Thursday, February 4, 2010
Get Rid of Grammar in Elementary School!
Yes, I expect to get flamed with this post. Ten years ago I suggested to a room full of educators in my district we should stop teaching cursive writing and was almost burned at the stake for my heresy. There were over 40 teachers in this meeting and the vote was me for everyone else against.
Now it is time to discuss another subject that I think needs to be done away with (at least on the elementary school level.) Grammar should not be taught as a class in our schools! We teach the same thing in 3rd grade as we do in 8th and they still don't learn it!
If we spend 25 minutes a day on parts of speech every day for 170 days a year that equals 71 hours. If we do that for six years it equals 425 hours, but how many of your 8th graders can successfully pick a noun out of a sentence? Why do we continue to teach them something they won't or can't learn?
I am not advocating allowing students to use poor grammar or conventions while writing, after all writing as a form of communication needs to have rules or the communication suffers. Obviously we cannot let this occur.
What I do say is that there is no real need to learn about nouns, verbs, or adjectives unless (and maybe not even then) they fall into two types of jobs; teaching grammar or being in a writing profession. After all, can't we require our students to make better word choices without identifying them as a specific part of speech?
Let's throw the systematic teaching of grammar out of our grade schools, it isn't needed!
Let the flames begin!