ESL Grammar Lessons

by Marinka on July 28, 2012

I’ve been reading with my kids a lot this summer. Reading the same books they are, that is. My daughter and I are still in the middle of the Ebola epidemic (by the way, several women in my book group pronounce it Eh-bola, which I think makes it sound like they don’t think Ebola is a big deal, and let me reassure you it most certainly is; but can someone confirm that it’s pronounced EEEbola which admittedly sounds like you are scared of it) but Young Ladrinka and I took a lighter tone and decided to stick with The Series of Unfortunate Events. I love these books and am furious at everyone who didn’t insist that I read the series earlier. Which, I believe, includes all of you, so nice going.

And now I’m on the third Unfortunate Events book which I love because the orphans are living with Aunt Josephine and Aunt Josephine loves grammar. And as any person who loves grammar, she heartily disapproves of people confusing its/it’s. She is a character after my own heart and I am thisclose to starting to write Aunt Josephine fan fiction. 50 Shades of Aunt Josephine perhaps.

At one point Aunt Josephine, after being handed a card that says “Captain Sham’s Sailboats. Every boat has it’s own sail” says,

“This card says ‘it’s’ with an apostrophe. I-T-apostraphe-S aways means ‘it is.’ You don’t mean to say “Every boat has it is own sail.’ You mean simply I-T-S, ‘belonging to it.’ It’s a very common mistake, Captain Sham, but a dreadful one.”

I don’t want to give too much away, but this is an important point in the book, and incidentally, in life. So this morning I decided to check in with Young Ladrinka to make sure that he understood.

Here is a transcript of our conversation. For those of you who are more visual, please imagine Sofia Vergara in my role and Alfalfa in Young Ladrinka’s. But obviously a glommed up version of Sofia Vergara.

Marinka Vergara: Did you understand the whole I-T-S and I-T-apostrophe-S thing?

Young Ladrinka: Yes.

Marinka: So if you were to say “A mother loves blank children” how would you fill in the blank?

Young Ladrinka: Her?

Marinka: Oh, you’re a smart guy, huh? Ok, I meant a mother dog, obviously.

Young Ladrinka: Still her.

Marinka: A stuffed mother dog. And spell out the word, please.

Young Ladrinka: I-T-S-apostraphe.


This post contains Amazon affiliate links. And despair.

One year ago ...

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the RSS feed.

{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

KG July 28, 2012 at 1:01 pm

So, the homeschooling is going well?


Awesome Dude July 28, 2012 at 6:04 pm

Try ox oxen.

Box boxen.


Lady Jennie July 28, 2012 at 6:07 pm

Very very funny last three lines.


Alexandra July 28, 2012 at 9:04 pm

apple …. tree ….

You know where I’m going with that.

(see you soon, and so looking forward to your kind face.)



July 29, 2012 at 8:31 am

I always suspected he was the wiser child.


Liz @ PeaceLoveGuac
July 29, 2012 at 10:00 am

Sounds like he might be coming down with a little of the eh-bola virus too.


Jenny from the blog July 29, 2012 at 10:05 am

I always imagine you as Sofia vergara. Hello, we’ve met so, duh. Its’ what I do.


Mom of A and a July 29, 2012 at 12:53 pm

I’m pretty sure it’s Eeebola, and I’m pretty sure I told you about the Unfortunate Events book in the comments of post # 624!!


Louise July 29, 2012 at 11:34 pm



Tinne from Tantrums and Tomatoes July 30, 2012 at 7:05 am

But I’m native Dutch speaking so what do I know.


Tracy in Suburbia July 30, 2012 at 8:46 am

You spelled “apostrophe” wrong. Just sayin’…


July 30, 2012 at 11:13 am

We LOVED those books so much! (and the movie is pretty awesome too)


Mexmom July 31, 2012 at 10:01 am

Not to be bearer of bad news or anything but did you read this article about Eeebola?,0,3514777.story


Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: