Tuesday, January 31, 2012

English *Hysteria*

The baby, who turned 16 this month, has for all intents and purposes finished his formal studies of English grammar and composition.  Wanting, however, to do a quick review of all the bits and pieces, we're now making our way orally through a textbook I likely picked up in a library sale and hadn't employed in the education of any of the other four.  It's proven itself to be a handy tool for the purpose of review.

This morning we literally skipped the section on double negatives, as "We don't have no extra chairs," is clearly non-standard and gave us both a chuckle.  No instruction from that section was necessary.  Moving to Placement of Modifiers, I said it was a section worthy of review, for it's sometimes tricky.  I didn't know it could move either of us far beyond chuckles.

Non-standard sentences were provided, and the student was to rewrite them, placing the modifying phrases in the proper positions for clear meaning.

1.  The famous explorer told us about running into a family of baboons in today's assembly.

This should have been a clue there would be a quick end to English today.

3.  The fashion display attracted an enormous crowd in the department store window.
5.  The teacher required three articles from magazines on Pike's Peak.
7.  You are the only one who can do a double somersault on the diving team.
9.  The woman was reading a mystery story in a yellow dress.
10.  We saw a meteor falling through a large telescope.

Maybe we didn't need placement of modifiers review after all.  And I was laughing so hysterically, what I needed was oxygen.  I made one attempt at moving on to participial phrases, but that family of baboons in the assembly wouldn't stop somersaulting through my mind.  Gasping for breath, I said, "I can't do this any more," tossed the fabric scrap into the book, and closed it.  [When I grow up, I'll make some real bookmarks, although rag rug strips, torn pieces of yarn labels, and folded Aldi ads can do the job.]

Thanks to the baboons and that book wearing a yellow dress, we've an extra-long lunch break today.  Not enough time, however, to get to Pike's Peak for a magazine, so I think I'll watch a another crochet tutorial.

O that there were such an heart in them, that they would fear me, and keep all my commandments always, that it might be well with them, and with their children for ever!  Deuteronomy 5:29

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