Emma Peplow

From our earliest days of elementary school we take spelling tests.  In fact, for the first couple of years, the spelling of the word is stressed above even the definition.  Along with spelling we are taught basic grammar rules, giving us all of the basic rules we need to write elementary level papers. 

If your reading this article, you have sat in on all of these class lectures about the importance of spelling and grammar.  If you did not recognize my incorrect use of the word “your,” as “your” is the possessive form of “you” and I was referring to the contraction “you’re” meaning “you are,” then obviously you have suppressed all of that elementary school grammar knowledge. 

But don’t feel bad if you didn’t recognize my flagrant disregard for proper grammar; you weren’t aware that when you opened the paper to this article their would be a test on elementary school material!  But now that I’ve caught your attention, I’m sure you noticed my incorrect use of the word “their” as of course we all learned in elementary school that the “their” I just incorrectly used is the possessive form of “they,” whereas “they’re” would be a contraction meaning “they are,” while the real word I was searching for was “there” referring to a location or stating something in respect to something else.  If you missed that grammar error to, its okay, there will be many more. 

Now that I have you on your toes, I’m positive you were able to catch my shameless debauchery of the English language in the previous sentence.  For one, I used the incorrect form of “to.”  There is the number “two,” the preposition “to,” and of course the word I was looking for “too” which is tacked onto the end of a list, almost as a substitute for the word “also.”  Finally, in case you didn’t guess, my other error was in my use of “its.”  “Its” is the possessive form of “it.”  The correct word choice would have been “it’s” which is the contraction for “it is.”

Now I know what you’re thinking at this point in the article.  Why am I being retaught basic grammar rules?  If I am off by a letter, or forget an apostrophe, or use a homonym in place of the correct word, people reading my work will understand what I mean in the context that it is in.  Although this may be true, incorrect implementation of basic grammar rules is extremely distracting and makes you look highly unintelligent.  As Editor-in-Chief, I read, re-read, and re-read again every article.  The first thing I notice when reading through someone’s work is the spelling and grammar.  No matter what brilliant, groundbreaking point you are conveying or how much eloquence and rich language it is being said with, I become so distracted by one’s incorrect usage of grammar and incorrect spelling that all other matters of the paper seem trivial. 

So, please, I am literally begging everyone reading this article to take an extra second when composing a written document, whether it be a 5 character text message or a 1500 word essay to remind yourself of the correct spelling and grammar rules being learned right now by children half your age.  On behalf of every educator who has ever attempted to preserve the sacred grammar of the English language, and everyone who has ever witnessed the injustice of reading a written work with poor grammar and spelling, I ask you to please work to preserve the lost art of grammar. 

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