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I think CM lied to me


GWOB
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I know, I know. Those are fighting words to some. Sorry. I am just having a hard time trusting the philosophy. Now, I am not a strict CM follower. I glean the useful (to our family) concepts and implement them in our school. I believe in the whole "living books" thing. I get that my kids should be out in nature as much as possible. Those things are working for us. Language arts is a different story.

 

At first I was torn between a more classical LA track and a gentle CM path. I ended up choosing the more gentle CM path. We do copywork, narrations, read great books, etc. I use PLL and ILL with my kids. They are memorizing poetry.

 

But my dd9 cannot pick out the nouns in a sentence:glare:.

 

I was getting a little nervous about writing. I've heard all the reports of homeschoolers lagging behind in writing. I refused to be one of THOSE homeschoolers, so I decided to use a formal writing program with dd9. We started Meaningful Composition. (BTW, it looks like a fabulous program for anyone interested.) Week one focuses on nouns. I think this is a great, easy intro to formal writing. Well, my kid cannot pick out the nouns in the sentences. She knows the definition of a noun. She can rattle off a list of common and proper nouns. Still, she was highlighting verbs as nouns. So we go over the assignment. I spent a good half hour dissecting every sentence and going over the function of the words. Today, she has essentially the same assignment- highlight the nouns in the sentences. She makes the same mistakes.

 

So now I am panicking. Am I failing my child? Am I doing her some sort of disservice by not providing a more rigorous LA course? Did CM lie to me? Or am I just being impatient?

 

Someone talk me down from the ledge before I buy five different LA programs!

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I am CMish (though I am really ME-ish!!!:D ) with my younger kids. I do use copywork exclusively through 2nd grade and to the middle of 3rd. However, copywork serves multiple functions in our homeschool. I teach grammar and mechanics initially and eventually move on to dissecting paragraphs.

 

I start with nouns, then verbs, then adjs, then advs, then move on to functions of nouns,etc. When they are ready to start analyzing paragraphs (usually 3rd grade, maybe 4th if they were delayed readers), we focus on topic sentences, supporting details, ending sentences, etc.

 

hth

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I am not even homeschooling yet, so take this with a grain of salt.

 

First, how long have you been working on the grammatical terms? It's not unusual for there to be a gap between knowing the theory and being able to actually apply it.

 

Second, can she highlight the words in the sentence that aren't nouns?

 

Rosie

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:iagree: I feel led astray by the relaxed LA approach in my early years of hsing also. I will not go back to that. I vamped up our grammar with R&S in 4th grade, now we are fully vamped up in all areas using K12 for all subjects.

 

Do what you think is best for your dd. If you feel you are short changing her, then vamp it up.

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It may just be that she is too young to be dissecting sentences. I know my second dd could not do it at 9yo. Some days it seemed like she knew what I was teaching and the next day it was gone. We went on like that for 3 VERY LONG YEARS. I decided after that I would not beat my head against a wall trying to enforce grammar in elementary. If they grasped it, great. If not, I will try again with formal grammar when they can think analytically.

 

As far as composition, oral narration builds a great foundation. I call it deceptive simplicity. It seems so simple on the surface. "Tell me what we just read about." But when you stop and think of the skills required to do that, it is complex. You have to listen intently, recognize and remember the important details, and organize and put that information into your own words so you can tell it back. Sounds like a whole lot of skills necessary for composition.

 

But it does take trust in the method because it takes time to build that strong foundation. And for some, it might not fit their comfort level.

 

BTW, I also think Meaningful Composition is a great program.

Edited by HiddenJewel
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Grammar is actually or can actually be an abstract concept. Some kids aren't ready for that stage for another year or more. So it could be she's just not ready for it. Maybe it's explained the way she can't grasp it.

 

R&S English is mastery. I'm not telling you to change, but it really works with the concept in somewhat different lingo, using naming words, words that tell where, etc. They call it several things. Some of this may be confusing in a book that's not spelled out. I'm not using what you are, because yes, it scares me, so I can't comment on how your program works. I also hate throwing out other programs until you find out where the problem lies.

