Little Copy Cats!
Having despaired for many years over the increasing number of children who leave school unable to write basic English, I realise how easy it has been to blame teachers. When my own daughter, in 1967, told me that it didn’t matter about the incorrect spelling in her homework, I was shocked. Apparently, greater emphasis was being put on what the child was trying to say. Fortunately, my daughter inherited my own love of the English language and enjoyed getting things right.
I was lucky, having a father who also loved the spoken and written word. From the time I started speaking, he made sure that my words were correctly used, in the correct order. He made it fun and explained rules of grammar as they cropped up, so, by the time I went from Infant to Elementary School, English Language classes held no terror for me; I actually enjoyed them.
Teachers have my sympathy. They have to deal with increasingly large classes and I believe that if parents conversed more with very young children – even toddlers, and guided them into speaking correctly, their written work would improve at school.
When the day comes that they decide to write books, the manuscripts they send to Publishers will be perfect and people like Penny will escape the most irksome part of their jobs!