The Homeschool Minute ~ Diana Waring – Teaching Grammar

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Teaching Grammar: When, Why, and How

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Relational Homeschooling    

Diana Waring

 Dear Friends,

Hope you are enjoying the unfolding beauties of flowers, sunshine, and butterflies this month!

When it comes to today’s topic, I feel under-qualified. You see, my father was in the military, which meant that I attended a number of schools. And, somehow, they were all on different schedules when it came to grammar. The result: I learned about nouns and verbs, but little else. In fact, I did not even know what a prepositional phrase was until I learned about it in my college French class. They were all somewhat amazed when I piped up with, “Do they have this in English, too?”

So, in our homeschooling days, it was sort of like the blind leading the blind … except when my husband, the grammarian, got involved.

But, with a never-sit-still son in my home, when it came to teaching prepositions, I knew that we had to do more than look at a book. That would have been torture for him! So, I had everyone get up and ACT OUT each preposition. With a little fun music in the background, and a lot of sound effects, we each went through motions of above, below, under, through, behind, etc. When my husband walked through the door, puzzled by the hysterical shouts of laughter, I explained our “grammar” lesson for the day.

It worked. And it was fun.

But that is about the extent of my success in grammar-teaching. So, a few ideas:

  1. Check out Winston Grammar at
  2. Play with grammar using Daily Grams at
  3. ENJOY the process-don’t stress.

Remember, whatever you do, stay relational!!


P.S. The excitement is building around here as our new Experience History Through Music products get ready to launch. Check it out here.


A Few Words by Dr. Wanda C. Phillips of Easy Grammar Systems

Most think of grammar only in terms of parts of speech. It, actually, has four components: syntax, orthography, etymology, and prosody. Syntax deals with sentence structures and parts of speech. Orthography addresses sounds, syllables, and words. Etymology deals with classification, derivation, and modification of words. Prosody addresses rules for verses. Who knew that analyzing poetry in literature or writing poetry is categorized within grammar?


Parents, typically, ask when, why, and how they should teach grammar. The appropriate time for instruction and the rationale for teaching it are interrelated. You may be surprised to learn that you began teaching grammar when you first spoke to your infants. Growing into toddlers, children assimilated your language usage. Their brain synapses were busy “sparking” to embed learning. As they learned, your usage–correct or incorrect–became theirs. Plus, that usage became so engrained that it sounded right to them and to you. We teach grammar to provide tools for speaking well and for understanding how our language works.

This leads to the question of how grammar should be taught. Educators disagree. Some teach it within the context of writing; others prefer a formal approach with specific lessons. The latter are frequently proponents of Dr. Maxwell Maltz’s learning theory that credits cyclical learning for ensuring mastery understanding. Parents, obviously, choose the curriculum that reflects their beliefs.

Easy Grammar Guide for Parents
Regardless of your choice of a formal or mini-lesson approach, parents want assurance that their present usage is correct. Easy Grammar’s Guide for Parents: Improve Your Grammar in Minutes will help you determine this in minutes–in the privacy of your home. After assessing your usage, Dr. Phillips guides you in completing only lessons that you need. Easy explanations and strategies for memorable learning help readers to change their vernacular. Parents improve their usage, and children learn, too!


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