We had an interesting conversation in my high school creative writing class this week. One of the students started a sentence with and, and, of course, the more grammarly types thought that he should not.
Being the kind of teacher who does not like to let any potential lesson pass, I delved in. That is what I would like to “teach” here today–but first let’s go back to those earlier lessons on compound sentences and comma use–and, of course, what a coordinating conjunction is to begin with.
The who/whom question is a tricky one. Out of all “pronouns” (some grammarians call who/whom pronouns; some call them subordinators; some call them…who knows…grammar is so subjective!)…anyway, out of all pronouns, who/whom is the trickiest to use correctly because it simply doesn’t sound as “wrong.” (We all know that you don’t say “Her is coming over later!”) Stick with Language Lady—and I’ll give you a tip for every usage problem you encounter (okay, maybe not every one…but I’ll sure try!)
Part of it sounds easy:
Teaching writing is not for the faint of heart! It is the most subjective “subject” in school—and, consequently, can be one of the most challenging to teach. Oftentimes, materials designed to teach writing are more writing idea than writing instruction. They leave the student (and the teacher!) wondering exactly what to do to complete the writing prompt. This is one reason that after I write a book (one hundred in all!), test, test, and retest the book with real (or virtual starting this fall!) students to be sure that all of the steps are included and clear. Last week I shared a lesson from one of my books that I did with a mixed live/virtual class about writing from a given source. This week I’d love to give you another peek into my online writing classes for the fall with another cooperative “guinea pig” group!
Writing class is often the most difficult class for teachers—homeschoolers and brick and mortar schoolers alike. Oftentimes, a teacher has not had much writing experience herself to draw from. (Perhaps her writing classes were lacking in school, and she hasn’t had reason to write much in her adulthood.) Many writing programs are vague and more idea-based than step-by-step-based. You have probably heard me talk on here about how I overcame these obstacles in my writing curricula by utilizing my Directed Writing Approach. This Directed Writing Approach has churned out several *perfect* scores on the verbal SAT/ACT! And…this approach carries over into my writing checklist for students, known as the Checklist Challenge.
The capitalization of this holiday isn’t the grammar/writing issue. It’s the spelling!
Of course, like any other holiday, both words are capitalized:
Or if written with the informal name: July 4th.
Summer is here and the livin’ is easy. Or something like that.
And there’s a lot of truth to it. My husband and I were just talking last night about how one of our favorite things is going to concerts and movies (mostly with our kids!) in the summer because it feels so easy. Sitting in my lawn chair at an outdoor concert just listening to old 50’s and 60’s tunes (some of our favorite swing music!) just makes me feel relaxed. Like I don’t have anything to do, so just sit there. (I have a LOT of trouble sitting….unless I’m doing!)