My children and I spend a lot of time on various parts of Grammar. If I am spending a month or more on the different types of nouns, I don’t want to redo it again a year or so later! Thus, I came up with the Grammar Bank as a great way to practice recognizing grammar in their everyday readings without the use of flash cards or hours of studying.
When we started out, I was using the free banking deposit slips, I have since upgraded to my own form because they were finding more words than I anticipated. If you are just starting out I encourage you to still try the standard banking deposit slip as filling those out is a valuable lesson as well.
Step One: Find a vessel
Because I have three children working with Grammar, I needed a vessel large enough to handle all of their finds without it being too easy. I don’t want them filling the jar up in a week. The prize at the end will become routine, not special if they are filling it up too frequently.
We used one of my husband’s supplement powder containers. I removed the outter packaging plastic and decorated it with grammar vocabulary and punctuation marks.
Step Two: Decide on a counter
I started using pebbles we obtained from a rock museum, but again, they were filling up the jar too quickly. Then I thought “bank”… money! So, now we are using pennies and we have a whole new prize at the end.
Step 3: Deposit Slips
Again, I started using the free banking slips from our bank. If you are starting this process out with first graders, I would continue to use those slips as it teaches them how to fill one out. After your child has mastered the concept, you may need to graduate to a larger slip.
Step 4: Filling it up!
After each child completes their reading lesson for the day, my children receive a deposit slip. They are then instructed to search for the parts of grammar that we have already learned, within the chapter or pages they have read for that day. (This way, they don’t go crazy grabbing every book in the house in an effort to fill it up quickly- yes, they tried that)
Afterwards they turn their slip over to me (the banker) to be sure they are correct and there are no duplicates. Once the total deposits have been approved, they receive the pennies to put in the Grammar Bank.
Step 5: The Prize!
After the bank is full, my children will count all of their pennies, and use that amount of money to do a special activity outside of the home. (Examples: The movies, roller skating, arcade, lunch at their favorite pizza place)
Expand this activity:
Take a field trip to your local bank
Make a “Word Bank” for your little ones to practice their sight words before they are introduced to grammar.