If you are a parent of a child in primary school, you will probably be becoming aware of the increased focus on grammar and punctuation contained in the new National Curriculum. Your child’s school may have provided information about the new English grammar, punctuation and spelling tests which Year 2 and Year 6 children will be taking next summer. Depending upon when and where you went to school, you may find the information coming from school (and the terminology being used by your child) challenging.

Whether you are bewildered by the terminology used or just want to know a little more to support your child, I hope you will find this blog useful. You can click on the Parent’s Start Page to link to information about different areas of grammar and punctuation. Alternatively, enter a term in the search bar or click on a word in the cloud of labels. If you have further queries, get in touch and I will try to help where I can. You can also follow me on Twitter @grammarpuss13.

Monday, 16 November 2015

Standard English

Standard English is a dialect of English which uses what is considered to be 'correct' grammar and is used in formal situations.  It contrasts with other, local dialects of English which we use in our everyday life in whatever area of the country we come from.

Dialect is more than just an accent: each local dialect may have different ways of using grammar and different vocabulary.  For instance, if you come from Newcastle, in your dialect you would use 'me' instead of 'my' and 'wor' instead of 'our'.  You might 'hoy' something, instead of 'throw' it.

We must ensure children understand that it is not wrong to use their own, local dialect.  Every dialect has its own rich grammar and vocabulary and is used perfectly to communicate in its own area.  However, we need to explain that the Standard English dialect should be used when we write, and also when we speak in formal situations, so that we can be understood everywhere in the English speaking world.

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