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Sentence diagramming: In everyone’s dreams, some nightmares and others fantasies

A screenshot from SenGram diagramming app.

A screenshot from SenGram diagramming app.

A screenshot from SenGram diagramming app.

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Sentence diagramming is a way to organize your sentence as a picture. It graphs words of the sentence to demonstrate types of words and parts of speech and functions. It can be used to create better and fuller sentences. The best benefit of sentence diagramming, however, is the grade boost on most English assignments.

English/math teacher and advisor of the creative writing club, Mr. Dan Lake said, “[Sentence diagramming] is useful in just about any academic or professional activity.” It helps the writer pay more attention to writing and allows for a more in-depth analysis of others’ writing.

Diagramming began as a way to teach students grammar. In 1877 two professors from Brooklyn Polytechnic Institute came up with a way to visualize the sentence. It was created to aid the more visual learners to understand sentence structure and word type.

About 1970, however, sentence diagramming lost its thunder. It was thought of being too complicated for teaching such a simple skill. Most schools then dropped the skill for other grammar alternatives. They figured that students would learn the skills taught through sentence diagramming by simply reading and writing more.

This is where SenGram comes in. This app allows users to practice diagramming all different types of sentences. It gives the user a sentence, and the empty diagram, and then has the user place the words where they belong. It also is somewhat of a puzzle game, which makes it feel less like English homework and more like a game.

The current version has over 100 puzzles, so you will never run short on sentences to diagram. At $5.99 you get a multitude of puzzle solving fun, while getting better at English. It plays just like a game, not like homework. It is also easily accessible, as an app on the iPhone.

With a three and a half stars rating, the game has been praised for its simple setup and range of problems. When using it, the game is structured very well and is very easy on the eyes with a green color palette. It also helps players learn what sentence diagramming is and get the hang of the controls.

The puzzle begins with an empty diagram and a prompt sentence. Users then have to place the words in the proper place on the diagram by clicking them in the order they go on the diagram. If you match the word in its correct space, it will go into the diagram. It’s that simple. As you get better, the puzzles get harder, so you will always be learning new skills.

Sentence diagramming should be required as a part of English class. It teaches the relationship between words and word types. It also would not take time away from other educational activities, as is could be done as homework or a warm up. The best part its that it’s a game. You can play it on your phone on the ride to school or when you are sitting at home watching TV.

Now that there is a easy and affordable way to practice sentence diagramming, there is no reason it should not be taught in English class. It is a fun way to learn some essential skills and should really be used more often.

Some students struggle with grammar, and this app help tremendously.

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Sentence diagramming: In everyone’s dreams, some nightmares and others fantasies