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Review by Tara Mitchell
Grammar is a much dreaded subject in my homeschool. My daughter does well in her individual grammar lessons day to day, however, when it’s time to put all of those lessons into the context of her writing, she gets brain fog. She cannot remember beyond the basic parts of speech, and she cannot remember the more advanced grammar concepts. This leads to much frustration and quite a few tears.
Until we discovered Fix It! Grammar, that is!
The traditional method of teaching grammar is to teach a grammar rule, and then the students apply that rule to a set of practice problems and exercises. Once that concept has been taught, they move on to the next rule. The problem with that is that students often have a hard time transferring what they’ve learned in isolation in grammar to their own compositions.
Fix It! Grammar teaches in a completely different way. Students are taught grammar rules through a series of editing practices. But, they’re taught each rule as it’s needed not out of context. This helps students see how those grammar rules apply to written work. Because they’re editing each day, they are creating habits they can transfer to their own papers.
Each week, students and teachers go over the information in the “Learn It” section. This area contains the notes that show what will be covered in that week’s assignments. Students are then asked to familiarize themselves with the grammar cards which are in the back of the student book.
After that, the student is expected to mark that day’s writing passage using the instructions in the “Learn It” section. Here, they may be looking for subject-verb agreement, choosing the correct homophone, underlining prepositional phrases, adding correct punctuation, and more.
Once the teacher has helped the student correct the passage, the student rewrites the passage correctly in a spiral notebook. At the end of the book, students will have written a story that demonstrates all of the grammar rules taught throughout the year.
The student book contains all of the “Learn It” lessons and editing passages for 33 weeks of instruction. There are grammar cards students will use to review each week’s grammar rules. At the back of the book, there is a glossary of grammar rules. This glossary goes into a little more depth about each concept with more examples and advanced concepts if the students are interested.
The teacher book has the same “Learn It” lessons that are in the student book. It contains all of the days’ passages as well, but they’re marked up so teacher’s can check to see that the students have marked their work correctly.
The teacher book also contains in depth discussion points for the corrections in case your student needs a little extra help with a concept.
This is the third year we’ll be using Fix It! Grammar in our homeschool. We started in Book 1 when my daughter was in the 6th grade. If you are wondering where to place your student, you can give them a placement test. I highly recommend purchasing the teacher’s guide for your level; it is very helpful since it contains the answer key and further teaching suggestions.
If you’re looking for a way to reinforce grammar skills in the context of ‘real’ writing, Fix It! Grammar may be just what you need!