The scrap about so-called scrapping of grammar

by Leigh Andrews on 04 March 2011

ImageIt’s funny how people who work in the media industry often just don’t have the time to watch, read or listen to the news – but our reliance on social media means we don’t miss a thing. I’ve written before about how social media addiction isn’t just about keeping up with the intricacies of my friends lives (for the most part), but also for the fact that it’s possibly the easiest way to see which news and entertainment headlines have tickled their fancy, that you may well have missed in your busy day.

Case in point, my Facebook news feed last night alerted me to the fact that there was quite the furore brewing regarding the potential ‘scrapping of grammar teaching’ from Grade 10 upwards (that’s Standard 8, to those of you as old-school as me.) News24 quotes the National Professional Teachers’ Organisation of SA (Naptosa), which stated that such a move would ‘negatively affect literacy, particularly among second language students’ First comment in the thread that caught my attention was ‘The kids don’t need no edukaishun’ Granted, the comment was made in jest to prove a point, but that, my friends, is the crux of the matter. Probably the only reason that particular comment stuck out at me above all others is the intentionally incorrect spelling.

I remember my horror at learning of the ‘kill the apostrophe movement’ and at picking up on glaring spelling errors in certain media. A move away from teaching the basics at schools will surely result in even more of these, especially when coupled with the fact that we current technological inventions are symbolic of the move towards a word-centric society where we read more on screens of varying sizes than ever before.

Then again, there’s the movement of thought that states you can still read words clearly if the first and last letters are in the correct place. So maybe a lack of teaching the intricate bits of English won’t have quite the disastrous effect everyone’s predicting… especially if the basics are already in place.

Share your thoughts below.

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