Gransnet forums

Ask a gran

home schooling... grammar

(48 Posts)
grannygranby Tue 06-Apr-21 12:13:15

what do other grans think of primary schools teaching grammar? I have seen some protests from parents (including my DIL) having to home school. Is this because the parents weren't taught grammar? I think it is a good thing and equalises the teaching in state and private schools.

ninathenana Tue 06-Apr-21 13:40:19

DD and I were amazed during home schooling at the level of grammar her 8 yr old is expected to know.
Have to confess to on occasion having to Google 😳

ninathenana Tue 06-Apr-21 13:46:17

Yes, I was taught grammar but it's a long time ago. The intricacy of past participle etc. taxes my brain.

Septimia Tue 06-Apr-21 14:54:45

I'm pretty critical about grammar having done a lot of proofreading, although I'm not an expert on all the technical terms! However, I was impressed with the standard that my 10 year old GD was expected to cope with.

welbeck Tue 06-Apr-21 15:01:21

have you seen what they have to do in school now.
terms that most adults have never heard of, not need.
why do they need to do all this.
i would have hated it. it would have put me off any learning.
we did lots of comprehension exercises, and basic grammar.
also singing, poetry, music and movement. we learnt a lot of english usage and vocabulary by hearing it, singing etc.

B9exchange Tue 06-Apr-21 15:03:04

DGC are learning all the technical terms, but still say 'me and X did such and such' and won't be corrected. They also say 'haitch' instead of 'aitch', which they must have picked up at school. I am delighted that they are learning to spell, and have speed tests on their times tables, I think a previous generation missed out on those, to their detriment.

trisher Tue 06-Apr-21 15:07:22

Most of the grammar I learned was in secondary school. Primary focussed on basic sentence construction. Some of the teaching of language in primary schools now is a little OTT. Some of it children really enjoy, using "WOW" words for example. Although I do wonder how much use they make of those words after they leave school.

Ellianne Tue 06-Apr-21 15:28:07

I think it is a good thing and equalises the teaching in state and private schools.

I'm not quite sure what comparison you are making here grannygranby? The teaching of literacy and grammar is probably of an equally good standard in both state and private primary schools. Private schools do not place greater emphasis on this one area.
It is important that by Year 6 pupils
write both creatively and correctly. I would favour
teaching which gave younger pupils the confidence to develop their independence and imagination as they go. Learning all the posh grammatical rules is useless if it inhibits learning and stifles creativity.

PaperMonster Tue 06-Apr-21 15:46:03

I’ve a year 5 daughter and the grammatical terms she learns about, I didn’t do til A Level!! She’s a writer and I find it fascinating to see the grammar she uses!

Ilovecheese Tue 06-Apr-21 15:47:59

Looks to me to be a way to drain the fun out of reading and writing for pleasure and stifle creativity.

Redhead56 Tue 06-Apr-21 15:48:44

I think it’s really important for them to learn it as soon as possible. I down loaded primary school grammar PDF for my twins granddaughters who start school this year. A parents crash revision guide dated 2014. It is simple to follow and easy enough to teach and the rules of grammar are still the same.

Tangerine Tue 06-Apr-21 16:25:15

I might not know all the technical terms for some of the grammar children are taught these days but I do think the correct use of grammar is important.

Punctuation is also, I feel, very important and I think it assists greatly when you read a block of text.

geekesse Tue 06-Apr-21 17:24:51

I would expect most people to be able at least to write in sentences and use full stops and capital letters. Since some adults can’t even be bothered with these basics, I’m not surprised that some children find the intricacies of English grammar difficult.

Doodledog Tue 06-Apr-21 17:36:23

I'm not (and never have been) a primary school teacher, but isn't it the case that the younger they start, the easier they'll find it?

I'm sure I remember parsing sentences at infant school (or it may have been juniors, but in any case I'd have been younger than 11). I probably quite enjoyed it, but I was that sort of child at that age grin. My enthusiasm was knocked out of me soon after, but that's another story. Little ones pick up language really easily, and can learn multiple languages with very different grammar systems. It can be a lot more difficult for adults, though.

I think a lot of adults are scared by the changes in terminology (fronted adverbials, anyone?) and I have no idea why that was necessary, as it makes it very difficult for anyone other than teachers to discuss grammar with children.

