Grammar and the Teaching of Writing

Noguchi’s article addresses the fact that the way those in education teach grammar desperately needs to be reevaluated.The main conflict of her article is between the need to emphasize proper grammar and the need to encourage the deeper aspects of writing, such as complex argument and structure. So many many teachers and professors get so caught up in the former that they fail to focus on the latter.Students who’s writing is only cited for its grammatical errors may become discouraged from getting involved with the “fun” aspects of the craft. In order to keep students from cheating themselves out of the joy of writing, it is necessary to reconsider which elements of grammar are the most important.

Similar to Curzan’s article,Noguchi tackles the “monolith” of writing that many teachers and professors retain in regards to their evaluation of students’ writing.They are obsessed with the “perfect paper” which no one (including themselves) can create. Issues of grammar,being the most evident,are often the first things that they desire to be perfected.Noguchi asks us to consider if grammar is really that important to writing.While grammar does allow for a writer to seem knowledgable of the academic norms,it isn’t the vehicle for expressing content or style.I have an ESL student who’s writing often has weaknesses such as subject-verb agreement,but her knowledge of the topic shines through regardless.With that being said,grammar serves as an important gateway to content. No one cares if your paper delves into important issues if it seems as if a toddler wrote it.

As with the Curzan article,Nocuchi is suggesting that the teaching of grammar change with the times.Rather than being anal over every grammar rule,students would be best served by more attention to the “meat” of writing: argument,logic, and analysis.

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One Response to Grammar and the Teaching of Writing

  1. roblcook says:

    By Robert Cook

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