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Grammar Fundamentals

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Open to: Grades 5-6

Prerequisites: Qualifying verbal and/or math score;  [Note: While students are not required to be verbal qualifiers, they do need to be ready to take on challenging assignments. Grammar FUNdamentals is not remedial and requires proficiency in writing in the English language.]

Course Format: Web-based classroom

Course Length: Session-based: 10 weeks (fall, winter, spring, late summer) or 12 weeks (early summer); Session Dates and Application Deadlines

Course Code: GFUN

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Course Description  

Description

In Grammar FUNdamentals, students learn the fine points of grammar and usage in an online classroom and practice their grammar skills by playing games and puzzles, guided by their CTY instructor with the assistance of Grammar Cat. 

Students have plenty of opportunities to display their understanding of the parts of speech; phrase, clause, and sentence structures; correct capitalization and punctuation, vocabulary building, and more, by completing ten writing assignments, unit tests, and exams. [This course is designed to meet the Common Core English Language Arts Standards for Grammar for middle school students.] Visit the HomePage of the Grammar FUNdamentals classroom.

This grammar course is designed to be an ungraded, enrichment course; instead of a grade, instructors provide specific feedback about each student's work at the end of each lesson and a detailed final evaluation at the end of the course. Parents or guardians may request a final grade if needed for school credit.

Materials Needed

Students are not required to purchase any additional materials or texts for this course.

Detailed Course Information

Course Details

Note: All polls, student forum posts, writing assignments, and unit tests are due by Sunday, midnight, in your time zone. The best preparation for the unit test is to study the Lessons carefully and play the grammar games, but how many times you play the grammar games is a decision left up to you.

Unit 1: NOUNS AND PRONOUNS

ASSIGNMENTS

1. Vote in Poll.
2. Post in Student Forum #1.

3. Read Lesson 1 carefully to learn about Noun Categories.
4. Play Grammar Games!
a) Common and Proper Noun Dunk (Double click on basketball to begin)
b) Common and Proper Nouns
c) Count and Noncount Nouns Pop-Up
d) Link Quantifiers with Count and Noncount Nouns
e) 30 Questions: About Noun Categories

5. Read Lesson 2 carefully to learn about Plural and Possessive Nouns.
6. Play Grammar Games!
a) Singular and Plural Nouns (Your choice, but Flashcards are most helpful)
b) Plural Noun Explorer
c) Plural Noun Tick Tack Toe (To begin, click on arrow located on top right of page; words will then appear in top left of page)
d) All about Nouns Rags to Riches

7. Read Lesson 3 carefully to learn about Pronouns.
8. Play Grammar Games!
a) Classify the Pronoun
b) 15 Questions about Indefinite Pronouns
c) Contraction Flashcards and more
d) 40 Questions: All about Pronouns

9. Complete Optional Wrap Up Activity: Unit 1 Crossword Puzzle
10. Review Grammar Cat's Tip about Writing and Writing Assignment #1.
11. Complete timed Open Note Unit Test that includes 50 multiple choice, true/false, and matching questions.

Unit 2: VERB CATEGORIES AND TENSES

ASSIGNMENTS

1. Vote in Poll.
2. Post in Student Forum #2.

3. Read Lesson 1 carefully to learn about Verb Categories.
4. Play Grammar Games!
a) Ten Questions: Transitive or Intransitive Verbs
b) Game: Linking or Active Verb
c) Game: Verb Power
d) Game: Rags to Riches Helping Verb Phrases
e) Game: Modal Verbs Challenge Board

5. Read Lesson 2 carefully to learn about Verb Tenses.
6. Play Grammar Games!
a) Game: Irregular Past Tense Verb Challenge Board
b) Game: Hidden Picture Simple and Perfect Tense Verbs
c) Game: Rags to Riches Verb Tense #1
d) Game: Rags to Riches Verb Tense #2
e) Simple and Progressive Verb Tenses Challenge Board

7. Complete Optional Wrap-Up Activity:Unit 2 Crossword Puzzle
8. Review Grammar Cat's Tip about Writing and Writing Assignment #2.
9. Complete timed Open Note Unit Test that includes 50 multiple choice, true/false, and matching questions.

