Key strategies for teaching editing

Sample Pages       Key strategies for teaching editing P u n c t u a t i o n , G r a m m a r, a n d S p e l l i n g Dave Leochko and to...
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      Key strategies for teaching editing P u n c t u a t i o n , G r a m m a r, a n d S p e l l i n g

Dave Leochko and tom Rossi

Portage & Main Press

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© 2009 by Dave Leochko and Tom Rossi Portage & Main Press acknowledges the financial support of the Government of Canada through the Book Publishing Industry Development Program (BPIDP) for our publishing activities. All rights reserved. Except as noted, no part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means—graphic, electronic, or otherwise—without the prior written permission of the publisher. Printed and bound in Canada by Friesens. Library and Archives Canada Cataloguing in Publication Leochko, Dave, 1963—         Key strategies for teaching editing : punctuation, grammar, and spelling / Dave Leochko, Tom Rossi. ISBN 978-1-55379-198-0         1. Editing—Study and teaching.  I. Rossi, Tom  II. Title. PN162.L46 2009                        808’.027                       C2009-900413-5

SW-COC-001271

100—318 McDermot Ave. Winnipeg, MB Canada R3A 0A2 Email: [email protected] Tel: 204-987-3500 Toll-free: 1-800-667-9673 Fax-free: 1-866-734-8477

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Contents Introduction . ..................................................................................................................... 1 How this Book Is Organized ................................................................................................ 2 A Note about the Editing Exercises ...................................................................................... 2 How to Use this Book ......................................................................................................... 3 A Disclaimer ...................................................................................................................... 5 Chapter 1 • Punctuation: The Traffic Signs of Reading and Writing ........................................ 7 1.1 The Period ............................................................................................................ 10 1.2 Capital Letters ....................................................................................................... 13 1.3 The Question Mark ................................................................................................ 16 1.4 The Exclamation Mark ........................................................................................... 19 1.5 The Comma .......................................................................................................... 22 1.6 The Colon ............................................................................................................. 26 1.7 Sentence Fragments .............................................................................................. 29 1.8 Quotation Marks .................................................................................................... 32 1.9 Dialogue ............................................................................................................... 35 Chapter 2 • Grammar: The Building Blocks of a Structure . ................................................. 39 2.1 Adverbs ................................................................................................................ 42 2.2 Adjectives ............................................................................................................. 45 2.3 Contractions .......................................................................................................... 48 2.4 Articles (a, an, and the) ......................................................................................... 51 2.5 Agreement of Subject and Verb . ............................................................................. 54 2.6 Verb Tenses ........................................................................................................... 58 2.7 Much and Many, Fewer and Less ............................................................................ 61 2.8 Homophones ......................................................................................................... 65 2.9 Superlatives .......................................................................................................... 68 2.10 Conjunctions ......................................................................................................... 71 2.11 Double Negatives . ................................................................................................. 74 2.12 Expressing Numbers .............................................................................................. 77 Chapter 3 • Spelling: A Recipe for Success . ...................................................................... 81 3.1 i Before e, Except after c . ...................................................................................... 84 3.2 The Silent e .......................................................................................................... 87 3.3 Plurals .................................................................................................................. 90 3.4 The Endings el, al, and le . ..................................................................................... 93 3.5 Compound Words .................................................................................................. 96 3.6 Prefixes . ............................................................................................................... 99 3.7 Silent Letters ...................................................................................................... 102 3.8 Mixed-Up Words .................................................................................................. 105 3.9 ing Endings ......................................................................................................... 109 3.10 Plurals ................................................................................................................ 112 3.11 Shun Words ........................................................................................................ 116 3.12 Digraphs ............................................................................................................. 119 Glossary ....................................................................................................................... 123

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INTRODUCTION Punctuation, grammar, and spelling! These three components of written work often present difficulties for both teachers and students. Teachers are always looking for ways to present these topics so that the lessons are meaningful yet kept in a context that will encourage students to apply them to their own daily work. Meanwhile, students often perceive these three components as dry, uninteresting topics. They represent the unglamorous side of writing. Another, related, issue facing teachers is how to teach editing. Many students are quite disinterested in the skill of editing. Many view editing as only an afterthought when the work of writing is done. But, as educators, we want students to understand that editing is the necessary next step in writing, and it needs to be done as soon as the ideas are put on paper. We have designed Key Strategies for Teaching Editing: Punctuation, Grammar, and Spelling to address the issue of how to make editing interesting and helpful for students. As a classroom teacher and as a principal, the two of us have had first-hand experiences with the frustrations inherent in making editing meaningful and purposeful for students, and, to this end, we have emphasized the link between the mechanics of writing and the process of editing. When looking at the word strategy, we find many different definitions. One of the most common is “a plan that is implemented toward reaching a goal,” but a strategy can mean much more than that. In games, it is often referred to as a theory; in business management, it can be an approach. In writing, a strategy is defined as “the management of language for a specific effect.” The strategies we offer in this book are the many different ways to manage language. We use punctuation, grammar, and spelling to manage language. And editing is the management of language. For example, a strategy might be the effective use of plurals to convey a message or the use of commas to better understand a list. Students often are familiar with some of the management techniques of language but rarely have the definitions or knowledge to articulate them. We offer some of this background knowledge with opportunities to put the knowledge into practice. This book is geared for children in grades 4 to 7. We have kept the language simple for a number of reasons. First, we want the students to focus on editing the passages, not on other reading strategies—decoding, for example. We have in the past presented some more complex passages to our students but found that they focused more on the story than on the editing process. Students come with a wide range of experiences, and we wrote the stories to accommodate this wide range. The editing strategies we have included might be new for grade-4 students and might be review and practice for grade-7 students. Since our intent is to have students focus on the editing, even older students who are reviewing should not feel that the passages are “beneath” them.

