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Celebrating Diversity Through Language Study

A New Approach to Grammar Lessons

By Jen McCreight
Foreword by Sonia Nieto

A student-centered approach to grammar study.

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What is language study?

Jen McCreight introduces us to a new approach to grammar study, a subject area all too often taught without students and their unique backgrounds in mind.  In today’s linguistically diverse classrooms, she argues that a more personal approach to grammar is necessary if we want to reach every learner.  “By linking language study to children’s’ backgrounds,” she writes, “and by empowering teachers, students, and families to become actively engaged in this work, the disconnect so many children feel from school will begin to shrink.” 

Language study is a student-centered approach to grammar study, with two primary components:

• teaching students how to negotiate the language they use based on context
• building on background knowledge to make the study of words relevant for all children.

Used either exclusively or embedded into an existing grammar curriculum, Jen’s step-by-step language study plan brings children’s home and school language together for more authentic grammar lessons that help students begin to view their own unique backgrounds as important and connected to the study of words.  With examples from 1st and 3rd grade classrooms, activities, tools, and project ideas that bring grammar to life, Celebrating Diversity Through Language Study promises a more culturally sensitive approach to grammar that will help all children thrive.

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