 

She may need more of clear picture than something CM-ish. You can do some CM and some textbook. It's okay ;) Or, maybe she's not ready. I do urge you to check out R&S English 2 at www.milestoneministries.com under Curriculum under Grade 2 English. 3 is considerably more difficult. It would at least show you if you think she may grasp this or if it lies in your program.

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When you were doing copywork and other such CM LA things, did you point out the nouns and such in the sentences? I've seen many people just give sentences to be copied without discussing the grammar and sentence structure then lament that copywork/dictation was useless for teaching grammar and sentence structure. If you are just giving sentences to copy and not talking about them, then you are only getting hadnwriting practice. You have to bring out the grammar in the sentences.

 

I've not used PLL or ILL, so I have no idea what is in them, but I have read from the CM writings on copywork and dictation. I think it is a great way to teach writing, grammar, and punctuation, but again, you can't just trow sentences to your kids and expect them to uncover the grammar terms themselves. They will gain an appreciation for proper, written English, but you have to add to it to get a grammar lesson from it.

 

CLear as mud, eh? Now what was your question?

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It may just be that she is too young to be dissecting sentences. I know my second dd could not do it at 9yo. Some days it seemed like she knew what I was teaching and the next day it was gone. We went on like that for 3 VERY LONG YEARS. I decided after that I would not beat my head against a wall trying to enforce grammar in elementary. If they grasped it, great. If not, I will try again with formal grammar when they can think analytically.

.

 

While I agree that really in-depth analysis isn't needed at 9 yrs old, I wouldn't consider identifying nouns to be 'dissecting sentences.' I would definitely want a child of this age to be able to, at a minimum, identify nouns, verbs, adjectives and adverbs easily. Personally, I would not be comfortable waiting until middle school for this - - there's sooooo much other stuff added to the stack in the logic years, I'd hate the thought of my student struggling with parts of speech.

 

Now, I do know that some kids do just seem to suddenly and easily 'get it' at a certain age, but definitely not all of them (not a majority, ime). My dd did daily copywork and extensive, above leveling reading for YEARS with no positive affect on her spelling ability (another common claim).

 

I also think that "a noun is a naming word; it names a person, place, or thing" is simple enough for most kids to grasp. If she needs you to walk her through pages of worksheets for a week, so be it. You can buy cheap workbooks for practice.

 

It helps to start with VERY simple sentences, just nouns and action verbs to start. Sally ran. John jumped. The park is beautiful. If you have to, ask the sentence for every single word in the sentence: Is "the" a person? No. Is "the" a place? No. Is "the" a thing? No to all three, so it's not a noun. Is "park" a person? Is it a place? Yes, so it's a noun. I do this in a matter-of-fact way (for whatever subject), and if the kid is just not thinking or being attentive, the mind-numbing tedium of it usually snaps them into focus fairly quickly :D.

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Now, I am not a strict CM follower. I glean the useful (to our family) concepts and implement them in our school. I believe in the whole "living books" thing. I get that my kids should be out in nature as much as possible. Those things are working for us. Language arts is a different story.

 

At first I was torn between a more classical LA track and a gentle CM path. I ended up choosing the more gentle CM path. We do copywork, narrations, read great books

 

:iagree: I had this realization when my oldest was 1/2 through second grade, while preparing him for a standardized test. He had rarely seen a workbook page and had no critical thinking skills for how to figure out what to do. He cried over having to write an original sentence. He did not know anything about grammar or punctuation and could not identify a fragment or run-on, even after all that narration and copy work. I bought Rod and Staff 3 and got about 7 LA workbooks and started from the beginning. He is doing perfect now, but I will not make that mistake again with my youngers.

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While I agree that really in-depth analysis isn't needed at 9 yrs old, I wouldn't consider identifying nouns to be 'dissecting sentences.' I would definitely want a child of this age to be able to, at a minimum, identify nouns, verbs, adjectives and adverbs easily. Personally, I would not be comfortable waiting until middle school for this - - there's sooooo much other stuff added to the stack in the logic years, I'd hate the thought of my student struggling with parts of speech.

 

The hope is that once the student hits the logic stage he won't have to struggle because his thinking will have matured. Also, some students are not ready at that age to identify the parts of speech easily. And unless you have had one, there is no way to describe the blank looks.

