Verbs, adjectives, suffixes, adverbs - requirement to teach in KS1

(61 Posts)
ipadquietly Fri 20-Sep-13 19:33:07

Some of my class are so verbally challenged many of them can't string a sentence together orally. Next year they will need to deconstruct a sentence using technical vocab, and recognise suffixes, prefixes, etc.

Does anyone else who teaches KS1 think this is absolutely mindbogglingly ridiculous and unnecessary?

Elibean Sat 21-Sep-13 15:17:52

I have a degree in English Literature (a good one) and have no idea what suffixes, prefixes etc are blush

I 'know' grammar. I just don't know what the terms are. So I shall look forward to my Y2 dd2 teaching me (no one taught dd1 when she was in KS1 - or since, afaik).

I have to google most of these terms and I had an A at GCSE for Eng Lang plus an Alevel in Eng Lit blush

DD is in yr 2 now and has already been encouraged at school to use more interesting words

Elibean Sat 21-Sep-13 15:58:38

And although both of mine (6 and 9) are bright and doing well at a good school, I have to admit I grin at the notion of them happily nattering about split digraphs! Perhaps mine are weird, but they never chat about grammar in their spare time smile

But on a more serious note, I can't help thinking that the more language/literacy challenged amongst their peers, though probably quite capable of learning the correct term for a concept, would benefit more from time spent just helping them learn a wider vocabulary and, actually, just talking or listening to correct grammar first. I know, in theory, they can do both - but in practice, the curriculum seems to be increasingly packed.

ipadquietly Sat 21-Sep-13 17:53:24

So, I asked my Y2 class at the beginning of the year what a simile is, because I know they were introduced to them in Y1. There was much humming and hahhing. Most couldn't remember, and then we had a murmur of 'bubbly bath' and 'yellow yoyos', because they'd remembered alliteration.

An older child would be able to relate the word 'simile' to 'similar', and therefore have a frame of reference for the jargon. In the same way, an older child will be able to relate verbs to adverbs.

I think, in infant school we should be providing children with a broad vocabulary (powerful verbs, adjectives and adverbs), which children will (hopefully) use in their speech and written work. I see no need to classify these words at such a young age.

mrz Sat 21-Sep-13 18:47:08

"I think, in infant school we should be providing children with a broad vocabulary (powerful verbs, adjectives and adverbs)"

so why not say "that's a great adjective /adverb" or "that's a powerful verb"

ipadquietly Sat 21-Sep-13 21:57:04

What is the point of using the jargon if children don't have a clear concept of what a sentence is? Again, we are asking them to run before they can walk, as in so many areas of literacy. Why not just concentrate on developing language skills?
.

WidowWadman Sat 21-Sep-13 22:03:35

How should children get what the concept of a sentence is without being taught it?

This thread baffles me somehow. Maybe it's a UK thing though - I remember having been taught grammar pretty much from the start when growing up in Germany.

amistillsexy Sat 21-Sep-13 22:05:47

Why not just get on with teaching them things, instead of moaning that they don't already know it confused

ClayDavis Sat 21-Sep-13 22:16:21

I don't know if it is a UK wide thing, Widow. It seems to vary from school to school. I was taught it at school and I have taught it to KS1. Equally, I know lots of people my age who weren't taught it and schools where it doesn't seem to be taught now.

ipadquietly Sat 21-Sep-13 23:19:35

As everyone on this thread seems to be able to teach children of 6 to parse sentences, I think I will retire gracefully - from the thread and from the job.

RobotHamster Sat 21-Sep-13 23:22:56

I think its brilliant. DS is like a sponge and has been learning about adjectives this week. I was never taught any of this at school and still don't know what nouns and verbs are. He knows what a grapheme is (i dont) - he can cope with this.

simpson Sun 22-Sep-13 00:45:00

DD has been learning at school this week about verbs (although has known for a while).

She knows about alliteration (thanks Horrid Henry) because she has an older brother, ditto similies.

I guess things need to be repeated again and again, DD (yr1) has also been learning about time connectives (was her homework this week) which DS went over last year when in yr3 (now yr4).

mrz Sun 22-Sep-13 06:16:51

The very word sentence may be a grammar term you should introduce in reception/nursery ipadquietly and then they can learn the term and the concept.

Many of our pupils arrive with little language (unless you count point and grunt and whine) so we prioritise Speaking & Listening including developing vocabulary and grammar.

CecilyP Sun 22-Sep-13 08:02:11

I guess things need to be repeated again and again, DD (yr1) has also been learning about time connectives (was her homework this week) which DS went over last year when in yr3 (now yr4).

