Should spelling,punctuation and grammar be part of the curricculam?

  hssutton 15:01 01 Apr 13

Schools could refuse to administer an exam in spelling, punctuation and grammar for 11-year-olds in England because it risks promoting a culture of “teaching to the test” at the expense of providing a broad curriculum.

Often I'm unable to understand the written word in various forums due to the lack of punctuation grammar and spelling. Of course this may be down to my age and the onset of senility.

I guess my real question is are the NUTs nuts?

Teachers call for boycott

  fourm member 16:02 01 Apr 13

It does make you think teachers don't like the idea of being told what to do and even;

'Members of the NUT also want the union to explore the possibility of boycotting Ofsted inspections.'

don't like the idea of being judged on how well they do it.

I don't know the detail but, from the link, it seems that the teaching is of informal as well as formal language and the difference between the two. So it doesn't sound as though the children are expected to spend hours learning about the dative case or the future imperfect tense.

Surely, the basics of grammar, punctuation and spelling are essential. Try re-reading that link but make it about football. How stupid would it be to expect someone to be a member of the football team without knowing any of the rules of the game?

  john bunyan 16:54 01 Apr 13

Examples a'plenty in Lynn Truss' book of why punctuation is important. Of course children need a basic knowledge of grammar and spelling if they want to be prepared for higher education and jobs. The NUT is quite wrong.

Eat Shoots and Leaves

  spider9 17:29 01 Apr 13

john bunyan

I'm not exactly sure that is what the NUT are saying, however. It seems more, to me, that they are complaining about the amount of time needed to 'prepare' kids for the various tests required.

I would hope we all agree that the answer to the OP's original thread question must be a resounding YES - but at the same time I worry if politicians are attempting to force teachers into a straightjacket curriculum.

Our teachers are professionals and should have leeway in how they teach, without heavy government pressure. When politicians get involved in anything like this, I worry!!

Hope this thread won't deteriorate into numerous , "How I was taught when I was at school..." kind of thing!!

  rickf 17:41 01 Apr 13


  Forum Editor 17:56 01 Apr 13

It is my experience that a lot of today's teachers have enough trouble managing to use correct spellings, punctuation and grammar in their own writing, never mind having the additional burden of trying to teach children those skills.

  spider9 18:08 01 Apr 13

Indeed, and txt spk doesn't help a lot.

  Al94 18:20 01 Apr 13

That would be curriculum!

  woodchip 18:53 01 Apr 13

Just my thoughts, I never have professed! quite the reverse I am a bad speller but got better by using PC and correction facility built into Browser and WordPerfect. But can one speak without breathing? I would say this would come natural ie; comer or full stop depending on the length of what you want to say. etc it's making yourself understood that's the main thing in speech

  john bunyan 19:04 01 Apr 13

Forum Editor

"It is my experience that a lot of today's teachers have enough trouble managing to use correct spellings, punctuation and grammar in their own writing, never mind having the additional burden of trying to teach children those skills."

How sad that is. That means that such things need to be taught at the secondary school level. I worry if teachers at that level are equally illiterate.

I was pleased a few months ago to proof read my (then 17 year old ) grand daughter's extended 4000 word originally researched essay, as part of her International Baccalaureate that the only mistake I could find was the non - use of the upper case H when referring to God as him rather than Him. This IB seems very demanding and I believe that the essay writing skills are the sort that many first year undergraduates lack. The whole grammar issue seems better handled by other countries who teach English, such as India and China of all places.

  Al94 19:38 01 Apr 13

If teachers fail to educate in terms of spelling and grammar then they are not fit for purpose regardless of what other pressures are on them. Marks should be deducted from exam work for errors.

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