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Top 2011 Educational Grammar Games
Many adults still have nightmares whenever they think back to thost first days in grammar school when they started learning about grammar.
While grammar does involve developing an understanding of things like dangling participles and passive voice, it doesn't have to be a childhood experience that kids will look back and remember as though it was some sort of grammar boot camp.
As an educator, it's especially important to instill an appreciation for grammar, rather than a fear of it. The one way to do this is by turning the entire learning experience into one that's fun.
Grammar games can go a long way toward helping kids understand that good grammer isn't just about following the "rules", it's about creating sentences that sound good and help other people understand what it is that you're actually trying to write.
Richard Byrne of Free Technology for Teachers offers a very useful list of 10 Grammar games that you can use both inside and outside the classroom. These games will inspire kids to dive right into grammar, without even realizing that they are "learning" - because they'll be too busy having fun.
One of the most flexible resources that Byrne mentions is Mad Libs, which actually offers a widget that you can embed right on your own website. This means that if you have a class website that you're already using, just install the widget and your students can start playing the game.
There's also games like Grammar Ninja, which combines an arcade style approach to the process of learning how to put words and sentences together. The game comes complete with explosions if you get any questions wrong!
Additional websites that Byrne covers includes the Houghton Mifflin Company offering called Grammar Blast, with over 35 interactive activities. There's also Grammar Practice Park from Harcourt School Publishers, the grammar page at the BBC's Skillwise site, and Maggie's Learning Adventures over at the popular Scholastic website.
The one thing that Byrne's list of grammar games
will show you is that there are more than enough free resources available on the web to help you make grammar more exciting for your students.
April 18, 2012 by Ryan Dube
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