If they have to go over it again and again, it including in Y3, it suggests that they didn't really get it in KS1 as per ipad's post. Please don't retire, ipad - unless you want to for other reasons.

mrz Sun 22-Sep-13 08:33:21

It's called progression, they introduce the concept very simply at first then develop it year on year. A time connective? in Y1 might be next, then or when but in later years meanwhile, consequently, subsequently, initially, eventually etc. and I would hope they would stop calling them time connectives

Retropear Sun 22-Sep-13 08:36:02

I kind of have mixed views on this.

I used to call them describing,doing words etc in ks1 blush and yes to be honest concentrating on spelling,punctuation and confidence in writing was kind of enough imvho.

Also my dc are now in 5 and 4 and started doing the things mentioned in the op properly in year 3.I have to say they pick it up very quickly as it's hardly rocket science. I think they could leave it until year 3 to be frank but it needs to be covered then,leaving it until 5 &6 is too late. Pace is sometimes an issue in our school(they seem to have been doing prefixes and suffixes for aaaaaaages) so there is a danger they could run out of time if left until key stage 2.

But then my 3 are quite literate,not sure what is best for the less able tbh.Must be a nightmare already getting spelling,punctuation and content licked by year 2 if you struggle.

meditrina Sun 22-Sep-13 09:07:00

I suppose it ones don to whether you see grammar as abstract and 'difficult' and therefore inherently unsuitable for young children. Or whether you see it as a way of talking about language, using straightforward terms that children can absorb easily, alongside all the other proper terms they learn at school.

It's really not a difficult thing, though I suppose teachers who were not taught it themselves (in the 1970s and a few decades after) might struggle themselves. That is not however because grammar is not suitable for small children, nor because it can be taught iteratively, but because it was simply omitted as dull and hard.

OP may however be in quite a different situation - she says many in her class cannot even string a sentence together out loud. Now, these pupil need to learn how to produce a more standard version of the language. Teaching them they need a subject and a verb, and then giving them more options from there (ie a grammar based intervention) is a way ahead, long before they are able to read.

Retropear Sun 22-Sep-13 09:31:57

I also think a lot of it is used far more in ks2 so easier to teach ie checking pronouns in editing,drawing in more adjectives etc.

I guess the question is when is better to teach ie when will it go in more quickly.

Also if you push too much with some younger children you can put them off writing at all.Which is better less beautifully constructed writing or more less technically correct?

I feel for kids as amazing content with varied language smilies,metaphores etc is expected too.

I love creative writing myself but take my hat off to these young kids- a lot is expected of them.

ipadquietly Sun 22-Sep-13 10:05:18

mrz We do talk about what a sentence is, and expand and improve sentences in KS1. We do lots of work with questions, and how to answer using a full sentence. We cover time connectives (because it tells you about the time something is happening) and connectives (because they connect) - both easy for a 6/7 year old to relate to and learn to use. Adverbs will be covered by answering questions using 'how?'. Powerful verbs are collected through drama and children are encouraged to use them. Lots of work is done with adjectives.

My dispute is that most children will be unable to understand the words 'verbs, adjectives and adverbs' because they have no frames of reference for the words.

Also, I really don't see how knowing the word 'verb' is going to improve a 6 year old's literacy.

mrz Sun 22-Sep-13 10:09:08

but at the level of a 6 year old they learn by reference ...that is a really good verb you used in your sentence X ... please read it out to the class ...can anyone tell me the great verb X used?

CecilyP Sun 22-Sep-13 10:48:29

Is it just me:, am I the only one who is profoundly glad that no teacher told me that I used a really good verb in a sentence when I was 6-years-old? Come to think of it no-one told me I used a really good verb in any sentence throughout my school career.

mrz, are there any good verbs in the post above?

simpson Sun 22-Sep-13 10:49:17

DD's (5) year 1 homework this week was to write a few (I forget how many) sentences about doing chores around the house and underline the verb.

It seemed quite straight forward to me.

mrz Sun 22-Sep-13 12:28:50

I'm obviously older than you CecilyP because I was taught Grammar from reception and told I had used an interesting verb or an exciting adverb in my writing and loved it!
We used First Aid in English every day and worked through the exercises www.amazon.co.uk/First-English-Colour-Angus-MacIver/dp/1444193767/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1379849185&sr=1-1&keywords=first+aid+in+english#reader_1444193767

and sorry but no your verbs are very ordinary wink

mrz Sun 22-Sep-13 12:30:29

I actually purchased Mr Gwynne's Grammar for nostalgia

ClayDavis Sun 22-Sep-13 13:02:58

We worked through Hayden Richard's Junior English everyday. I'm not sure I can get quite so nostalgic about that.

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