It's Grammar Time!
Are grumbles all you hear when teaching grammar? Try a fresh approach -- a few new "hooks" your students will remember -- and check out a bunch of grammar sites on the Internet that will placate even the loudest grammar grumblers!
Grammar! Can't live with it; can't live without it.
As an English teacher in a middle school, it is incumbent on me to teach that most dreaded of subjects. But I've found that there ARE ways to make it a little less odious.
Trying to humanize grammar as much as possible, I give students "hooks" to help them remember the rules. Let me share a few with you.
In my teaching, I try to use visual aids or tell stories humanizing grammar, trying to make learning it enjoyable. Zipping through the concepts, I try not to spend any more time than I have to, but still cover all the concepts that need to be covered.
WHICH GRAMMAR SKILLS ARE EMPHASIZED ON STANDARDIZED TESTS?
I also review standardized tests my students will be taking in high school: the SAT and ACT College Board Exams, the PSAT National Merit Scholarship Exam, and English SAT Achievement tests, to get an idea of what grammar skills my students will be expected to know well by the time they finish high school. Those are the concepts I most emphasize.
Regardless of the exam, I've found that skill in English is essential.
When I reviewed those tests, I found that several concepts were emphasized more than others. The concepts I found emphasized most often were:
As the school year goes on, I emphasize to the students when I think a grammar or rhetorical concept is really important and when it is one students need to know. I take my job very seriously. Whether it be through cajolery or storytelling, I try to get across to my students essential concepts. Just as middle school teachers are influenced by how much or how little the teachers our students had before us taught, so too must we be concerned with what skills our students need to know in order to do well in the classes they have after us. Middle school teachers cannot teach in isolation.
GRAMMAR ON THE WEB!
If you and your students are hooked up to the Internet, you'll have access to dozens of Web sites that focus on grammar! Be sure to check out some of these sites:
Article by Glori Chaika
Copyright © Education World