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Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Why Homeschoolers Need to Avoid Grammar Pet Peeves

This is a paid post.  The contents are 100% my opinion.


Grammar is important.  There is very little more irritating than reading along only to discover a grammatical error staring you in the face.  I realize the importance of proper grammar not only as a professional writer and blogger, but as a homeschooling parent as well.  A wonderful resource I have discovered to help guide me through the process of creating error-free writing is the Grammar Checker at Grammarly.com

Homeschooled children are often pre-judged.  They are thought to:

Lack social skills
Lack fashion sense
Lack peer knowledge
Lack educational skills

These prejudices abound even though standardized test scores typically reveal that homeschoolers outperform their public-schooled peers and many homeschoolers have graduated from colleges to successfully enter the world as well-rounded and happily adjusted adults.  These students successfully master the English language despite its inconsistencies and seemingly lack of logical grammatical design.

Another problem with learning to write well in today’s world is the use of Facebook and texting abbreviations.  LOL, JK, IMHO and others are so commonly used that they can be confused for real words and phrases.  Of course, if you learn to spell using cheese crackers with imprinted letters, it can just be a fun combination of letters:

Still, the fastest way to turn up an onlooker’s eyebrow is to make a grammatical mistake in speaking or writing.  If you cringe when you are in the middle of reading a well-written article and come across a grammatical error, you know exactly what I’m talking about.

Suddenly, the writer appears less than intelligent.

Common errors include:

Your vs. You’re
Affect or Effect?
Lay, Laid or Lie?
Than vs. then
They’re vs. Their
Whether vs. weather
Which or that?
Good vs. well
Who or whom?

Many of these slip past software intended to find them.  This is how Grammarly.com is different and ready to help.

Whenever your homeschooler has a report to write, have him run it through the Grammar Check at Grammarly.com.  If you are unsure about which word phrasing to use, run it through the Grammar Check at Grammarly.com to select the proper form.

It's very easy.  Copy your text and plug it into the Grammar Check.  It will automatically alert you of misspelled words and other mistakes as well as make suggestions for improvements.  You have the option of choosing what style of writing you are submitting as well.

Often words that are spelled correctly but used in the wrong context are missed by other software.  The Grammar Check at Grammarly.com will alert you of improper modifiers, quantifiers, prepositions and punctuation errors.

A serious writing offense is copying what someone else wrote and passing it off as though it is your own work.  This is known as plagiarism.  Plagiarism can become a tempting cop out for a tired student who needs to turn in a paper on time.  Since learning can sometimes mean mimicking what you saw or heard until you develop your own style, plagiarism can also be a somewhat honest mistake for early writers.

As an experienced writer with college on the horizon, it is important to express your skills and personal style.  It is a good idea to double check your grammar on essays written for college entrance or scholarships too.  In this case, one grammatical error could end up costing thousands of dollars in missed scholarship money.

Gain confidence as a writer as you put an end to grammatical errors with Grammarly.com.  Stop making embarrassing mistakes in your writing.  Next thing you know, you may be asked to help edit the writings of others.

What are the grammar mistakes that irk you the most?

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