John McIntyre, whom James Wolcott calls "the Dave Brubeck of the art and craft of copy editing," writes on language, editing, journalism, and other manifestations of human frailty. Comments welcome. Identifying his errors relieves him of the burden of omniscience. Write to jemcintyre@gmail.com, befriend at Facebook, or follow at Twitter: @johnemcintyre. Back 2009-2012 at the original site, http://weblogs.baltimoresun.com/news/mcintyre/blog/ and now at www.baltimoresun.com/news/language-blog/.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Teach your children well

Mem Fox, teacher and writer of children’s books, says this about her twin vocations in Radical Reflections:

Those who write well have more power and therefore have more control over their lives. ... [T]he granting of this power to our children is politically and socially essential. In the end they must be able to spell and punctuate; they’re powerless without these skills. Their power won’t come about without practice, and the practice can’t come about without purpose.