Chardy Thu 08-Apr-21 11:13:44

This is tested in KS2 SATs. The idea that 10yr olds have to be made to put fronted adverbials into personal 'creative writing' actually makes me angry.

silverlining48 Thu 08-Apr-21 11:40:50

Oh yes, fronted adverbials......had never heard of them and have already firgotten what they are.

Baggs Thu 08-Apr-21 11:51:28

No pleasing some people. After a generation of moaning about schoolkids not learning grammar, they are now taught it and people are still moaning.

That said, I don't think kids (or adults) need to know the formal names of grammatical structures and uses to be good at getting grammar right in their speech and writing.

Baggs Thu 08-Apr-21 11:52:33

In other words: you can know your grammar without knowing grammatical names/labels for things.

trisher Thu 08-Apr-21 12:57:30

Chardy

This is tested in KS2 SATs. The idea that 10yr olds have to be made to put fronted adverbials into personal 'creative writing' actually makes me angry.

In my experience they aren't really "made" to do this. The idea is introduced to them along with pieces of text where it is used. It is then suggested as a way of improving their writing and getting more marks in SATs. Some of them get very enthusiastic aboout it.

Chardy Thu 08-Apr-21 13:15:47

trisher I have heard of pieces of writing bring critiqued as containing 'no fronted adverbials'. What I didn't know was this was meant to start after the KS1 SATs in Y2 (aged 7)
michaelrosenblog.blogspot.com/2016/03/health-alert-how-fronted-adverbial.html
I don't doubt what you're saying is good practice, but I would imagine that primary teachers can't always deliver best practice in the 10 subjects they teach, 9 of which aren't their specialisms
I'd just be happy with basics like when to use 'you and I' and when to use 'you and me'. (NB Cabinet ministers on TV) And stuff like the difference between it's and its.

Grandma70s Thu 08-Apr-21 13:27:59

Baggs

In other words: you can know your grammar without knowing grammatical names/labels for things.

Quite. I don’t think I knew many formal grammar terms, apart from basics like nouns and verbs, until I started Latin at the age of eleven.

Doodledog Thu 08-Apr-21 13:31:33

I'm not sure that I agree. I think that it is often important to be able to work out why something is wrong, or to be able to ask someone to explain it, and without the vocabulary to do so this is made much more difficult.

Welshwife Thu 08-Apr-21 13:33:10

I did formal grammar lessons when I started at Grammar school in the early 50s. We had English as in English grammar lessons and English literature which encompassed prose, poetry and drama.
In the grammar lessons besides doing parsing etc and creative writing we were taught how to write a formal letter correctly and how to sign off.
Young children who can write and spell a bit love doing formal spelling, grammar and comprehension exercises. Cloze procedures are also good for learning the differences between words such as bought and brought - often used wrongly by many adults. My own children were not taught much formal grammar or letter writing but this I was able to address at home.
Both were good free readers but up until their mid teens I often got them to read me a page of any book they were reading. That was to check more than anything pronunciation of words they had maybe not previously encountered.
I think it was grossly unfair of Gavin Williamson to say a few days ago that the behaviour of children had gone downhill with home schooling. Many parents/grandparents have done a valiant job with home learning. For some parents with younger age children it must have been a daunting task with also trying to work from home. It might be a good idea to actually praise and thank these people and save any pontificating until the schools are fully open and we can actually see what the results are.

nightowl Thu 08-Apr-21 14:01:12

My daughter who teaches GCSE and A level English tells me that her primary age child is being taught grammar at a level she was taught in the first year of her linguistics degree. She feels it has gone too far and stifles children’s enjoyment and interest in both language and literature, and she should know.

I supervised some of my grandson’s home learning during lockdown and was shocked by the number of grammatical terms he was expected to know. One piece of work included a comprehension test followed by a breakdown of words and grammatical structures he would extract from the text and develop in order to write a poem about the same subject. To be honest, this taking apart of a piece of literature in order to construct another piece of literature was stultifyingly boring and left me feeling I wouldn’t care if I never read the book it was taken from or saw anything to do with it ever again.

Bodach Thu 08-Apr-21 14:15:15

welbeck

have you seen what they have to do in school now.
terms that most adults have never heard of, not need.
why do they need to do all this.
i would have hated it. it would have put me off any learning.
we did lots of comprehension exercises, and basic grammar.
also singing, poetry, music and movement. we learnt a lot of english usage and vocabulary by hearing it, singing etc.

Did the basic grammar you learned at school include such niceties as using question marks where appropriate, and starting every sentence with a capital letter? It would seem not. Or have you decided to go your own way on these matters?