Unit 3: ADJECTIVES AND ADVERBS
ASSIGNMENTS

1. Vote in Poll.
2. Post in Student Forum #3.

3. Read Lesson 1 carefully to learn about Adjectives.
4. Play Grammar Games!
a) 30 Questions: Comparative and Superlative Adjectives
b) Game: Definite and Indefinite Article Pop-Up

5. Read Lesson 2 carefully to learn about Adverbs.
6. Play Grammar Games!
a) Adverb Challenge Board
b) 10 Questions: Adjective or Adverb
c) Adjective and Adverb Rags to Riches
d) More Challenging Adjective and Adverb Rags to Riches

7. Complete Unit 3 Optional (But Highly Recommended) Review Activity: Cloze Encounters with a Ghost
8. Review Grammar Cat's Tip about Writing and Writing Assignment #3.
9. Complete timed Open Note Unit Test that includes 50 multiple choice, true/false, and matching questions.

Unit 4: PREPOSITIONS, CONJUNCTIONS, AND INTERJECTIONS, OH MY!
ASSIGNMENTS

1. Vote in Poll.
2. Post in Student Forum #4.

3. Read Lesson 1 carefully to learn about Prepositions.
4. Play Grammar Games!
a) Game: Object of the Preposition Pop-Up
b) Game: Preposition Desert
5. Read Lesson 2 carefully to learn about Conjunctions and Interjections.
6. Play Grammar Games!
a) Classify the Conjunction
b) Conjunction Pop-Up
c) Interjections, Conjunctions, and Prepositions Challenge Board

7. Complete Optional Review Wrap Up Activity: Classify the Word as Noun, Verb, Adjective, or Adverb.
8. Review Grammar Cat's Tip about Writing and Writing Assignment #4.
9. Complete timed Open Note Unit Test that includes 50 multiple choice, true/false, and matching questions.

Unit 5: PARTS OF THE SENTENCE AND SENTENCE STRUCTURE
ASSIGNMENTS

1. Vote in Poll.
2. Post in Student Forum #5
3. Read Lesson 1 carefully to learn about Parts of a Sentence

4. Let's play Grammar Games!
a) Game: Sentence Parts Rags to Riches
b)Game: Word Functions Rags to Riches
5. Read Lesson 2 carefully to learn about Sentences.
6. Let's play Grammar Games!
a) Game: Sentence Structure Rags to Riches
b)Game: Sentence Clubhouses

7. Review Diagramming PowerPoint and complete Optional Wrap-Up Activity: Special Simple and Compound Sentences Diagramming Challenge.
8. Review Grammar Cat's Tip about Writing and Writing Assignment #5.
9. Complete timed Midterm that includes 60 multiple choice, true/false, and matching questions.

Unit 6: IMPORTANT AGREEMENTS
ASSIGNMENTS

1. Vote in Poll A and Poll B.
2. Post in Student Forum #6.

3. Read Lesson 1 carefully to learn about subject-verb agreement.
4. Play Grammar Games!
a) Game: Subject-Verb Mix-Up (Simple)
b) Game: Subject-Verb Agreement Pop-up (Challenging)
5. Read Lesson 2 carefully to learn about pronoun-antecedent agreement and pronoun cases.
6. Play Grammar Games!
a) Game: Pronoun-Antecedent Rags to Riches
b) Game:Life on Pronoun Reef (easy)
c) Game: Pronoun Case Rags to Riches

7. Complete Wrap-Up Activity: Click on Start, and decide whether the indefinite pronoun in the middle should be placed in the Singular, Plural, or It Depends Dustbin.
8. Review Grammar Cat's Tip about Writing and Writing Assignment #6.
9. Complete timed Open Note Unit Test that includes 50 multiple choice, true/false, and matching questions.