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Thank you so much for the replies. You ladies have given me a lot to think about.

 

I still consider myself new to this homeschooling experiment. I pulled my dc out of ps last Thanksgiving. This is our first full year of hs. I still feel like I am stumbling around, especially in the LA department, which ironically is VERY high on my priority list.

 

Dd9 can fill out a worksheet like nobody's business. I have the masses of worksheets sent home from ps to prove it. She can write quite well. She reads a few grade levels ahead and has wonderful comprehension. She does exhibit some ability to think abstractly.

 

Originally I wanted to follow WTM. I read WTM a few years before we decided to hs. When I sat down and really thought about how dd9 learned, I felt led to a more CM path. Dd9 is very creative. I wanted to foster that love of creative writing in her. Now, I will admit all the copywork and dictation has inproved her writing, creatively speaking. She does use adequate grammar when doing a written assignment. I just really want her, and my other dc, to really know the English language inside and out. It seems as though she kinda knows HOW to use words, but she does not know WHY. I want her to understand the WHY, so when she is confronted with more complex writing, she will be able to figure it out on her own.

 

I don't even know if I am making sense. I just know I feel as though they should be doing more. I don't want to bore them to death with endless repitition, but I want them to KNOW the language.

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She's only 9. She'll get it. Not to worry.

 

I know. She is young. However, I am not a patient person. I am also slightly prone to over-reacting. I quickly went from her not picking out nouns to her being condemned to working the graveyard shift at a gas station in the ghetto due to her lack of language skills. And it would be ALL. MY. FAULT.

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I have used a mix of CM and WTM with my two dc.

 

I would say, she will get it! Hang in there. This was a struggle with my dd at that age. We tried Easy Grammar and she couldn't remember a thing from day to day. A year later, and she was much better, but only now at age 12 is she ready for a full grammar course that will stick in her head. (We're doing MCT now, and CW for reinforcement.) She reads at a high school level (is on a Dumas kick right now), and writes for fun (NaNoWriMo year 2!) with intact grammar, so reading/writing and abstract grammar abilities can really diverge.

 

It may, or may not, help to compare nouns with verbs, side by side. Some kids need to see the big picture before they can pick out the parts. Some need to do process of elimination to figure it out.

 

I really am so thankful for CM. I would not be homeschooling without her amazing insights. I think your foundation of CM in language arts will serve you well. A positive attitude (yours and hers both) will carry you through these development issues.

 

HTH

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I understand your concern and I am wondering the same things here - but I'll share what we're doing. With ds12 I started with FLL but R&S about killed us both due to his personality, so we went to English for the Thoughtful Child followed by ILL. I supplemented each year with a simple grammar workbook, and his test scores have been very high. I tried the same approach with the next two ds, but I realized one could recall nothing from FLL - after a year of reciting definitions, recalled NOTHING. So I switched them to PLL but chickened out of the CM approach halfway through the year, so switched again after a few months (poor kid!) to R&S. He still got nothing out of it, but at I realized he had done lovely writing with PLL, while he had written dull sentences with R&S but still couldn't recognize a noun if it hit him in the head.

 

After much thought I realized my goal for him needs to be that he will learn to write lovely sentences, be exposed to poetry and picture study and creative writing, and eventually, he will learn what it is all called. Because he has the ability to do the writing - just not to name it - yet. So this year my two ds9 are using the approach we used with their older brother, and using English for the Thoughtful Child. I am pulling out grammar worksheets and hoping that someday the one ds will figure it out. I will keep trying. But in the meantime, he is doing some very nice writing. I was the same way, but eventually graduated with a degree in English and worked as a writer. There is hope!

Blessings,

Aimee

mom to 6 great kids ages 6-19, schooling grades 1, 3, 3 and 6

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I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the CM philosophy but I cannot bring myself to just go with the flow for LA. I am the direct product of no grammar instruction and just write and you will get there. I am not there, i have no idea.

