Overuse of the exclamation mark: You’re having a laugh!!!! A little strict?!!

I’m sure you’ve heard today in the news – about the implemented changes to the use of the exclamation mark for primary school children. The newly introduced educational exclamation law means that for pupils across England, only phrases starting with “what” or “how” merit an exclamation mark.

I think that it’s always good to educate children on punctuation – it moulds our language and creates meaning. Without punctuation, people write extremely comical yet disturbing sentences.

“Let’s eat Mum!” & “Let’s eat, Mum!”

“I live for cooking my family and my dog” & “I live for cooking, my family, and my dog”

Unless you want to sound like a disturbing family orientated carnivore, knowing how to use punctuation is key!!! (Sorry!)

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I support punctuation education, but I don’t quite understand the specific focus on the exclamation mark. Of course, there needs to be limited use of exclamation marks and even question marks when it matters most – two examples being in education or professional  writing, such as copywriting. People alter their writing and even their speech in certain situations, and I believe that for children it is the same; they will accommodate their writing when at school compared to when writing on say, social media, text or messenger. But even if they don’t, then it is up to the teacher to educate them.

Anyway, I thought this was interesting and definitely has much more needed to be said on the matter.

My latest article ‘How has technology affected the relation between speech and writing?‘ I believe has a great cohesion with this subject, so have a read of that too!

Also, this news is all over the Internet, have a read about the new exclamation mark rules on the BBC and The Guardian.

BBC – http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p03lrtwd

The Guardian – http://www.theguardian.com/education/shortcuts/2016/mar/07/new-exclamation-mark-rules-proof-the-government-wants-to-penalise-enthusiasm

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/mar/07/children-use-exclamation-marks-department-education

Thanks for reading, feel free to comment and share this post!

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Memories

So my parents are sorting out the house, you know, the usual thing of getting rid of your unwanted and unloved stuff.
They came across my old English books at school. It’s now I realise how set up and cheesy school is. Glad to see that my spelling and Creative Writing has improved, significantly. But, at the age of 9/10 I don’t think that, for one of my writing tasks, I would write for the proposed question ‘How do I learn best?’ My instinct reply would be ‘when I drink lots of water’, ‘when my brain is swiched (that’s how it’s spelt) on’ and ‘when I do not cheet (spelling again).’

Another task was to write Similes, I decided to write similes about my brother. The highlight of this task was my creativity, which showed my stupidity at the same time. E.g. ‘My brother is as stupid as a computer.’ The teacher even questioned it, ‘are computers stupid?’. Still got my house point though!!

You’ve got to love looking at your work from school.

Have you got any funny stories of your school days?