Terminology Torment

Last weekend , my young son came home from school with his SPAG homework (spelling, punctuation and grammar for those of you not ‘in the know’ of current primary school teaching methods!). Being a bit of a grammar fiend, helping him should have been right up my street! Famous last words! I was met by a sea of technical terms, being asked to help him label subordinate conjunctions, identify fronted adverbials and recognise compound sentences. All well and good for a language expert you might say, but in a generation where far too many still struggle to read and write properly, surely there’s a lot to be said for focusing learning on how to use language properly rather than giving everything a label?