 

Like you say, she writes well but doesn't understand everything behind it. I am right there. My spelling is terrible! Although getting better :)

 

For my kids i want to give them all the tools, spelling, grammar instruction etc to have a full toolkit so when it comes time to actually write they will be able to pull out the big spanner and know what to do with it IYKWIM, hehehe. My DD isn't going any formal grammar right now but will be soon.

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I understand your concern and I am wondering the same things here - but I'll share what we're doing. With ds12 I started with FLL but R&S about killed us both due to his personality, so we went to English for the Thoughtful Child followed by ILL. I supplemented each year with a simple grammar workbook, and his test scores have been very high. I tried the same approach with the next two ds, but I realized one could recall nothing from FLL - after a year of reciting definitions, recalled NOTHING. So I switched them to PLL but chickened out of the CM approach halfway through the year, so switched again after a few months (poor kid!) to R&S. He still got nothing out of it, but at I realized he had done lovely writing with PLL, while he had written dull sentences with R&S but still couldn't recognize a noun if it hit him in the head.

 

After much thought I realized my goal for him needs to be that he will learn to write lovely sentences, be exposed to poetry and picture study and creative writing, and eventually, he will learn what it is all called. Because he has the ability to do the writing - just not to name it - yet. So this year my two ds9 are using the approach we used with their older brother, and using English for the Thoughtful Child. I am pulling out grammar worksheets and hoping that someday the one ds will figure it out. I will keep trying. But in the meantime, he is doing some very nice writing. I was the same way, but eventually graduated with a degree in English and worked as a writer. There is hope!

Blessings,

Aimee

mom to 6 great kids ages 6-19, schooling grades 1, 3, 3 and 6

 

We did EFTTC 2 last year as a bridge between ps and a CM method. She loved it. She does write beautiful sentences, though as you said she does not know the terms and definitions. I just don't know what to do! I hope more people respond with their experiences. Perhaps then I will get a better picture of what I want.

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I do think grammar should be covered briefly and well -- I had an "old school" grammar education in high school; I think I was in the last class to get the grammar session, as our teacher retired shortly thereafter (and I was probably the only student who enjoyed the grammar stuff). He had old mimeographed sheets he'd done up and some ancient English books (that covered useful things like phone etiquette!). I learned so much from that small body of material. I recently found my old notes, and remembered those days fondly.

 

So I agree that this is a concern, that, yes, she should know what a noun is, but maybe there is just a disconnect/delay before it sinks in to her brain. Maybe "person, place or thing" needs to be your mantra. Or you could play games of animal, vegetable, mineral? ;) Are there any fun grammar games?

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Is she studying a foreign language? I found this to be where the shift for grammar happened for me.

 

Had I not been put into an immersion program in middle school I think I would have learned very little grammar and retained even less. This was where my grammar lessons began in earnest and as a result I developed a keen editorial eye when it comes to grammar.

Edited by shukriyya
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educating in a different time period. I think we need to do more formal grammar because we aren't as proper with our speech etc. I use a combination of Shurley, CW and Climbing to Good English with my students 8-10 and they seem do be doing very well with it. Today was picking out nouns in sentences with my 8 year old. In the Climbing to Good English book he found the nouns, sorted them according to person, place or thing and then drew some pictures for them. He had fun with it and we moved on. I think, it is probably the perfect time to start some grammar. The Shurley jingles are great, but I only do their jingles and parsing. The other exercises are lacking.

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I love CM also with a mix of things. We used Rod and Staff English in the past but I became worried for the same reasons as you are...the retaining issue. We went with Winston Grammar this year and after two months of using it, I've have added Rod and Staff back. I've found that Winston Grammar makes a great supplement using the color coded cards and the Winston lessons are completed 2-3x/week in less than 10 minutes. I think it's a great reinforcement of the concepts covered in Rod and Staff English. Your child may be too young for Winston now but I know some just use the color cards and parse two to three sentences from writing each week.

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A couple of things, first I've noticed that in every grammar curriculum I've used/reviewed, each year they start with the same topics; it's like each year is a review of the last with more depth added in. This has been true in our English and Arabic materials. So what I have gleaned from that is that a child isn't expected to have perfect and permanent knowledge of something on the first go-round, and particularly for language studies there needs to be constant usage and review of concepts.

