Is Grammar Instruction Dead? Why Grammar is More Important Than Ever Before

classroom instruction differentiation ela teachers texas teks-aligned Feb 27, 2022

Grammar may not be taught in the way we learned it when we were young (sentence diagramming, anyone?), but it is still just as important, particularly in the world of apps and phones that can fix what you say seamlessly.


I'm going to take you through my thoughts on if grammar instruction is dead (hint: it's not!), why it's important to find the time, and how you can easily incorporate it in your language arts or reading block. 


The Research

Grammar is ubiquitous in a language, whether spoken or written. It describes a structure or system of a language and can be made up of syntax (combining words into sentences) and morphology (forms of words).

There are some misconceptions about grammar. Some believe that structures don’t need to be taught and that students will acquire them on their own, or lessons would be too dull when taught explicitly.

However, grammar is important and does need to be addressed and integrated in a literacy block. When grammar instruction is implemented, the quality of student writing can also improve.




Finding the Time to Teach Grammar

A roadblock many educators may experience is finding the time to teach grammar in the upper elementary classroom. It can be hard to find the time to teach these important language arts skills when reading comprehension, writing composition, and math are heavily emphasized.

However, grammar can be integrated seamlessly in a literacy block in ways such as morning work or daily warmup, small groups, and during the writing process. It can also be directly taught and reviewed with students in a short span of time!


Smart and Simple Literacy: Grammar

Smart and Simple Literacy Grammar Mini-Lessons are for upper elementary teachers in Grades 3-5 who are looking for minimal-prep and engaging resources for students that align to TEKS and CCSS standards.

The mini-lessons are straightforward and do not follow a script where teachers read word-for-word, but rather as a guiding point for teachers to use as needed, depending on the needs of their students.

These mini-lessons can be implemented in conjunction with a lesson during writer’s workshop, small group instruction, or can be taught on its own, with multiple lesson options to differentiate based on what state or grade level students are in.


What does it include?


1. Teacher Lesson Plan

This grammar resource includes a detailed teacher lesson plan with objectives, essential questions, and grammar video suggestions.


2. Slideshow

The non-editable slideshow follows along with the guided notes and practice and are filled with easy-to-understand definitions and terminology, fun and engaging questions, and bright and colorful pictures!


3. Guided Notes

The guided notes can be printed at a scale of 80% for a perfect fit in standard-size and composition notebooks! Students can stay engaged with fill-in-the-blank notes and guided practice sentences from the slideshow. The notes are designed in a kid-friendly format to easily refer to when revisiting important grammar skills.


4. Independent Practice

Have students complete the practice activity in a small group, in pairs or independently.



5. Check for Understanding

Short and simple exit tickets for each lesson included to check for student understanding. Use as a quick formative assessment or grade!


6. Answer Key

An answer key for the practice and exit ticket activities are included for easy grading!


Suggested Timeline

The mini-lessons are designed to easily implement in a literacy block. Below is a suggested timeline of how long each part of the lesson takes:

Mini-Lesson and Guided Practice: 5-10 minutes

Independent Practice: 5-10 minutes

Closing: 2-3 minutes

Exit Ticket: 3-5 minutes

You can conduct all 4 parts of the lesson in one 15 to 30-minute time period or spread it out over the course of a week!


There is also a digital component that is included for students to learn at home or at school! 


Click below to learn more on how to save time teaching grammar! 

Grammar Mini-Lesson Bundle


Grab one of these FREE resources below to get started on your path to becoming a Creative Teacher!

Product Listing Toolkit

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Ways to Engage Guide

Get the guide with simple and easy ways to engage students throughout the school year!



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