Saturday, January 23, 2010


Here in this dyslexia blog article are some tips about teaching punctuation :

Punctuation can be a boring subject for children, but correct punctuation is vital to a good a piece of writing. Dyslexic children often find it difficult to use the right punctuation and very often miss it out completely!!. One way of making the rules stick is to play the Punctuation Kung Fu game.

Ros Wilson,who is well known in the UK, advocates the use of Kung Fu punctuation, as part of the writing programme, called Big Writing or FCOP. This writing approach is used in many UK primary schools.

In addition ,Phil Beadle a well – known inspirational teacher (the winner of the Secondary Teacher of the Year UK Award 2005) highlighted the use of Kung Fu punctuation in a UK TV programme where he taught pupils who were dismissed by others as The Unteachables !!

All punctuation marks are given corresponding kung-fu-style actions, accompanied by noises.

• Full stop : . throw a short, right-handed punch at the air in front of you. Make the noise, Ha!

• Comma : , with your right arm bent so that your hand is in front of your face, make a short twisting motion at the wrist to signify the comma shape. Make the noise, Shi!

• Semi-colon: ; do the full-stop punch, then the comma shape directly underneath it. Make the noises, Ha! Shi!

• Colon: follow the full-stop punch immediately with one directly beneath it. Make the noises, Ha! Ha!

• Question mark : ? separate the curly bit into three cutting movements with the hand: one horizontal left to right, one curved around, and one vertical coming from the bottom of the curved one. Then at the bottom of the shape you have just drawn in the air, bung in a full-stop punch. Make the noises, Shi! Shi! Shi! Ha!

• Exclamation mark : !! a long vertical slash, from top to bottom, followed by a full stop. Make the noises, Shiiiiii! Ha!

• Speech marks: “ stand on one leg, extend your arms diagonally to the skies and wiggle your index and middle fingers in an approximation of speech marks. Make the noise, Haeeeee!

• Apostrophe: ‘ with your right arm fully extended to the air, wiggle your index finger. Make the noise, Blubalubaluba! (This is the best I can do to approximate the sound you can make with your tongue when you flap it up and down against the inside of your lips.)

• Ellipsis: … three punches along a horizontal line. Make the noises, Ha! Ha! Ha!

• Brackets ( ) : using your left hand first, draw a curved convex line in the air; use your right hand to do the opposite motion for the closing bracket. Make the noises, Shi! Shi!

From .'Could do Better! Help your Kid Shine at School' by Phil Beadle (Doubleday)

Ideas on how to use Kung Fu Punctuation:

You can call out three punctuation marks and then your child has to put the moves and sounds for these together, in sequence, as quickly as they can.

You can later make up some sentences or a short story and leave out all the punctuation marks. Read through the sentences together and at the appointed places in the sentence get your child to do the kung-fu punctuation move he thinks is appropriate.

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