I support grammar. I think that we should teach grammar in schools. It is the building blocks of our language. We need to know how formulate a sentence. In the way that scientists learn a formula to understand problems, we must learn the formula to construct a sentence. We need to learn the basics in order to manipulate them to develop. I believe that language and grammar do grow and develop but to understand how you first need to know how they started.
Here is my problem though, this past week I got an essay back and for the first time in a long time grammar made me angry. This essay was not for an English class, it was to match a theory learned in class to real life and that is what I did. I worked very hard on the essay making sure to think in a new way about the topic and discuss interesting points. It may not have been the most beautiful essay but it had exactly what he asked for. When I got the essay back my professor gave me a 100%, he said that it was a wonderful essay that he loved reading it because it showed my knowledge on the topic along with mixing it with a very interesting scenario making it fun to read. Then under those comments he subtracted 15 points from my grade because my “paragraphs were too long.” Really? Is there some kind of terrible law with paragraph length that I am unaware of?
My argument with teaching grammar is that it is needed in order to teach people the most effective way to communicate in a language. It is then up to the student to manipulate the words into something beautiful. If we spoke the way that grammar was taught then we would have a boring language, and with words like onomatopoeia we can’t make ourselves boring. Grammar should be scrutinized only if it stops someone from understanding the message. If I do not have a verb in my sentence it is very different than having too many sentences. So teachers should teach students how to use grammar to their benefit, how to take the elements of a sentence and mix them to make your writing smooth and interesting. Grammar should be used to teach rather than a punishment.