 

Second, I really like the Classical Writing curriculum for specifically this reason. In the lower levels it doesn't introduce a huge amount of grammar concepts, but has a constant review of basic concepts and getting the student to "play" with grammar. I found the poetry books particularly engaging in this regard -- "Read this short poem. Find the noun/subject, and change it to something else." My ds had a great time putting in silly nouns or inserting funny adjectives. He's playing, but he's reinforcing at the same time, kwim?

 

Is there a version of Mad Libs (isn't that what it's called) that is for younger kids? When we were doing the basic grammar terms, I had grammar flashcards ds had to review once a week, we listened (and still listen) to the grammar portion of Schoolhouse Rock daily, and we played with the language. We still have to review basic concepts sometimes, but once he's reminded he picks it up again quickly.

 

hth!

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I do have this same dilemma. I am advocate of delayed grammar. I do feel that there is some logic to it.

 

My older son picked up on grammar almost immediately. My younger son still does not get it. I agree that Mad Libs helps a lot. My older son grasps the ideas of subject and predicate. My younger son gets lost. I do a combination of classical and CM for LA. One year I will only concentrate on grammar lessons. The next year I will only concentrate on copywork and dictation. I am currently using Classical Writing for my older son. I am doing FLL for my younger son. The following year I will do flip with my sons.

 

Blessings,

Karen

http://www.homeschoolblogger.com/testimony

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What we're trying (my son is only in 1st grade) is playing games to cement grammar concepts. And someone here recently posted a link to a book called Grammar-Land that we've just started reading and love! I'll post some links of things we use.

 

Living Books

Grammar-Land by M.L. Nesbit

 

Printables

SparkleBox KS2 Grammar

 

Online Games

Crazy Libs

Clean Up Your Grammar

The Grammar Gorillas

Grammar Practice Park

 

Etc

play Mad Libs (for beginners, print out flashcards and let them pick from a stack of noun, adjectives, etc. until they are comfortable coming up with ones on their own)

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What we're trying (my son is only in 1st grade) is playing games to cement grammar concepts. And someone here recently posted a link to a book called Grammar-Land that we've just started reading and love! I'll post some links of things we use.

 

Living Books

Grammar-Land by M.L. Nesbit

 

Printables

SparkleBox KS2 Grammar

 

Online Games

Crazy Libs

Clean Up Your Grammar

The Grammar Gorillas

Grammar Practice Park

 

Etc

play Mad Libs (for beginners, print out flashcards and let them pick from a stack of noun, adjectives, etc. until they are comfortable coming up with ones on their own)

 

Thank you! These look great.

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It looks like you have a lot of great links here. I am using First Language Lessons 1/2 and love it. I don't know if it would be too young for your child. My ds6.5 can tell you a noun and pick them out fast. They also have a cd that does chants for the parts of speech.

I tried a more CM program this summer and couldn't get past the light language arts. Even though we only used it 4 months my oldest child was losing some of her language arts skills. I really think language arts (grammer) is one of those things that you have to practice and I don't think starting young is a bad thing.

People don't talk properly or write properly anymore. I had sent an email to an advisor for college when taking some online classes a few years ago. She responded to my question, but she also wrote a lengthy thank you for my writing in real words not internet lingo and for it being in proper letter form even though it was an email. I was graduating high school in the first years of internet really taking off. We were taught how to write proper email letters in keyboarding and English.

I think CM is a good approach for the time period it was written. However, in this day and age and with standardized testing, I couldn't feel comfortable waiting until 5th grade to really introduce formal grammer. I will be honest. If it were me, I would get a grammer program for about a grade younger and really work on it.

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Wendi,

 

I hear you. I started out very RB, which I think is even more relaxed than CM. My oldest started formal grammar in 4th grade and I expected it to be easy, right? She was older, so you think it will just click. Nope. It was much more challenging that I expected. We had to start over at one point. That said she did learn and is doing fine now, so take heart. You might even want to consider moving on, because I personally struggle when told just to find one part of speech. I do much better when I look at a sentence as a whole with all the parts of speech parsed.

