Investigating grammar – 4 secret weapons and 1 map.

So it turns out from asking around at school and trying some co-planning recently, that the hardest thing about co-planning grammar teaching is knowing enough yourself / selves.

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Here are four not really so secret but selected grammar weapons to combat the trickiness of knowing how to do the stuff to start with and one bit of training which maps out how to plan to teach grammar as an investigation of texts :

1. http://www.cybergrammar.co.uk/ – designed by the folks who invented Grammar for Writing schemes of work, Debra Myhill & Co.  Explicitly aimed at improving teachers’ understanding by self-testing, mini-tutorials and practice.

2. http://theoatmeal.com/tag/grammar – might need some rudeness radar if you intend to use it in class. Posters which make grammar and punctuation errors make sense. Thanks to Isobel Condon of Habs Girls for first pointing out this one.

3. http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0333515064?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o02_s00 – Palgrave brought this out for students of Linguistics at A-level mainly. It provides a framework for analysing texts and language use generally from a grammatical perspective. Once this penny’s dropped, it will never undrop.

4. http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/071368187X?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00Commas are for clauses, not pauses. Yep, this is the key to understanding sentence structure. And yep, that means you need to know what a clause is. Fortunately Gordon Jarvie knows this and has had a good shot at explaining.

* And finally, Subject Collaboration Grammar, some training I recently gave on planning grammar teaching across the curriculum. I’d be interested to know what would help you get started teaching grammar investigativly. Please do let me know in the below poll.

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