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Many things, much stuff!

After my raving and whinging, sometimes it's nice just to relay a little story - something positive :-)


We don't "do" formal grammar here. No workbooks or worksheets - can you imagine the tears?? I just correct written or verbal errors as we go along (presuming of course, that I know that there has been a mistake made...). They read a lot. And consequently, on tests like NAPLAN, my kids do extremely well in the grammar and punctuation section.

However, it has been bugging me no end that Wombat Girl continuously makes the same grammatical mistake about quantifiers (I know that's what this issue is called now, because I just looked it up!!): "Why are so much people poor?". I gently correct: "So many people".  "There are so much berries on that tree!". "There are so many berries". Etc etc.  It is getting a little repetitive! And I didn't really have a good explanation for her about what to use where - it was something I knew "instinctively" (rather than actually knowing they were called quantifiers and in what circumstances they are used). Maybe if we had done some workbooks, she would know the difference:


Anyway, I was extremely grateful that Video Boy was able to come to my aid in this ongoing issue. He explained it like this:

"Well you see, Wombat Girl, it relates to whether words are thing-like or stuff-like. If it is thing-like, then you have many things. If it is stuff-like, then you have much stuff."  Ummm. Wow. Thanks Video Boy!!

Now, he got this "thing" and "stuff" idea from the Quantum Physics DVD we are watching from Great Courses. Thing-like relates to discrete particles - things you can count (like electrons) and stuff-like relates to continuous objects that have volume or space, but aren't discrete (like waves). I was totally amazed at his ability to comprehend those concepts, remember them from a few months ago, relate a maths/science concept to grammar and then be able to explain it concisely and clearly to Wombat Girl who completely understood what he was on about and hopefully will be able to put this new information to good grammatical use (time will tell!).


The other totally cool thing was we had not done a worksheet or lesson or any other formal learning about this physics concept. We watched (and chatted about) a DVD we watch for "fun" (I know what you're thinking - but we are maths/science nerds!). That's all we did. But it was enough for my bright spark to comprehend, remember, generalise and explain a quite complicated concept.

I will also remember that when I rely on instinct rather than some great pool of knowledge of grammar (that I don't possess!), there are resources on the web! Check this out:

Again, who needs a worksheet?

That is why going to school didn't always work for us and doing school at home doesn't either - there is brilliance in there, but worksheet/drill would kill it. It doesn't make the learning any less valid that we have no written "product" of our learning. We don't have to "do school" to learn! Learning happens all the time in a range of different situations (especially if you fill a home with love and learning opportunities). All I have to do is remember all the learning that happens and manage to record it somehow to show the powers that be that we are learning.

So many good reasons to homeschool!! And so many great resources!! So much to learn!


  1. Ingi
    I think you may like some of the living grammar books listed here (3rd post)

    I have Grammarland and Eats, shoots and leaves.

    1. He he - we actually have Eats, Shoots and Leaves! And I've heard of Grammarland (it reminds me of Flatland) - so I think we may have to acquire that!! Thanks :-)

    2. Oh look - I already have the PDF!! And if anyone was interested in doing Grammarland worksheets, follow

  2. Go Video Boy!
    Just before I opened your post I was trying to decide on what to remove from our schedule to free up some time for other stuff we want to do. We do lots of grammar, but I've always wondered if it would just come naturally with reading good books. More than once I've had pro writers (who homeschool) on forums tell me not to worry about it so much.
    Great post!

    1. Well, for us (for the most part!) it has come from just reading and my nagging. I still recall my mum correcting me whenever I asked "how come?"..."why?"!!

  3. Absolutely irrelevant to anything in this post: I used to have pants like that.

    I was wicked cool.


    1. Well, of course you were - Hammer Time! I can openly admit here to having "U Can't Touch This" on my iPod running playlist (along with more than a few other 80's classics).

  4. lol that's brilliant... well done video boy :)

    1. I tend to agree he's briliant...but I'm a bit biased!!


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