A Deep Dive into Grammar Mini-Lessons for Upper Elementary
By Kirsten Hammond
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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.
What is Grammar?
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).
What are Some Common Misconceptions?
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.
Why is Grammar Important?
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.
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.
A Solution to Teaching Grammar With Little Time
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!
My Grammar Mini-Lesson resources 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 the Bundle include?
1. Teacher Lesson Plan
This grammar resource includes a detailed teacher lesson plan with objectives, essential questions, and grammar video suggestions.
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 Mini-Lesson 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 (and save $$ in the process by grabbing the bundle at a discounted price)!
Kirsten is a former 3rd and 5th grade teacher who loves helping upper elementary teachers by creating resources and sharing ideas that are engaging, research-based, and TEKS-aligned. She is a work-from-home mama of 3 rambunctious little ones and loves running, true crime, and lots of coffee.