Note: This book on grammar and mechanics instruction is by Doug Stark. Dave Stuart Jr., who teaches down the hallway from Doug and uses the methods described in the book, is acting as the book's publisher.
This book contains 80 pages of mechanics warm-ups that are designed to sharpen how you teach solid, conventional writing in your secondary ELA classes (ideal for grades 7-9). Prior to the warm-ups, the book contains a thorough introduction (which you can read, for free, here) that explains how to use the warm-ups (hint: not as keep-'em-busy worksheets!), the book includes the following units.
17 Units of Warm-ups
Unit 1 – Elements of a Complete Sentence
Unit 2 – Clauses and Phrases
Unit 3 – Using Relative Clauses
Unit 4 – Avoiding Sentence Fragments
Unit 5 – Compound Sentences
Unit 6 – Avoiding Run-Ons
Unit 7 – Commas
Unit 8 – Semicolons and Colons
Unit 9 – Apostrophes
Unit 10 – Dashes
Unit 11 – Avoiding Wordiness and Redundancy
Unit 12 – Using Active Voice
Unit 13 – Awkward Constructions and Unclear Sentences
Unit 14 – Parallelism
Unit 15 – Subject-Verb Agreement
Unit 16 – Pronoun-Antecedent Agreement
Unit 17 – Avoiding Illogical Sentences
- Plus 3 supplemental activities that can be used to mix it up in your classroom.
What are other people saying?
"I purchased Doug's book and just looking at it, I am hearing angels in the background. This is exactly what I was looking for!" --Karri from Salem, OR
"I loved reading Doug's process of making these and then teaching and refining them." -- Kim from MI
"Our whole department has been using it for the past nine weeks, and I think it's the perfect amount of time on each topic" --Anonymous
"I have loved this program. The explanations and repetition help the kids. I have shared my excitement with this program with many colleagues. Thank you." --Anonymous
"I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart... because this is exactly what I've been looking for. Jeff Anderson's work is part of my lessons; however, I have never put it all together as neatly and succinctly as [this]. Thank you for making this available to us. I shared the work with the LA teacher on the other team, and she almost immediately downloaded the book as well!" --Maura from VA
Questions & Answers
What if I want copies of this for a large group of teachers?
We do offer bulk pricing; for more information, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
How do I use the warm-ups?
On Dave's blog, we have published the Introduction to Mechanics Instruction that Sticks. Click here, and scroll down to "How to Use the Warm-Ups."
When do you have time to put these together?
Our school has a policy for research and publishing that we comply with. This is why Doug puts these together during the summertime from the comfort of his home. MITS is prepared without the use of district resources, and our district's employees get free access to any of the MIT products.
What if I don't like it?
We have a simple guarantee policy: if you're not happy, email us (email@example.com), and we'll immediately give you a refund.
What if it changes the course of my life and my classroom ends up being the focus of a Hollywood teacher movie?
Give Doug a line in the credits.
What if I think something should be added?
These warm-ups are what they are because Doug has tweaked them for years. With that said, we realize that we may have had blind spots in creating this book, so we'd be happy to hear from you. Email Doug at doug.stark1974_at_gmail.com.
What if I want to edit the warm-ups?
Although we think the warm-ups are pretty versatile as is, we've included an editable (.doc) version of the warm-ups as well.
Why isn't this product priced at Pay What You Want?
Because, in addition to this being a clear way of thinking about and teaching conventions, it's also 17 units of actual, you-can-print-them-off-and-use-them-as-teaching-tools-tomorrow warm-ups.