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Grammar Rants

How a Backstage Tour of Writing Complaints Can Help Students Make Informed, Savvy Choices About Their Writing

Patricia Dunn, SUNY Stony Brook, Ken Lindblom

ISBN 978-0-86709-605-7 / 0-86709-605-5 / 2011 / 152pp / Paperback
Imprint: Heinemann
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Grade Level: 11th - College
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rant (rant) n. 1. Violent or extravagant speech or writing. 2. A speech or piece of writing that incites anger or violence.

The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language

grammar rant (gramm?r rant) n. 1. A writer’s or speaker’s view that language is deteriorating, and with it, the world, the people in it, and their morals.

Patricia A. Dunn and Ken Lindblom

Is bad grammar not just wrong but morally wrong? Do comma splices and dangling participles signal a spiritual decline among our youth? Does a double negative signal the end of civilization as we know it? How outraged should we be at errors of punctuation, syntax, diction, and just plain clumsy phrasing?

Patricia A. Dunn and Ken Lindblom take on the world of grammar ranters, showing you how to take your students on a backstage tour of the ranters’ claims and denunciations, and their outraged complaints about other people’s language. Offering multiple examples and insights about a wide range of grammar rants, they focus on:

  • grammar and morality
  • grammar and intelligence
  • spelling, texting, splices, fragments, and other “grammar traps.”

Each chapter includes actual rants along with extensive editorial commentary, instructional activities, and classroom lessons that will energize student discussion and educate students about language and correctness, about what it really means to be a good writer.

Using Grammar Rants in writing classes will:

  • teach students the conventions of different genres
  • raise students’ awareness of real world grammatical issues
  • strengthen students’ textual analysis and critical thinking skills
  • break that link between error and evil.

Grammar Rants provides the background teachers need to speak with authority about punctuation, correctness, and other hot-button issues. Its practical activities, handouts, and lessons will promote savvy writing by empowering teachers and students to see for themselves how best to raise the quality of their written and spoken language without resorting to ranting.

Introduction         What is a Grammar Rant?

Chapter 1            Grammar Rants and Morality

Chapter 2            Grammar Rants and Intelligence

Chapter 3            Grammar Rants on Spelling

Chapter 4            Grammar Rants on Texting/Email Language

Chapter 5            The Grammar Trap: What’s a Writer to Do?

In Depth

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Email planningservices@heinemann.com if you would like to contact Patricia Dunn directly about professional development support.

Email planningservices@heinemann.com if you would like to contact Ken Lindblom directly about professional development support.

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