grammar, punctuation and spelling

grammar, punctuation and spelling

Posted in the Burkesville Forum

bob

Santa Barbara, CA

#1 Nov 12, 2012
On a public forum like this, spelling and punctuation don't matter much - as long as the meaning of the post can be puzzled out fairly easily. Who really cares? I make spelling mistakes myself all the time. I'll almost certainly make at least one mistake in this very post. But I do know the difference between their, there, and they're. I know the difference between its and it's - even if I may not always type them correctly. These rules are second nature to me because our teachers would come down on us hard if we made a mistake. But is that true for kids graduating from High School here in Burkesville today? Are our teachers doing a better job of teaching our kids to use proper standards of English grammar, spelling and punctuation?

I worry about how well our kids are being taught in school and in the community, and the examples we set here on the internet. I hear and see young people making these same mistakes - mistakes that are serious enough to prevent them from getting and keeping a job in business or industry outside of Burkesville.

I expect older adults from this area to have a relatively poor grasp of Standard English punctuation and grammar because, in years past, we were so isolated that our country dialect drifted pretty far away from Standard English. I don't think less of an adult who doesn't know the rules. We are all products of how we were taught. But in this world today, with few career opportunities here at home, our kids have to broaden their horizons. We can't let our kids be as indifferent to grammar and punctuation as we are.

Nearly everyone loves a country accent. A warm, friendly country accent is a sweet thing to hear and well received everywhere in the US. It gives listeners an immediate understanding of our cultural roots.

But improper use of English grammar, spelling, and punctuation rules highlights our ignorance of the written language used in American business and academia. If our kids make the kinds of mistakes commonly seen here while writing a resume, filling out a job application or in any written communication in a business or academic setting, they will be labeled as ignorant and doors will automatically be shut in their faces.
Totally

Canton, OH

#2 Nov 13, 2012
I agree. There's a difference between ignorance and stupidity. Ignorance sounds worse but to me ignorance is never having the opportunity to gain more knowledge of a subject and stupidity is having the opportunity but choosing not to take advantage of it. For example, proper English and grammar. "Country" or "southern" dialects are charming, but "hick" or "hillbilly" are not. Our children are taught proper grammar, but when they and others around them continue to say words and phrases like "tooken", "I done told you", or "it weren't there" we'll never be taken seriously and be successful. Some misspellings are nation-wide, but I still despise seeing an apostrophe used before a plural and the misuse if your, there and their synonyms. It also irks me to see someone misspell a word while trying to be impressive. If hit aint spelt rite dont stik hit inna sentense!!
Totally

Canton, OH

#3 Nov 13, 2012
Oh, and I also meant to say my grandmother only had a third grade education but was one of the smartest people I have ever known, including my college professors!!
Hello

Greensburg, KY

#4 Nov 13, 2012
I couldn't figure out what "holler" meant when I moved here. Then I realized it was hollow. Part of the problem is the education they are receiving in the school system. Many of the teachers/ administrators have taken phonics out of the classroom and do no speak correct grammar. Their writing skills are lacking as well. Start with the school system if you would like to make a difference.
Are You Serious

Burkesville, KY

#5 Nov 13, 2012
I think it is funny that everyone, so far, that has replied in this topic has made an error in their posting. I also believe that some of the errors are being introduced by the device used to make the posts. The screens are so small a user can't see the text they're posting until it is on the web site. Thumb typing has also added errors to posts with such small keyboards being used these days. Spell checking won't find misused words and causes people to publish without rereading their texts.
bob wrote:
On a public forum like this, spelling and punctuation don't matter much - as long as the meaning of the post can be puzzled out fairly easily.
"don't" should not have been used, it should have the verb "doesn't" since the subject of the sentence is plural (spelling & punctuation).
Totally wrote:
Some misspellings are nation-wide, but I still despise seeing an apostrophe used before a plural and the misuse if your, there and their synonyms.QUOTE]

"if" should have been "of" in this sentence.

[QUOTE who="Hello"]Many of the teachers/ administrators have taken phonics out of the classroom and do no speak correct grammar.
"no" should not be used, it should be "not" in this sentence.

“THE WEAK CAN NEVER FORGIVE”

Since: Feb 08

Location hidden

#6 Nov 13, 2012
The assault on the English language isn't exclusive to southern people. Rapping, "gangsta" bluster and rape of the language by those immersed in that genre is just as nauseating.
of course

Tompkinsville, KY

#7 Nov 13, 2012
Leave it to blowbag to say something racist.

