teaching grammar

Kate Brubeck on breathing life into language

The first day of Fundamentals of Grammar for Academic Writers has met. No chalk in our room (or any others on the same floor). No administrative assistant in the office to get some from. And a pedant in the front row trying to engage me in discourse about the display of well-worn style manuals, which he has fanned before him like certificates of pedigree. (“I write reviews,” he tells me, “for Amazon.”)

But, all things considered, the day has gone well.

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Ebony Haywood on her own grammar journey

I teach ninth grade English at Dominguez High School in Compton, California. In June, I completed my first year as an English teacher, and it was no small feat. Prior to my English gig, I taught music for nine years. The leap from music to English, from elective to compulsory, frightened me. My fear morphed to frustration as I tried teaching my students how to write. I didn’t know how to help them improve their writing. Then the rookie English teacher gods knocked some sense into my head and said, “Ebony, you have to teach them grammar—explicitly.”

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