Half-Term Break with SPaG

Having decided to move to a weekly posting, I have also decided to give any larger posting a miss for this weekend as teachers will be enjoying the start of their well-deserved half-term breaks. Seems stupid to attempt to intrude on this!

Instead, here is some light relief with a tinge of attitude. I was recently asked if I would be interested in developing multiple choice questions for SPaG practice as a potential online learning tool. A genuine request for a genuine project and something that will happen, but it wasn’t for me.

The last time I was ever involved with MCQs would be between 1980-83, I think, with a then CSE English examination, and I have questioned their value ever since. One very personal experience validates that view over and above my more general and considered objection: in order to attain my Teaching Certificate I had to pass an ‘O-Level Maths Equivalent’ test. Now in any genuine sense I can assure you this would have been an impossibility. However, the exam questions were multiple choice, and I guess I guessed well, but I do also remember clearly one of the questions was based on a quadratic equation and of the four possible answers only one contained the x and y that was in the maths question being asked!

The idea then of devising MSQs for SPaG, where the weighting in the new GCSE English Language Orders for this latter is going to be punitive, was bound for many reasons to be anathema to my particular interest in supporting students as writers. Thus the following:


a. is this the way, you will ask? the question [or]
b. is this, the way, you will, ask the, question? [or]
c. Is this the way you will ask the question?

is this the way you will ask the question
this is the question the way you will ask
ask is this the way you question the will
is the way you will ask the question you
question is this the way you will the ask
will you ask is the question the you way
the question you ask is the way you will
is this the question the way you will ask

d. the question
you will ask
is this the way?

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