Unit 7: IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT THE CLAUSE (NOT THE CLAWS ON MY PAWS)
ASSIGNMENTS

1. Vote in Poll.
2. Post in Student Forum #7.

3. Read Lesson 1 carefully to learn about independent and dependent clauses, and how they are used to create simple, compound, complex, and compound-complex sentences.
4. Play Grammar Games!
a) Game: Sentence Speedway
b) Game: Simple, Compound, and Complex Sentence Sort
c) Game: Fragment, Run on, Comma Splice, or Sentence Rags to Riches

5. Read Lesson 2 carefully to learn about adverbial, adjectival, and noun clauses.
6. Play Grammar Games!
a)Game: Adjectival, Adverbial, and Noun Clauses Rags to Riches
b) 20 Questions: Correctly Punctuating Essential and Nonessential Clauses
7. Review Diagramming PowerPoint and complete Optional Wrap-Up Activity: Diagramming Challenge.
8. Review Grammar Cat's Tip about Writing and Writing Assignment #7.
9. Complete timed Open Note Unit Test that includes 50 multiple choice, true/false, and matching questions.

Unit 8: CORRECT CAPITALIZATION AND PROPER PUNCTUATION  
ASSIGNMENTS

1. Vote in Poll.
2. Post in Student Forum #8.

3. Read Lesson 1 carefully to learn about capitalization and the apostrophe, period, semicolon, colon, question mark, and explanation point.
4. Play Grammar Games!
a) Game: Apostrophe Game
b) Game: Capitalization and Punctuation Rags to Riches
c) Game: Cloze Encounter with Punctuation

5. Read Lesson 2 carefully to learn about commas, hyphens, dashes, parenthesis, ellipses, and quotation marks.
6. Play Grammar Games!
a) Punctuation Java Games
b) Game: Punctuation Campground
c) Direct and Indirect Quotations Java Games

7. Complete Optional Wrap-up Activity: Comma Confusion Review and Game.
8. Review Grammar Cat's Tip about Writing and Writing Assignment #8.
9. Complete timed Open Note Unit Test that includes 50 multiple choice, true/false, and matching questions.

Unit 9: EXTRA HELPINGS
ASSIGNMENTS

1. Vote in Poll.
2. Post in Student Forum #9.

3. Read Lesson 1 carefully.
4. Play Grammar Games!
a) Game: Synonym Matching
b) Game: Antonym Matching
c) Homonym and Homophones Galore Java Games
d) Game: Homographs Challenge Board
e) Review List of Common Heteronyms
f) Suffix, Prefix, and Roots Java Games

5. Read Lesson 2 carefully.
6. Play Grammar Games!
a) Game: Idioms Rags to Riches
b) Game: Analogies Rags to Riches
c) Game: Spelling Bee Pop-Up
d) Game: Used and Abused Pop-Up
e) Game: Quotation Marks and Italicization Rags to Riches

7. Complete Wrap up Activity: Optional Crossword Puzzle
8. Review Grammar Cat's Tip about Writing and Writing Assignment #9.
9. Complete timed Open Note Unit Test that includes 50 multiple choice, true/false, and matching questions.

Unit 10: ADVANCED GRAMMAR = SOPHISTICATED WRITING
ASSIGNMENTS

1. Vote in Poll.
2. Post in Student Forum #10.

3. Read Lesson 1 carefully to learn about verbals such as gerunds, participles, and infinitives.
4. Play Grammar Games!
a) Game: Verbs and Verbals Jeopardy

5. Read Lesson 2 carefully to learn about double negatives, active and passive voice, subjunctive mood, and parallel construction.
6. Play Grammar Games!
a) Game: Avoiding the Attractions and Distractions of the Double Negative Rags to Riches
b) Game: Active and Passive Voice Pop-Up
c) Game: Subjunctive Pop-Up
d) Game: Show What You Know about Parallel Structure

7. Complete Optional Wrap up Activity: WordShoot Grammar Terms Review Game
8. Review Grammar Cat's Tip about Writing and Writing Assignment #10.
9. Complete timed Final Exam that includes 60 multiple choice, true/false, and matching questions.

Time Required

This course requires approximately three hours for each of the ten lessons. Students should expect to spend approximately 3 hours per week during the course.

Note: Students do not have to meet in the classroom at the same time. A student's written work can be posted in the virtual classroom at the student's convenience as long as deadlines are met.


