if they are having trouble getting an idea across, if I can quickly mentally re-organize the structure of it. This makes people think I am just good at understanding everyone.It's like being able to decipher things, with grammar being the code key. (Similarly, it helps figure out context more easily, too, when reading about things with which I am not familiar.)

One of the biggest helps, honestly, is how much easier it has made studying and grasping other languages. I recently discovered that I still understand a whole lot more German than I thought I did, and much of that has to do with the fact that my English grammar mastery made picking up German grammar a breeze.

Date: 2010-12-30 01:24 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Your point about learning other languages is excellent. That is probably the most compelling reason I've heard yet to make a study of grammar at all.

Date: 2010-12-26 08:30 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I tend to side with the Universal grammar thinking. I don't think grammar is something that needs to be taught. As a child I thought they just did that to punish and confuse us! ;P Not that I have proper grammar, but I lived in a home where I pretty much raised myself and there wasn't much conversation. I think a child in a good environment doesn't need to be taught.

Date: 2010-12-30 01:23 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I agree. I think when we're around good grammar, we are able to easily recognize when something doesn't sound right, no matter if we're specifically taught.
(deleted comment)

Date: 2010-12-30 01:22 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I feel that way too. I think anyone who pays attention to what they read and hear will soak up what they need to use proper grammar.

Date: 2010-12-26 09:03 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
In high school (and into the professional world), Strunk & White is still the bible.

My friend Barbara, who has a third/fourth grader, put in her recommendation in this comment for a combined writing/LA/grammar program that they've been liking.

I'm taking the exposure through good literature osmosis approach, and will give them fun grammar books like "Eats, Shoots and Leaves" when they're a little older. Someone just told me there's a version of it for kids! I adore grammar. I was a big old pedant of an English major. I could rant about the current usage crisis of lay vs. lie all day long.

Date: 2010-12-30 01:21 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
You reminded me that I had picked up Eats, Shoots and Leaves for kids at a book sale last year. We dug it out of the basement and discovered it is pretty much just about comma usage. So, a bit disappointing. The adult version was fabulous, though.

Strunk & White is another one I need to unearth soon. Thank you for that link, more resources are a good thing!


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