To teach me grammar when I was a child, my dad bought me a thick hardcover copy of Macmillan’s English, filled with chapters and myriad examples on the eight parts of speech and their usage. And of course, the requisite accompanying grammar drills.
It’s a very good book. But at the end of the day it’s a text book.
And while there will always be a place for grammar text books on our shelves, I have now just recently discovered this genre called “language art picture books”.
A story about suffixes? I’m intrigued enough to scooch in a little nook on the shelf for it.
The storyline is a little corny and a little wacky but I liked it, I had a good laugh. And I also like that in fifteen minutes, I could have a quick dive into learning about suffixes, what they are and what they do.
There is a guide at the back that lists common suffixes and their functions, e.g. adding to a noun to make it plural, adding to an adjective to make a noun, adding to a noun to make an adjective, adding to a noun to make it go away, or adding to a work to make it full of itself, and some rules for adding suffixes to words.
Other language art picture books by Robin Pulver and Lynn Rowe Reed include Punctuation Takes a Vacation, Silent Letters Loud and Clear, and Nouns and Verbs Have A Field Day.
While the series appears to have received mixed reviews, I frankly do think that it’s pretty good. Because it’s hard work to write a good story. It must be even more challenging to write an entertaining story underpinned with the objective of teaching grammar.
I wouldn’t have the gumption, even if I mustered up all earnestness, so I’m really thankful someone out there is fearless enough to do it.
Three cheers for word endings, and three even louder cheers for writers of language arts picture books. 🙂
…of the non-financial kind, heh! 😉
I mentioned A Field Full of Horses in yesterday’s post as being one of the latest favourites in our reading shelf.
It’s also the latest favourite as a copywork resource, having made the most of DD’s interest in the book to encourage her to read and write.
While I am aware that the main objective of copywork is to familiarize a child with the look and feel of properly constructed sentences; from our own experience, through copying out a selected sentence in a favourite book, she would recognize it the next time we read the book together and be inspired to keep working at reading.
It’s unconventional…but then, I’ve come to learn, God creates every child as a unique individual. And the benefit of working with one’s own child, is the ability to embrace individuality and customise the learning journey to their aptitude and interest. 🙂
Some of the excerpts she has chosen for writing…