Thursday, November 15, 2012

Pen Pals

Grammar is such a tedious task.

We love conversations, we love to read, we love to immerse ourselves in a good story whether it is in a book or on TV.

I already know that my sister "the writer" will criticize whatever it is I write - just like I criticize her music abilities...but we can still communicate and understand each other - and tell a few good stories.  She is so much better than I am when writing it down. I would choose the musical score for her words.

Samuel turns into a grump when we open up the grammar books. Sentence, nouns, verbs, adjectives. We study them one day and the next we have to start all over, in a grumpy mood. Needless to say, the grammar books now stay on the bookshelf.

Then one day he said "Mommy, remember you told me about pen pals?" I want to do it! Where can I find one?

Yahoo! to the rescue! I found a group of homeschool parents who share their child's information (age, gender) and then parents communicate with each other via email and exchange addresses.  The children then proceed to write each other via SNAIL MAIL.

This has been fantastic for Samuel.  A few weeks ago when he started writing letters he would dictate, I would write then he would copy it on the final page, in order to get sentences, punctuation and spelling right. Then addressing the envelope was totally new to him, but after one sample it was easy.  Now a month or two later he has 3 pen pals and writes his letters on his own.  He writes a draft, I edit, he does the rest.  This week I only made 2 corrections on one of the letters.

So I really think grammar can wait. He will probably need it to write papers in college.  I learned English grammar in graduate school - because all of my schooling had previously been in Spanish. I did have to edit a lot on my thesis - but so does everyone else taking that step!

We need experiences more than we need grammar!

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