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Question about Memorizing Prepositions


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DD9 hasn't learned a list of prepositions yet, but she's starting to learn about them in grammar.  We're currently using R&S4.  My question is - Is it really all that important WHICH list she memorizes?  When I was in 5th grade I remember memorizing a list of prepositions.  And I made up my own song to memorize them.  THAT list is still in my head, so I think it would be easiest to teach her those prepositions.

 

Here they are:

 

aboard 

about 

above 

across 

after 

against

along 

among

around 

at 

before 

behind 

below

beneath 

beside

between 

beyond

by 

down 

during

except 

for 

from 

in

into 

like 

of 

off

on

over 

past 

since 

through

throughout

to 

toward

under

underneath

until 

up 

upon 

with 

within 

without

 

So is this sufficient? ...or would it be better for her to learn a more comprehensive list?  Probably a silly question, I know.  :)  But I'd love to hear what others have done.

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I do not see why one should memorize such a list of all. What is the purpose?

The only thing that is necessary IMO is that a student recognizes a reposition when she sees one.

 

I could see a point in memorizing prepositions in a language that has declensions, where certain prepositions required a different case. But in English?

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I had my son skip the memorization. I taught him how to find a preposition, what its purpose in the sentence is, how it works, etc. He became quite good at finding them without ever having memorized any lists. In fact, I think it's better that he NOT memorize the list, because some prepositions can function as other parts of speech in certain sentences. Because he knows how they work, those words don't trip him up.

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We will be using Easy Grammar next year and in that program it's pretty important to know your prepositions.  They have a list at the beginning of the book that you can photocopy and have your student use as a chart.  However, memorizing them is recommended.  I used EG many years ago with my oldest one year.  We set the list of prepositions to the tune of The Ants Go Marching.  I don't think she ever actually memorized all of the list, but we'd look at the list often and try singing it.  Someone posted a preposition song on youtube awhile ago (I guess I forgot to bookmark it). 

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In the immortal words of my 8th grade English teacher: 

 

"A preposition is anything a squirrel can do to a tree." 

 

Our hormone-charged middle school class never got over that, me included.

 

A squirrel can go UP a tree, he can go DOWN a tree, he can go THROUGH a tree, AROUND the tree, etc. 

 

That take care of MOST prepositions, leaving you to just remember some of the odd ones, like "aboard," "except," "without," etc. 

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It is important for the child to be able to locate a prepositional phrase so that they can understand if a word is a preposition or an adverb. This directly depends on whether there is an object of the preposition which can only be determined if the child can identify prepositional phrases. If you are planning on learning Latin, prepositions are very important for the ablative case as well as the accusative case with specific prepositions which deal with receiving. In Spanish, prepositional phrases are dealt with differently than adverbs as well, and that can be very confusing if the student doesn't understand why "near" is placed differently in two different sentences.

 

I was not big on memorizing, as I did not have large amounts of memorizing word lists (mine were prayers and Bible verses). However, my son has done significantly better knowing his prepositions by memorizing. He can utilize them now because he has a direct list in his head to pull from. We did the same thing with adverbs. It has helped immensely in Latin as well.

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Seems to me that nearly all prepositions are locating in time or space, so I think of them as location words. Is that close enough to correct, you people out there who know more grammar than I do?

That's how we deal with them. More specifically my daughter says they're words that show relationships of time and space between things.
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We will be using Easy Grammar next year and in that program it's pretty important to know your prepositions.  They have a list at the beginning of the book that you can photocopy and have your student use as a chart.  However, memorizing them is recommended.  I used EG many years ago with my oldest one year.  We set the list of prepositions to the tune of The Ants Go Marching.  I don't think she ever actually memorized all of the list, but we'd look at the list often and try singing it.  Someone posted a preposition song on youtube awhile ago (I guess I forgot to bookmark it). 

I used Easy Grammar with all of my kids and I never required them to memorize prepositions even though the program told us to. 

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DD9 hasn't learned a list of prepositions yet, but she's starting to learn about them in grammar.  We're currently using R&S4.  My question is - Is it really all that important WHICH list she memorizes?  When I was in 5th grade I remember memorizing a list of prepositions.  And I made up my own song to memorize them.  THAT list is still in my head, so I think it would be easiest to teach her those prepositions.

 

Here they are:

 

aboard 

about 

above 

across 

after 

against

along 

among

around 

at 

before 

behind 

below

beneath 

beside

between 

beyond

by 

down 

during

except 

for 

from 

in

into 

like 

of 

off

on

over 

past 

since 

through

throughout

to 

toward

under

underneath

until 

up 

upon 

with 

within 

without

 

So is this sufficient? ...or would it be better for her to learn a more comprehensive list?  Probably a silly question, I know.   :)  But I'd love to hear what others have done.

 

That's pretty good--looks like 44. We used Easy Grammar, and they had 53 on their list. I think you covered most though, and the song will make it easier. I definitely found it helpful for my kids to memorize a list. When they could identify prep. phrases easily, it made identifying the rest of the sentence so much easier.

 

The real question is, will you post your song on you tube? Maybe we should all hear this!

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My problem with memorizing a list of prepositions is that many of these words do not always function as prepositions. Far better to wait until the child can understand whar they do in the sentence. IMHO, "Let's find the nouns and verbs" is the best way to spend time in the early years. "Have, is, are, was, were, etc." is worth memorizing.

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Do you use it every year and do you use DG along with it?  Obviously you must like it.

I used it for about 2 years for each child. Rough estimate. I always felt (and still do) that grammar is best learned by listening and speaking. Writing assignments will uncover pesky grammar areas that can easily be corrected and explained while grading papers. The only reason we ever started using Easy Grammar was my oldest was approaching the age of PSATs and I wanted to make sure that I had not missed anything important. It's easy. It doesn't take up a lot of time. And quite frankly, it is something for one student to do while I work one-on-one with another student. It's the best grammar program I've ever used, but the only other things we tried were workbooks from the grocery store. 

 

PS. I bought Daily Grams one year, but we never used it.

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We learned the prepositions to the tune of Yankee Doodle. There is a free download here of the lyrics side by side with the prepositions:

 

http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Learn-the-Prepositions-to-the-tune-of-Yankee-Doodle-1038208

 

ETA: this is the CC list of prepositions. I noticed that FLL has a couple that CC doesn't have. 

 

At CC some of the kids sung it to the tune of Gilligan's Island. I could never quite figure out the timing.

 

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That's pretty good--looks like 44. We used Easy Grammar, and they had 53 on their list. I think you covered most though, and the song will make it easier. I definitely found it helpful for my kids to memorize a list. When they could identify prep. phrases easily, it made identifying the rest of the sentence so much easier.

 

The real question is, will you post your song on you tube? Maybe we should all hear this!

Just came back to this.  Thanks for all the great thoughts!  And, no, I don't think you'd really want to hear my song. :)

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