 

With my younger kids I did buy FLL 1/2 and used the WWE sheets to have them pick out one element in the copywork sentences. This is built into the WWE workbooks, but I would often add just to make sure they are getting it. My 2nd dd (now a 4th grader) started the same program (JAG) my oldest used in 4th and so far things are going better. I too have abandoned the easy relaxed road.

 

Heather

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I don't think she lied. I don't think she expected 9 year olds to understand the working of grammar just through copywork, etc! She wrote a separate grammar book for kids to use to study so obviously she thought it took more than just exposure and copying. And remember she also was teaching the children many different foreign languages at the same time. They started off with French nursery rhymes very young and moved on to Latin, German and Italian. So they were getting language instruction galore!

 

I'll tell you when you feel lied to!!! When you painstakingly spend a year studying a grammar program only to discover your child has retained nada, nothing, zilch, zip (!) and the next year you have to start all over again and spend the first three months reviewing. I don't think kids retain the abstract principles that grammar is until they have a reason to or until they reach the point where it clicks. Playing Madlibs did help my kids immensely because it was part of a game. But I think it is when you start to study a foreign language that it really comes home.

 

I didn't read all the other posts in this thread so please forgive me if I am repeating what others have said.

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Two words come to mind:

Sentence diagramming.

 

Start with just one noun and one verb.

 

Cat naps. noun|verb = Cat|naps

 

One resource I like:

The First Whole Book of Diagrams

Elementary Diagramming Worktext

by Mary Daly

 

There are also other resources online.

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I've only read pages 1 and 4 of this thread, so forgive me if this has already been mentioned. Have you tried teaching her on the white board? My girls are very visual and doing lessons on the white board helps tremendously.... no matter the subject. If you're using ILL, you could even do a majority of those on the white board instead of on paper. That way you can talk about it *as* she's doing the lesson, and she may understand it better that way. I think this is true whether you're doing CM or traditional language arts. Sometimes it just helps to make things a bit more interactive.

 

Here's another idea which you could actually use to supplement the CM style language arts: http://www.rodandstaffbooks.com/item/129-3/?list=Rod_and_Staff_Remedial_English

 

I don't think it has to be all or nothing. A good blend is often very effective. :001_smile:

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I don't think she lied. I don't think she expected 9 year olds to understand the working of grammar just through copywork, etc! She wrote a separate grammar book for kids to use to study so obviously she thought it took more than just exposure and copying. And remember she also was teaching the children many different foreign languages at the same time. They started off with French nursery rhymes very young and moved on to Latin, German and Italian. So they were getting language instruction galore!

 

 

 

:iagree:

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Do you work with the copywork to teach grammar? If not, here's an idea:

 

introduce a noun (you can find an inexpensive teacher's book, like R&S or others mentioned and use it as your primer to give definitions and a scope and sequence for you, or use the internet)

 

Introduce sentences (subjects, predicates, simple sub, simple pred.,), then the parts of speech (verb, noun, preposition, etc).

 

Use the copy work as the sentences to mark. Choose a marking for each (circle nouns, double underline simp. pred., etc.)

 

It's not as hard for them to understand as you may think and it saves the unnecessary "extra" subject b/c you're using the same sentences.

 

If you're doing these things already, I suggest a switch.

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But my dd9 cannot pick out the nouns in a sentence:glare:.

 

I was getting a little nervous about writing. I've heard all the reports of homeschoolers lagging behind in writing. I refused to be one of THOSE homeschoolers, so I decided to use a formal writing program with dd9. We started Meaningful Composition. (BTW, it looks like a fabulous program for anyone interested.) Week one focuses on nouns. I think this is a great, easy intro to formal writing. Well, my kid cannot pick out the nouns in the sentences. She knows the definition of a noun. She can rattle off a list of common and proper nouns. Still, she was highlighting verbs as nouns. So we go over the assignment. I spent a good half hour dissecting every sentence and going over the function of the words. Today, she has essentially the same assignment- highlight the nouns in the sentences. She makes the same mistakes.

