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Happy National Grammar Day!

It’s not exactly a national holiday with a day off work, but March 4  marks National Grammar Day. I got the word from Mr. Rewrite, a defender of good grammar, punctuation, and usage.  Get the details at the celebratory host site, National Grammar Day

No doubt the site suggests ways to celebrate. Here are a few I suggest:

  • Create a list of your grammar pet peeves and invite others to add to it.
  • Practice starting sentences with "She and I" and "He and I." Speak these sentences aloud to others.
  • Review the list of grammar sites at National Grammar Day and forward the list to people who would benefit from it.
  • Click through a few of my posts on grammar and usage (in the Grammar and Usage category at right). See if you can find something you didn’t know or didn’t remember. If you already know most of what I wrote, smile smugly.
  • Use the word grammar in several emails you send out, and spell the word correctly.
  • Add to this list by commenting below.

Happy Grammar Day!

Syntax Training

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By Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston has helped thousands of employees and managers improve their business writing skills and confidence through her company, Syntax Training. In her corporate training career of more than 20 years, she has worked with executives, engineers, scientists, sales staff, and many other professionals, helping them get their messages across with clarity and tact.

A gifted teacher, Lynn has led writing classes at more than 100 companies and organizations such as MasterCard, Microsoft, Boeing, Nintendo, REI, AARP, Ledcor, and Kaiser Permanente. Near her home in Seattle, Washington, she has taught managerial communications in the MBA programs of the University of Washington and UW Bothell. She has created a communications course, Business Writing That Builds Relationships, and provides the curriculum at no cost to college instructors.

A recognized expert in business writing etiquette, Lynn has been quoted in "The Wall Street Journal," "The Atlantic," "Vanity Fair," and other media.

Lynn sharpened her business writing skills at the University of Notre Dame, where she earned a master's degree in communication, and at Bradley University, with a bachelor's degree in English.

6 comments on “Happy National Grammar Day!”

  • I’ll add to the list:

    Mark the date on a calendar so you don’t miss it next year!

    I can’t believe I missed it. It would have given me the perfect opportunity to blog about my #1 peeve, the misuse of its vs. it’s.

  • Hi Lynn,
    This is my current #1 grammar peeve. More and more I am hearing people say “different than” as opposed to “different from.” Has the grammar changed for a comperative? Or should they be saying “differenter than”?

  • Therese, the grammar has not changed. But interestingly I have not been reading or hearing the mistake you mention, and I used to see it a lot.

    “The Chicago Manual of Style” describes “different from” as “generally preferable” to “different than.” But it admits that “differently than” is almost required, as in “she described the scene differently than he did.”

    I recommend using the correct phrase and hoping people will copy you!


  • The grammar error that most grates on me is using a plural pronoun in reference to a singular noun. For example, “If your friend can’t get here by noon, tell them to come when they can.”

  • Hi, Bob. That one used to bother me a lot too. I have softened a bit because the correct “his or her” is awkward at times–especially when it must be repeated. And writers can’t always take the time to restructure the sentence to make it plural.

    You are correct, of course. Thanks for commenting.


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