From Texting to Teaching: Grammar Instruction in a Digital Age

From Texting to Teaching: Grammar Instruction in a Digital Age

by Jeremy Hyler, Troy Hicks


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Don’t blame technology for poor student grammar; instead, use technology intentionally to reach students and actually improve their writing! In this practical book, bestselling authors Jeremy Hyler and Troy Hicks reveal how digital tools and social media – a natural part of students’ lives – can make grammar instruction more authentic, relevant, and effective in today’s world.

Topics Covered:

  • Teaching students to code switch and differentiate between formal and informal sentence styles
  • Using flipped lessons to teach the parts of speech and help students build their own grammar guides
  • Enlivening vocabulary instruction with student-produced video
  • Helping students master capitalization and punctuation in different digital contexts

Each chapter contains examples, screenshots, and instructions to help you implement the ideas. With the strategies in this book, you can empower students to become better writers with the tools they already love and use daily. Additional resources and links are available on the book’s companion wiki site:

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781138949287
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Publication date: 05/11/2017
Pages: 152
Product dimensions: 6.70(w) x 9.60(h) x 0.40(d)

About the Author

Jeremy Hyler is a middle school English teacher and a teacher consultant for the Chippewa River Writing Project, a satellite site of the National Writing Project. He is co-author with Troy Hicks on Create, Compose, Connect: Reading, Writing, and Learning with Digital Tools (Routledge, 2014).

Troy Hicks is a Professor of English and education at Central Michigan University, and Director of the Chippewa River Writing Project. He has authored or co-authored nine books, and over 30 journal articles and book chapters for teachers and other educators.

Table of Contents

Notes on the Book



Meet the Authors

Foreword by Liz Kolb

Chapter 1 - What’s the Matter with the Teaching of Grammar?

  • The Great Grammar Debate, Part 1: 1890s to 1990s
  • The Great Grammar Debate, Part 2: 100 Years and Counting
  • The Great Grammar Debate, Part 3: Here Comes the Common Core
  • Rethinking Grammar Instruction in a Single Year: A Guide to the Rest of the Book

Chapter 2: An Approach to Teaching Grammar with Digital Tools

  • What the Research Says: The (Non) Effects of Text Speak
  • Redefining Grammar Instruction in a Digital Age
  • Triple E Framework: Engage, Enhance, Extend
  • Tools of the Trade: Technologies for Digital Grammar Instruction
  • Beginner: Getting Started with Screen Capture, Screencasting, and Annotation
  • Intermediate: Sharing Media and Assessing Students’ Understanding
  • Expert: Producing and Publishing More Enriched Media
  • And...We’re Off... Ready, Tech, Go!

Chapter 3: Learning the Parts of Speech with Flipped Lessons

  • What is Flipping the Classroom, Exactly?
  • Critiques of the Flipped Model
  • Digital Tools for Flipping Grammar
  • Building a Flipped Video Lesson
  • Working Through the Video: Steps for Student
  • Using Flipped Videos from Other Sources
  • Breaking it Down: Pronouns of the Personal Type
  • Before the Flipped Lesson
  • During the Flipped Lesson
  • After the Flipped Lesson
  • Building a Personal Grammar Guide
  • Adverbs and Adjectives
  • Final Thoughts and What’s Next

Chapter 4: Learning Sentence Style with Formal and Informal Writing

  • Code Switching
  • Compound, Complex, and Complete: Making Sentences Matter
  • Sentence Combining with Lino
  • I Tawt I Taw a Tweet Sentence
  • Sentence Hacking
  • Putting Lexile Leveling to Use for Writers
  • What’s Next

Chapter 5: Enlivening Vocabulary

  • The Struggle is Real
  • Building Vocabulary with Quizlet
  • Building "Study Sets" in Quizlet
  • Building Toward Assessment with Quizlet
  • Extensions for Quizlet
  • Breathing Life into Vocabulary with Video
  • The Vocabulary Video Assignment
  • Extensions and Adaptations
  • Student Vocabulary Growth Over Time
  • Final Thoughts

Chapter 6 – Mastering Mechanics: Capitalization and Punctuation

  • Capitalization
  • The Dreaded Pronoun: "i"
  • Capitalization Extensions
  • The Paradox of Punctuation
  • Taking Time to Pause with a Comma
  • Is it a Period? Is it a Comma? No, it’s a Semicolon!
  • Extensions and Adaptations
  • Final Thoughts

Chapter 7 - Assessing Grammar in a Digital Age

  • From Texting to Teaching: Four Tips
  • Dealing with Assessments
  • Summative Assessment through Portfolios
  • Student Reflections
  • Students Raise Their Voices: Asking For and Implementing Their Feedback

Afterword: Navigating Your Own Grammatical Journey


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