 

 

My 9 yo had 3 years of Shurley English at private school and this is her first year homeschooling. She can't pick out nouns and verbs either. She knows what they are, she can define them and knows the difference between proper and common nouns. But like your DD, she can't pick out the nouns in a sentence until I do a couple sentences with her and she has that "oh ya" moment. So as several other posters stated, it may be an age/maturity thing and not because of your CM approach.

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We did EFTTC 2 last year as a bridge between ps and a CM method. She loved it. She does write beautiful sentences, though as you said she does not know the terms and definitions. I just don't know what to do! I hope more people respond with their experiences. Perhaps then I will get a better picture of what I want.

 

Okay, I just went back and read the rest of the thread and saw this. The bolded statement is very telling to me. You know, she's only 9... she doesn't *need* to know the terms and definitions right now. If she writes beautiful sentences, then she's doing better than many other children her age. I know high schoolers and adults who can't write a decent sentence! Communicating well is ultimately the goal, and it sounds like she already does that. Grammar terms and definitions will come with time, particularly as you begin a formal writing program with her later on. Many writing programs re-teach or reinforce the grammatical term via the writing lessons... they go hand-in-hand. But for now, it sounds like she's doing fine. :)

 

Just be consistent and give it a little time. ;)

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Okay, I just went back and read the rest of the thread and saw this. The bolded statement is very telling to me. You know, she's only 9... she doesn't *need* to know the terms and definitions right now. If she writes beautiful sentences, then she's doing better than many other children her age. I know high schoolers and adults who can't write a decent sentence! Communicating well is ultimately the goal, and it sounds like she already does that. Grammar terms and definitions will come with time, particularly as you begin a formal writing program with her later on. Many writing programs re-teach or reinforce the grammatical term via the writing lessons... they go hand-in-hand. But for now, it sounds like she's doing fine. :)

 

Just be consistent and give it a little time. ;)

 

:iagree:

 

PLL/ILL don't teach formal names of parts of speech, so why would your child know them? PLL/ILL teach observation of language. They teach naming words and describing words and so forth. They also teach enjoyment of language, with observation lessons, poetry, etc. And finally, they teach "use" of language. These are the places you can spend Charlotte Mason-type time on in the early years.

 

I *have* to speak up on the side of waiting on those formal names. My ds used PLL/ILL, then All-In-One Grammar (a very simple workbook), and now we're doing MCT grammar analysis of very complex sentences and he has absolutely no more trouble than most of us adults do (i.e. some sentences are tricky and even adults disagree about some grammar issues).

 

The best things that helped him were lots of observation, discussion, and enjoyment of language. And waiting until he had "reason" or "need" to put some effort into figuring out the correct way to write a complicated sentence.

 

Whatever you teach now will have to be retaught. Nouns aren't just persons, places, or things. Verbs can function as nouns, very long phrases can function as nouns, and on it goes. I'm glad I waited until we could analyze sentences that actually need analyzing.

 

Adding another opinion to the mix,

Julie

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I don't think she lied. I don't think she expected 9 year olds to understand the working of grammar just through copywork, etc! She wrote a separate grammar book for kids to use to study so obviously she thought it took more than just exposure and copying. And remember she also was teaching the children many different foreign languages at the same time. They started off with French nursery rhymes very young and moved on to Latin, German and Italian. So they were getting language instruction galore!

 

I'll tell you when you feel lied to!!! When you painstakingly spend a year studying a grammar program only to discover your child has retained nada, nothing, zilch, zip (!) and the next year you have to start all over again and spend the first three months reviewing. I don't think kids retain the abstract principles that grammar is until they have a reason to or until they reach the point where it clicks. Playing Madlibs did help my kids immensely because it was part of a game. But I think it is when you start to study a foreign language that it really comes home.

 

I didn't read all the other posts in this thread so please forgive me if I am repeating what others have said.

:iagree::iagree::iagree: My dd9 has used Abeka since 1st grade in her school. This year is our first year HS and WOW! She doesnt have much retention in Grammar. We are using a CM approach and I am helping her breakdown her parts of speech as she is writing and copying. This has helped in leaps and bounds. She is writing the sentence and picking the parts of speech herself now. She has begun to see how one part operates of the other. You do have to break down the sentences for them as another post said. And just keep at it!

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