10-second review: Base the teaching of grammar on problems that can be predictably expected in compositions. These problems involve sentence structure, punctuation and usage. Composition should be taught at the same time as grammar so that students can apply their knowledge of grammar to their compositions. The purpose for a knowledge of grammar in composition? To polish writing.
Title: “Grammar and Composition.” Teaching English, How To…. Raymond Stopper. Xlibris, 2004. pp. 164-206.
Teaching Problem-Centered Grammar in the First Ten Minutes of Class (2).
Textbook as Reference.
Simply labeling a students’ compositions with grammatical mistakes does not help them to find and correct the mistake, using their textbooks. When I label mistakes in major compositions, I use the label as it is found in the index. This helps students to become familiar with the textbook as a reference.
On the board, I write a sentence with a mistake. Next to it, I label the problem as it appears in the index of the grammar textbook. Students are, in ten minutes, to look up the mistake from the index, read the examples of how to correct it, and then make the correction. Again, I award an extra point for the students’ written correction.
Mistake: “The team both felt the joy of victory and the sting of defeat.” (Completed Parallelism)
Corrected: The team felt both the joy of victory and the sting of defeat.”
The label in the parentheses is the label in the index, pointing students to where to find the correction. The given sentence is different, and usually much more difficult, from the examples in the textbook.
If students can find and correct the mistake without resorting to the text, they are awarded the extra point.
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