“THE WEAK CAN NEVER FORGIVE”

Since: Feb 08

Location hidden

#8 Nov 13, 2012
Guess what moron, the genre isn't exclusive to any race. Leave it to you to say something stupid.
Ridge Girl

Louisville, KY

#9 Nov 13, 2012
Are You Serious wrote:
I think it is funny that everyone, so far, that has replied in this topic has made an error in their posting. I also believe that some of the errors are being introduced by the device used to make the posts. The screens are so small a user can't see the text they're posting until it is on the web site. Thumb typing has also added errors to posts with such small keyboards being used these days. Spell checking won't find misused words and causes people to publish without rereading their texts.
<quoted text>
"don't" should not have been used, it should have the verb "doesn't" since the subject of the sentence is plural (spelling & punctuation).
<quoted text>
"no" should not be used, it should be "not" in this sentence.
Actually "don't" is the correct verb since that's the helping verb to use with plurals.(ie. he doesn't but they don't).
Totally

Canton, OH

#10 Nov 13, 2012
Come on guys, I'm not talking about a single simple error, especially in a casual forum like this. Yes, thumb-dialing causes many errors and I have turned the spell-check off on my phone. I use my phone for both calling and texting at work and I have no problem with abbreviations to speed things up. I'm talking about going to school related events in other counties and feeling embarrassed by some of the parents and students I'm with because of their speech and behaviors. There are certain counties in this state that are considered sub-par in academics based on their refusal to even attempt to have any education and class when they go to the larger more urban areas. I'm not saying to be something we're not, just show our best side.
bob

Santa Barbara, CA

#11 Nov 14, 2012
Are You Serious wrote:
I think it is funny that everyone, so far, that has replied in this topic has made an error in their posting.

"bob wrote:
On a public forum like this, spelling and punctuation don't matter much - as long as the meaning of the post can be puzzled out fairly easily."

"don't" should not have been used, it should have the verb "doesn't" since the subject of the sentence is plural (spelling & punctuation).
Actually, your mistake may be the one of the most common mistakes we make here. One that makes the rest of America think we are ignorant - the incorrect use of the verb "to do".

People from here often say something like "He don't know what he's talking about." - and you hear it so frequently it sounds correct to you. Similarly, "He done his best." is used. But the correct sentences are "He DID his best." and "He DOESN'T" know what he's talking about."

You are correct that my subject is plural because of the use of the word "and". But "don't" is the correct plural form of the verb. "They don't know what they're doing." is correct.

Doesn't is singular.

This is the correct grammar: "TNBlowfly and Bob don't agree on politics."
bob

Santa Barbara, CA

#12 Nov 14, 2012
I meant to type: Actually, your mistake may be one of the most common ...

There is a difference between a typo - caused by haste, sloppy typing, or poor proofreading - and simply not knowing the correct grammar.
Smarter

United States

#13 Nov 14, 2012
bob wrote:
I meant to type: Actually, your mistake may be one of the most common ...
There is a difference between a typo - caused by haste, sloppy typing, or poor proofreading - and simply not knowing the correct grammar.
Damn, I wish I was as smart as you guys think you are! Who the hell cares here on Topix? I bet there is a web site forum somewhere in cyberspace where all you educated idiots can figure out which one is the smartest! Go find it!
bob

Santa Barbara, CA

#14 Nov 14, 2012
I don't really care about how we write on Topix, except for the lessons we're teaching our kids by the bad examples we set here and elsewhere. I'm talking about how we speak and write in the real world. Topix is just a forum where we discuss the world. And since it contains only written communications, it illustrates the actual state of our ability to use the English language.

Cumberland County kids, graduates of CCHS, are severely handicapped if they've learned to write and speak like you hear every day in Burkesville - unless they plan to spend the rest of their lives in Burkesville. Nothing wrong with that, but most parents want their kids to have more options. If they write and speak like many adults here, getting a mid or upper level job with a major corporation, advancing beyond enlisted ranks in the military, or getting into graduate school are not among their options.
bob

Santa Barbara, CA

#15 Nov 14, 2012
Not to mention high tech or information technology jobs. These and many other jobs requires precision in language. If after 20 years someone still doesn't know the difference between their, there, or they're, or between its and it's, then no company is going to hire them to write code or communicate with its customers.

It's very common to see "Excellent communications skills" listed among job requirements. That means more than being likable or having a warm personality. It also means knowing how to speak and write following the rules of English grammar, spelling, vocabulary, and punctuation - something you can't fake.

“THE WEAK CAN NEVER FORGIVE”

Since: Feb 08

Location hidden

#16 Nov 14, 2012
Blame the person young or old that
speaks so poorly. Blame their parent[s}, blame George w. Bush, blame me if. You wish. I think the decline in the communication skills of our students starts at home. Kids are allowed to have tv as a babysitter, without regard to the content of the shows the children watch. The child is placed into a school system with many teachers who aren't competent to teach and have no personal desire to actually teach the kids, just to earn a check and accrue PDO's, sick days and slide towards tenure. Parents, or a parent in many cases are content to let the child fend for their self, sink or swim either
way the check keeps getting deposited and the EBT card get loaded every month! Is it any wonder kids can't spell talk or master the basic 3 R's.
bob

Santa Barbara, CA

#17 Nov 15, 2012
Can't argue with that - except for the unnecessary shot at food stamps as a cause. I know plenty of kids from hard working families who still can't fill out a job application. Great teachers should be paid very very well. Teachers who can't speak and teach Standard English themselves should be fired.

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