Blog Grammar Rules Grammar Skills: 10 Tips to Improve

Grammar Skills: 10 Tips to Improve

Hannah Yang

Hannah Yang

Speculative Fiction Author

Published May 07, 2022
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Grammar skills title

Grammar is the set of guidelines that a language is built on. Proper grammar helps you communicate your thoughts clearly and effectively.

Grammar skills aren’t always easy to learn, but luckily you can improve your skills with practice.

This article will give you ten tips for how to get better at grammar and improve your writing skills.

Contents:
  1. How to Improve Your English Grammar Skills
  2. Summary: Grammar Skills Top 10 Tips

How to Improve Your English Grammar Skills

Here are our top ten tips for improving your English grammar skills.

Tip #1: Read, Read, Read

This tip might seem obvious, but it’s the most important one. Read written English. You can read novels, textbooks, or newspapers—anything that makes you excited to keep reading and learning.

Whether or not English is your native language, your brain will learn it better through repeated exposure. The more you read, the more you’ll naturally understand how proper grammar works.

Even if you don’t know all the rules yet, reading will help you build an intuition for the written language.

Tip for building grammar skills

Tip #2: Consult a Grammar Manual

A grammar manual can help you understand why English grammar works the way it does.

Knowing the rules isn’t a replacement for having a natural intuition for grammar—you need to build both simultaneously—but it can certainly help you avoid written mistakes.

If you don’t have a grammar manual yet, you can try the Grammar in Use series by Raymond Murphy or Garner’s Modern English Usage by Bryan A. Garner.

You can also use a common style guide like the Chicago Manual of Style or the Associated Press Style.

Tip #3: Use a Grammar Checker

A grammar checker can help you make your writing sound fluent and professional, even if you’re still learning the rules. ProWritingAid can help you improve your grammar skills with every new piece you write.

Look at the issues ProWritingAid catches in your work to see if you repeatedly make the same grammar mistakes. Read the explanations for what you’re doing wrong and see the different ways you can correct the mistake.

For example, if you’re conjugating your verbs incorrectly, ProWritingAid will highlight every instance of that mistake and help you fix it.

ProWritingAid correcting an incorrectly conjugated verb

Tip #4: Learn the Parts of Speech

There are nine types of words in the English language: nouns, pronouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, prepositions, conjunctions, interjections, and articles.

Study these nine parts of speech and how they link. You’ll need to know which role each word plays in order to use it correctly in a sentence.

The 9 parts of speech

Tip #5: Learn the Rules of Sentence Structure

Sentence structure encompasses many topics, from the difference between independent and dependent clauses, to the necessary elements that comprise a complete sentence.

Learning these rules will help you create more complex sentences in your writing.

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Tip #6: Study Punctuation Rules

Many grammar mistakes involve improper punctuation.

Correct punctuation shows you how written thoughts stop, pause, or connect to one another.

You will need to know how to use punctuation marks like commas, periods, semicolons, colons, apostrophes, dashes, and more.

The 10 punctuation marks

Correctly punctuating your sentences will make your work easier to read.

Tip #7: Play Grammar Games

Most people learn better by playing games than by studying.

You can find plenty of grammar games online which put your skills to the test in a fun and exciting way. You can try the Quiz Your English app, which allows you to compete against your friends.

If you’re at a more advanced level, you can try Proof It, a game where you look for grammar and punctuation mistakes in English sentences.

If you’re learning English as a second language, you can try FluentU, which takes real videos and turns them into games.

Tip #8: Practice Writing with Correct Grammar

The more you practice writing, the faster your grammar skills will improve.

Try keeping a daily journal in English. You can try writing short stories too, if that’s something you’re interested in.

Better yet, you can find a penpal to send letters or emails to. That way, you’ll be able to get direct feedback on your work.

Ask them to let you know if you make the same grammar errors over and over, so you can keep an eye out for it in the future.

Tip #9: Read Your Work Out Loud

Reading your work out loud is useful for proofreading. When you’ve finished a first draft, try reading your work out loud.

When you read it on the page, everything might look correct, because your brain will correct misspellings and fill in the gaps. But when you read work out loud, you’ll be able to tell if something sounds wrong.

Tip #10: Invest in a Class

If you want to make sure your grammar is improving, it may be worth investing in a class.

Your local community college might offer language courses that you can enroll in.

You can also ask the English students there if they’d be willing to tutor you one-on-one for an hourly fee. Having that level of personalized feedback can really take your grammar skills to the next level.

Summary: Grammar Skills Top 10 Tips

In summary, here are our top ten tips:

1) Read, read, read

2) Consult a grammar manual

3) Use a grammar checker

4) Learn the parts of speech

5) Learn the rules of sentence structure

6) Study punctuation rules

7) Play grammar games

8) Practice writing with correct grammar

9) Read your work out loud

10) Invest in a class

What are your favorite tips for how to get better at grammar? Let us know in the comments.


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Hannah Yang

Hannah Yang

Speculative Fiction Author

Hannah is a speculative fiction writer who loves all things strange and surreal. She holds a BA from Yale University and lives in Colorado. When she’s not busy writing, you can find her painting watercolors, playing her ukulele, or hiking in the Rockies. Follow her work on hannahyang.com or on Twitter at @hannahxyang.

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