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Introduction

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Chart 2: Tips for Working with the Letter e

Chart 3: Silent-Letter Patterns

A Disclaimer The English language is structurally complex, and no one set of rules will apply to any given situation. This book is meant to help teachers teach editing by using certain strategies, which we define as ways to manage language. It is not necessarily designed to teach kids punctuation, grammar, and spelling (though they will, of course, learn these when they are learning how to edit). The examples, therefore, do not provide a comprehensive study of punctuation, grammar, and spelling. (In particular, the spelling of many words in the English language just doesn’t seem to follow any rule.) In this book we have made reference to a number of rules, but teachers and students alike should know that these rules cannot apply to every situation. Teachers and students should make frequent use of dictionaries and consult guide books to get a comprehensive understanding of these subjects. There are many good guide books available for middle-school-aged kids.

Notes 1. Nancie Atwell, In the Middle: Writing, Reading, and Learning with Adolescents (Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, 1978), 127. 2. Donald H. Graves, “Helping Children Learn Conventions,” ch 12 in A Fresh Look at Writing (Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, 1994).

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Introduction

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Punctuation

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Reference Sheet 1.2: Capital Letters Capital letters are also known as upper-case letters. They often look a bit different from lower-case (small) letters. The use of upper-case letters is called capitalization. Capital letters are used in many different situations. Here are some of the more common rules to help you use capital letters correctly: Beginning of a Sentence Use a capital letter at the beginning of a sentence. Reading is a favourite activity of mine. Names Capitalize names. Tim was looking for his dog, Scruffy. Dialogue Capitalize the first word of a piece of dialogue or a quote. Betty said, “My favourite flavour is vanilla.”

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Titles Capitalize the words in titles, except for small words such as a, an, the, but, as, if, and, or (but capitalize them if they are used at the beginning of the title). The Cat in the Hat Holidays, Months, Days Capitalize the names of holidays, months, and days. Do not capitalize the names of seasons. I enjoy the many colours of autumn. I can hardly wait for Christmas. It will be here on Tuesday. The Word I Always capitalize the word I. In winter I love to go skating.

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Chapter 1 • Punctuation

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Editing Exercise 1.2 rita was so excited. She was going to be going on her frist trip on a plain. Rita was going to mexico with her family for the Spring break. They would be gone for Ten days. The trip was only Twenty four hours away and Rita could hardly wait. she were packing her bags and making sure she had everything with her. Rita packed sun lotion sunglasses and a hat in her beach bag. She also decided to take a book along to read while sitting on the Beach. She packed the book, my favorite week by author cole m. Teal. She thought the title of the book fitted perfectley for the time. Rita wondered if her Mom and dad were also ready. She decided to check with them. She wented to they’re bedroom and stuck her head threw the door and called out, “hello, mom, Dad, are you ready for our trip?” Rita saw both of them fast a sleep on the bed, dressed in their summer outfits, with two suitcases packed at the end of the bed. hmmm, i guess their ready, thought Rita to herself.

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Number of errors I corrected: _________ Number of actual errors (see Answer Key 1.2): _________

Key Strategies for Teaching Editing

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Answer Key 1.2 Rita was so excited. She was going to be going on her first trip on a plane. Rita was going to Mexico with her family for the spring break. They would be gone for ten days. The trip was only twenty-four hours away and Rita could hardly wait. She was packing her bags and making sure she had everything with her. Rita packed sun lotion, sunglasses, and a hat in her beach bag. She also decided to take a book along to read while sitting on the beach. She packed the book My Favorite

Week by author Cole M. Teal. She thought the title of the book fit perfectly for the time. Rita wondered if her mom and dad were also ready. She decided to check with them. She went to their bedroom, stuck her head through the door, and called out, “Hello, Mom, Dad! Are you ready for our trip?” Rita saw both of them fast asleep on the bed, dressed in their summer outfits, with two suitcases packed at the end of the bed. Hmmm, I guess they’re ready, thought Rita.

©Portage & Main Press, 2009. This page may be reproduced for classroom use.

Number of actual errors corrected: _________

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Chapter 1 • Punctuation

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