Michael Clay Thompson has long argued that grammar is simple and beautiful. Once again he has proven it so with his book The Grammar of Literature.
This is the grammar component of the newest level of the MCT language arts curriculum. What is extraordinary about the book is not only its capacity to help students figure out complicated sentences like this one but also MCT’s introduction of a new “t-model” for picturing sentences.
This t-model exquisitely showcases one of the crucial parts of MCT’s genius: his ability to render complex grammar relationships as simple but beautiful illustrations. The t-model shows clearly the importance of subjects and verbs in relation to adjectives, adverbs, and other parts of the sentence; it visually emphasizes the dichotomy between subject and predicate; it visually clarifies the distinction between action verbs and linking verbs; it provides a simple, clear, and elegant visualization of phrases, particularly of verbal phrases. Its simplification of verbals will help many children master what continues to prove daunting to many parents and teachers.
The books in this level of the MCT curriculum focus on the vocabulary, grammar, writing, and poetic techniques of the authors of the great classics of English and American literature.