Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Diagrammer/Die, grammar- 3.6 #sol19 Story Challenge

As part of eighth graders and I delving into intricate, under-explored worlds of sentence structure, today I dusted off diagramming as a visual way to make sense of grammatical conceits like parts of speech, subjects, verbs, phrases, clauses, etc. I then asked students to go find an "interesting sentence" in their choice-reading books -- one that made them stop to admire it, made them think, "Haven't seen a sentence like you before" or even "I'd like to write a sentence like you some day."

Here's the first one a student shared from a book about professional hockey player Connor McDavid, all 37 words of it:
On Oilers Now, a local sports radio program dedicated to discussing the team, Bob Stauffer fielded call after call from tortured fans despondent for Connor, the Oilers, their own suffering, and the second-unit power play.
Initially flustered, students started working through the basics of it and puzzled over next-level obstacles. Come to think of it, the experience reminds me now of how my wife taught me to ski: Try something foolishly hard, so the next challenge feels not-so-brutal.

When you're ready to play along, click through to see our solution. Comments welcome.

6 comments:

  1. This brings back memories. We spent the entire eighth grade diagramming sentences. Your student pick actough sentence to begin with.

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  2. I use diagramming as a tool to analyze text for the sake of revision. We say we are mapping the sentence and call the results a "sentence map." I will check out your "solution."

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  3. This is fascinating, it makes me wish that sometimes I was teaching older levels of students who have English as their first language. Love the diagram and presume the students learnt a lot too!

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  4. Brian, this is another one of your clever ideas and I love your tie-in to your beginnings as a skier.

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  5. Diagramming sentences ? Wonder if I could still do that. You did make want to pick up a book and find some of those sparkling sentences. You can surely write them.

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  6. I love me some sentence diagramming- a lost art for sure!

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