Monday, 30 September 2013

Grammar book review

Grammar. Love it or hate it, we know we have to learn it!

   To be honest, I really don't remember anything about grammar from my own school days. I guess that says it all!

However, I have always considered my grammar skills are not too bad....a little rough around the edges maybe, but I don't think I am that I? (don't answer that!) After all, I can formulate simple sentences that you can understand...right! (I am becoming increasingly nervous as I continue to write this post!)

I have to admit, since really looking at grammar for my children, I know my grammar knowledge is shockingly bad....but that's nothing that can not be fixed inshaAllah with a do-it-yourself crash course a.k.a.....internet research and a couple of handy books!

To help me in my grammar quest, I've recently purchased a few books to assist, so I thought I'd write a quick review of how useful I'm finding them.

The first one is the Oxford Primary Grammar, Punctuation and Spelling Dictionary. I've linked it to Amazon where you can see preview sample pages.
It has been designed to help support children aged 7-11 so I guess that is key-stage 2 (if you are interested in curriculum).
I actually quite like this one. Its simple and gives you a very broad overview of the important grammar essentials. Its easy for children to pick up and great for you as an education facilitator if you don't know much about grammar yourself. It serves great use as a basic introduction.
The pages are well laid out with clear basic explanations and simple examples. I like it, and it will defiantly come in useful for us inshaAllah.

The second one is The Usborne guide to English Punctuation. The content of this one is well written and the examples are well thought, clear and simple. The only thing I feel is there is a little too much going on, on each page. But all in all, a useful book.
There is more information in this book than the Oxford Primary, and although I can't find what age /stage it has been designed for, I'd say its probably for secondary stage. Although that is not to say primary age children would not benefit....they will! (and so will clueless grown ups like me!).

The last one, is Help your kids with Spelling and grammar. I couldn't find it on Amazon so just linked to the book people where I purchased it from for only £3.99.
This, is an excellent 251 page book...especially for us grammar-phobic grown ups! It goes through literally every part of grammar with full, clear explanations and examples.
 As the title explains "help your kids...."  it is designed for parents in mind.
 However its carefully planned pages are visually stimulating and easy on the eye, making it great for older children to pick up and work through.
 I have to say, its easily a self-study guide for both parents and children alike.

It is well laid out, visually stimulating, easy to read and goes into quite some detail to give you enough of a solid understanding of each rule / concept, making it ideal for older children....and bored grown ups!

If you want only one good book, then this one out of the three here, is far superior.

I'd say this is a really useful book to have on the shelf, and at the discount price, its excellent value Alhamdulillah.

Since purchasing these books, my grammar-phobia has somewhat subsided Alhamdulillah, and I actually believe this is something that once you have mastered the rules, then you have mastered the rules! Its something which can be easily learnt when the children are older in a much shorter time than what I feel I am facing if I continue to try to teach my now 7 year old.
So, although we have these books on our shelf, they are there to be picked up and glanced through casually, leaving a further in depth study a few years down the road, when it can be learnt over a much shorter time-frame with a greater degree of understanding inshaAllah.

So, on that final note, let's go eat, kids.


  1. Assalaamu alaikum :)

    Great post :) I always find book reviews very helpful, thank you for taking the time :)
    Jazzakillahu khair

    From a fellow "grammar-phobe"
    Just kidding it's Umm Imaan :)

  2. jazakAllah khair, I was thinking of getting the Carol Vorderman one but now not so sure, because I also agree that they don't need to spend soooo long on the grammar at this stage!!

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  4. Asalamu alaykum Sis, this has been really helpful, mashaaAllah. I'm at that stage with my 9 and 10 year old where we are having to go into greater detail in their English studies, so these books seem to be the perfect starting point.


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