5 Ways to Fit Teaching Grammar Into Your Day

When it comes to teaching grammar, long gone are the days of saying take out your grammar book, turn to page 112, and complete Exercise 1. Most schools don't even have a grammar textbook or a grammar curriculum. This can make teaching grammar time-consuming and more difficult. We typically don't have time to devote blocks of our day to teaching grammar. So, we usually have to sacrifice something else in order to fit it in. What if I told you it doesn't have to be this way? We need to rethink the way we teach grammar in our classrooms!

Use these 5 easy ways to fit teaching grammar into your day for easy grammar instruction that fits seamlessly into your lesson plans.

Teaching grammar, although very important, used to be a frustration for me. With a focus on reading and math and no set grammar curriculum, it became a burden to figure out how and when to teach it.  After many years of experience, I've learned a few tricks for fitting grammar into my day without necessarily isolating the skill in its own block of time.  And, I've learned that teaching grammar can be so much fun too! Here are 5 ways to easily fit teaching grammar into your day.

1. Quick Games Fill Small Spots of Time

Games are always a good choice for providing instruction. Playing a game doesn't have to take a long time either. Some games can easily be played in just a few minutes. Simon Says is a great game that can be as long or short as you'd like. It is a great way to teach verbs, prepositions, or any other grammar skill that students can act out. And . . . the movement makes a great brain break too!

I also like to incorporate movement activities like Contractions Write the Room. It can be used as a traditional "write the room" activity or use the cards to play a game of Scoot.  

Quick games like this contractions write the room activity are an easy way to fit teaching grammar into your day.

Another one of my favorite whole-class games for teaching parts of speech is I Spy with a little 20 Questions thrown in. Students will take turns spying something and introduce it by naming its part of speech.  For example, someone says "I Spy a proper noun." Then the other students in the class get to ask 1 question each to figure out what the student was thinking of. After each question, the student gets to take a guess. 

As students guess and ask questions, I can reinforce the definition of the part of speech to the whole class. By listening to the questions they ask and their guesses I can really see who understands the part of speech and who is struggling. We often play I Spy in those couple of minutes before leaving for lunch or when we are waiting in the hallway. By taking advantage of those little spots of time you can provide students with some great grammar review!

2. A Daily Morning Sort and Grammar Worksheets

Build a daily sort into your morning routine for effortless grammar practice.  As students arrive, teach them to unpack, make their lunch choice, and grab one card from the morning sort and place it in a category.  

Later, during your morning meeting or ELA block take a few minutes to review the sort.  You can ask specific students to explain why they placed their cards in a specific category or have the students do a thumbs up / thumbs down check of all the cards. By adding the most time-consuming part of the activity to the daily morning routine you can quickly and easily review the skill later.

Daily morning sort and grammar worksheets like these will help you effortlessly fit teaching grammar into your day each and every day of the week.

Using printable grammar worksheets is another way to add grammar to that morning routine. Build in grammar morning work one or two days a week.  Printable worksheets are a perfect way to provide students with the practice they need to make grammar concepts stick.  

3. Teaching Grammar Through Literature

Instead of adding another instructional block to your day, weave grammar in with another activity!  It is easy to intertwine grammar into your ELA block when you choose a reader, story, or read-aloud that is rich in the skill you are covering. For example, if you are working on nouns and verbs choose a text that emphasizes them. As you are reading, stop and ask questions like "What did the cat do? Is jump a noun or verb?"  This intentional questioning allows you to work on reading comprehension skills and grammar skills at the same time.

Fit teaching grammar into your day with daily literature blocks like read alouds or sight word reader activities.

Don't forget to connect grammar to sight word readers too! Whether you project them on the board or give each student their own copy,  you can seamlessly weave grammar concepts into your reading groups.  

After reading a page or the entire reader ask students to identify a grammar concept that focuses on the skill you are reviewing. Students can come up and circle it on the board or provide the page number from the reader. Finding and identifying grammar concepts in real books is a great way for students to see these concepts in action instead of in isolation. 

4. Incorporating Videos

Videos can be an effective method of instruction. But they can be used to help you save time too! While showing a video on a grammar concept, you as the teacher can be setting up or preparing the next activity.  Since students are naturally engaged in videos it is fairly easy to be able to grab what you need for the next activity while the video is playing. This type of multitasking in the classroom can save time, which definitely adds up! Brain Pop has some wonderful instructional videos for grammar concepts.  This free Noun video on Brain Pop Jr. is a great place to start!

Additionally, since we know our students love to sing and dance, a grammar video that includes student involvement is a great brain break too!  A simple YouTube search will provide you with tons of choices. Jack Hartmann is one of my favorites and his Noun Rap is one my students love!

5. Cross-Curricular Teaching

Cross-curricular teaching is not only a great way to save time, but it is also a wonderful teaching technique for students. Any time students can learn about a topic or subject from different viewpoints, we help them better understand it at deeper levels.

Try connecting grammar skills and concepts to science and social studies. As you learn about an important person from history have the students identify whether they are a simple noun or a proper noun.  Have students say a verb that describes an action this person did.  Students can also brainstorm adjectives to describe the person. 

Incorporate teaching grammar into your day by integrating it with other subjects like science and social studies.

In science, have students use complete sentences in their science journals. Then, on occasion, have them underline a target part of speech.  Science, observation, and adjectives go hand in hand! Make using adjectives a requirement when observing a science experiment.

Time-Saving Grammar Tip!

Teaching without a curriculum can take up a lot of your personal time.  If you are anything like me you spend way too much time trying to find engaging activities that fit a scope and sequence. I was tired of piecing together activities to make up for our lack of grammar curriculum. So, I created my own! With these in-depth grammar units and additional practice pages, I knew that my students had everything they needed to master important grammar skills all year long.

If you don't have a grammar curriculum then this Year Long Grammar Bundle is just for you!  It includes 18 grammar units and provides posters, games, hands-on activities, and printable practice pages in each unit. You will have everything you need to teach grammar and provide the needed practice.  Not to mention save yourself hours and hours of time this year searching for grammar activities.

Grab this Grammar Bundle full of 19 grammar resources you can use to fit teaching grammar into your day every day.

If you find yourself looking for additional grammar practice then you will want to look at this Grammar Worksheets Bundle.  Each and every first-grade grammar standard is covered. In fact, each standard has at least 4 pages of rigorous, skills-based printable activities. And since these standards cover common first-grade skills they can be used even if you don't follow Common Core Standards.

Grab this 1st Grade Grammar Year Long Grammar Worksheets Bundle for a full years worth of ways to fit teaching grammar into your day.

Save these Grammar Teaching Tips!

Save these 5 ways to fit teaching grammar into your day to your favorite classroom Pinterest board. You'll never wonder about how to teach grammar again. 
Looking for fun and easy ways to fit teaching grammar into your daily schedule? Use these no-hassle activities to seamlessly integrate teaching grammar into your lessons each and every school day this year. #thechocolateteacher #grammaractivities #grammaractivitiesforfirstgrade #firstgradegrammar

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