Diagramming Sentences

One of the reasons I chose the blog name “Musings of an old English Teacher” is because I consider myself to be a bit old fashioned when it comes to teaching.  There are several methods, concepts, etc. that have gone away and are no longer taught, but I believe that they actually were a good thing and we are missing out on them.  One of those is diagramming sentences.


I loved diagramming sentences and looked forward to any day that we were able to do this in class.  No this wasn’t hard, in fact, I found it more like a puzzle or a logic puzzle. As long as you knew the parts of speech and a sentence you would have no problem putting this together.  I do believe that diagramming a sentence was a visual activity for those students that needed a picture instead of just reading it.  This helped you to see what words were what part and to put everything together.  When you learned to diagram sentences your sentences made sense.

Now instead we complain that people can’t write a coherent sentence. Maybe if we spent more time in the upper elementary and middle school years diagramming sentences we wouldn’t have this problem.

Does anyone else miss this as much as I do?  If there is something that you miss from the previous time periods what is it?  Why do you miss it?


6 thoughts on “Diagramming Sentences

  1. I didn’t know that diagraming sentences had fallen out of favor. Seems like a method that would work with some learning styles more than others.


  2. We diagrammed sentences, too, but I always wondered about the point. It wasn’t something that I found enjoyable, but I didn’t despise it either. It was more of a chore, busy work. If it is ever brought bavk, then it should be for the kid with that kind of mind. And, it should naturally connect to writing so the purpose is clearly established….


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