BTT: National Grammar Day

March 4, 2010

Booking Through Thursday is a weekly meme.

In honor of National Grammar Day … it IS “March Fourth” after all … do you have any grammar books? Punctuation? Writing guidelines? Style books?

More importantly, have you read them?

How do you feel about grammar in general? Important? Vital? Unnecessary? Fussy?

I don’t think that I actually have any style guides or grammar books on my shelves right now. However, I might have a copy of Strunk & White’s Elements of Style in a box at my parents’ house from some required book list or another in university. I definitely haven’t read it, though, except maybe referring to it once or twice when absolutely required by my professor.

I might actually have one book about grammar, though, because I was planning on using it for teaching writing skills to my high school students through funny examples. I don’t remember what it is off the top of my head, though.

At one point, I was actually starting to create “units” or lesson plans using Grammar Girl‘s Quick & Dirty Tips for Better Writing. (This was before she started releasing CDs and books based on the podcast’s success.)

I haven’t actually gotten a chance to use them with my students, though, largely because up until this point, I’ve been teaching kids that don’t have high enough literacy skills to even access the language of the podcast or the writing skills book.

As for grammar in general, I’m usually fairly fussy. I don’t expect people to have perfect grammar, and I don’t expect it to be used all the time – for example, I give lots of leeway in text messages, IM conversations, etc. However, I do think that it makes someone sound rather unintelligent if they’re constantly misusing grammatical structures (or not using them at all.) It’s one of those things where you can tell if someone has decent grammar or not even if they’re not using it all the time – because you can tell when someone is breaking a rule on purpose as opposed to breaking a rule because they simply don’t know it at all.

5 Comments

  • Michael March 4, 2010 at 10:41 am

    I have my own idiosyncrasies when it comes to “enforcing” rules of grammar.

    I will (hopefully) jokingly correct when someone mixes up “May” or “Can” when asking a question.

    I also think there’s a time and place for text abbreviations…for example, professional correspondence via e-mail is not such a time.

  • Lori @ Escape Between The Pages March 4, 2010 at 12:09 pm

    I don’t own any grammar books. Here’s mine.

  • reJoyce March 4, 2010 at 12:26 pm

    I also judge intelligence by grammar. Which is ironic; since I don’t think my grammar is fantastic. But I do have some pet peeves (the may or can mentioned by Michael, for example).

    I saw some Grammar Girl clips on YouTube earlier. I may check them out.

    Thanks for the comment!

  • Jennifer March 4, 2010 at 1:54 pm

    I am enjoying all the different viewpoints. Mine is here: http://www.rundpinne.com/2010/03/booking-through-thursday-grammar.html

  • Michelle March 5, 2010 at 9:28 am

    I’m one of those strange people who uses complete sentences in texts and IMs. I allow capitalization to go by the wayside when I IM, but not full sentences.

    I just think it’s important to use proper grammar as often as possible, because if we start giving too many passes for poor grammar, how is anyone going to learn?

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