comprehending :: making & repairing meaning :: sentence-level ::


"[H]ands-on, engaging activities helped participants go beyond memory to apply logic and critical thinking to spelling as well as to vocabulary and syntax. Grammar points could be examined in relation to meaning units and spelling patterns. For example, when students added -ing or -ed to verb base words (e.g., chat, talk, state, exclaim), they discovered that tense and sometimes spelling changed with the added morpheme." (Bloodgood, J. W., & Pacifici, F., 2004, p. 253) 

Working Definition

There are three types of grammar likely to be encountered in education and linguistic contexts.

1) Descriptive grammar is most commonly practiced by linguists. It involves analysis of language as it is actually used by writers and speakers. It does not make claims of correct and incorrect.

2) Prescriptive grammar is more commonly used by educators and editors. It concerns the structure of language, (morphemes, syntax and occasionally semantics) as it should be used. It does prescribe correct and incorrect usage.

3) Story grammar is mostly unrelated to the previous two types of grammar. It is almost exclusively used by educators to describe the structure and elements of a story.

Within the context of this document "grammar" is used to refer to prescriptive grammar. Story grammar is broadened to include all genres, and referred to as "genre grammar." Descriptive grammar is not in the scope of this document.


© 2014, Robert Pottle
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