About the Early Summer Session:

While the 12-week early summer session allows for 2 weeks total vacation, students enrolled in Grammar FUNdamentals are encouraged to work ahead or make up their work to try to keep up with their classmates whenever possible. Experience has shown that this course is most fun when all students are working on the same lesson. Students must notify the instructor at the course's start about any planned vacation dates and must meet scheduled due dates when they are not on vacation. [Students who make up their work can finish their early summer course in 10 weeks.]

If you have any questions, please contact us before applying at ctyonline@jhu.edu.

Sample Assignment

Demo

Sample Assignment: Unit 1: Nouns and Pronouns

Note: All polls, student forum posts, writing assignments, and unit tests are due by Sunday, midnight, in your time zone. The best preparation for the unit test is to study the Lessons carefully and play the grammar games, but how many times you play the grammar games is a decision left up to you.

1. Vote in Poll.

2. Post in Student Forum #1.

3. Read Lesson 1 carefully to learn about Noun Categories.

4. Play Grammar Games!
a) Common and Proper Noun Dunk (Double click on basketball to begin)
b) Common and Proper Nouns
c) Count and Noncount Nouns Pop-Up
d) Link Quantifiers with Count and Noncount Nouns
e) 30 Questions: About Noun Categories

5. Read Lesson 2 carefully to learn about Plural and Possessive Nouns.

6. Play Grammar Games!
a) Singular and Plural Nouns (Your choice, but Flashcards are most helpful)
b) Plural Noun Explorer
c) Plural Noun Tick Tack Toe (To begin, click on arrow located on top right of page; words will then appear in top left of page)
d) All about Nouns Rags to Riches

7. Read Lesson 3 carefully to learn about Pronouns.

8. Play Grammar Games!
a) Classify the Pronoun
b) 15 Questions about Indefinite Pronouns
c) Contraction Flashcards and more
d) 40 Questions: All about Pronouns

9. Complete Optional Wrap Up Activity: Unit 1 Crossword Puzzle

10. Review Grammar Cat's Tip about Writing and Writing Assignment #1.

11. Complete 50 question Unit 1 test in one 40-minute sitting.

Technical Requirements

This course requires a properly maintained computer with high-speed internet access and an up-to-date web browser (such as Chrome or Firefox). The student must be able to communicate with the instructor via email. Visit the Technical Requirements and Support page for more details.

 

Reviews

"My son said that reading his instructor's feedback was the highlight of his week.  It made him work harder and he did his best academic work.  Even though it was an online course and he never met his instructor in person, her correspondence with him was personal and attentive enough to make him feel as if he were a student in her traditional classroom."

"This was an awesome course. The contents were very well thought of, challenging and well paced. We had an excellent instructor - her feedback and support were very detailed and it felt like she gave our son a lot of individual attention. This was a very beneficial course for the entire family, since we got to brush up our grammar as well!" 

"My daughter has put in tremendous amount of effort into this course and based on my conversations with her, she was learning and having a lot of fun at the same time."

"This 10 week program was amazingly complete and thorough. How much my wife and I wish we had been able to take a course like this when we were my child's age. The mix of studies each week included online games, creative writing, and detailed constructive comments by the CTY instructor. We were thrilled that our 9-year old has become such a responsible, self-sufficient cyber student."

"I was completely surprised about the amount of grammar that was new to me. This course overall is amazing and I recommend that any student who has this opportunity should take it."
 
"My son enjoyed learning grammar from this course. His instructor's detailed positive feedback motivated him to apply himself to the course. As a result, his grammar skills have dramatically improved!" 
 
"I was impressed with how accessible and communicative the instructor was for this course. My daughter felt like she was a part of a real classroom and appreciated all of her instructor's feedback. No doubt, Ms. __ is the most impressive and knowledgeable grammar teacher my daughter has had to date. Thank you for allowing my daughter this educational opportunity." 
 
"The course was  challenging, instructive, and had excellent material....The components of the class were superb. Also, the instructor gave extremely thorough feedback, which my daughter plans to keep and refer back to for future courses. My daughter has a much higher level of understanding in all aspects of grammar. As a result, I can see her gained confidence in her  writing. This is what I had hoped for her to achieve from this course."
 
"I just want to say what a wonderful on-line grammar course this was.  My daughter really liked the course and I thought the instructor's involvement and feedback was wonderful."