8 English grammar books that will help school kids

8 English grammar books that will help school kids Cover Image

Our list of grammar books will help high school students understand the nuts and bolts of the language in a fun and exploratory manner. Do have a look!

Nothing can substitute reading but our list of English grammar books will help high school students understand the nuts and bolts of the language in a fun and exploratory manner. Do have a look!

Joan Didion once said, “Grammar is a piano I play by ear.” It isn’t so much about the rules as it is about understanding the rhythm of a language and learning it through reading before approaching grammar.

So much has been said about English grammar and the right way to use it but nothing can substitute unbridled reading. During the early school years, reading is an immersive and crucial way to internalize grammar. For higher grades, grammar concepts should be introduced through books that have solid credentials and have many examples to guide the student, examples that are rooted in good literature and a keen sense of syntax and style.

Here are 8 excellent English grammar books that can be introduced to school students


1. Wren and Martin

The granddaddy of grammar books, every competent Indian speaker of English swears by Wren and Martin and how these grammar books gave them a solid foundation and shaped their love for the language. This book can be used for middle and high school children. Wren and Martin even have practice books and the revision by NDV Prasada Rao is filled with Indian examples that make the language more varied and relevant.

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2. Essential Grammar in Use/English Grammar in Use by Raymond Murphy

A good foundation in grammar essentially translates to better writing skills and more effective communication. Raymond Murphy helps high school students put their grammar lessons to practical use when it comes to their writing abilities. This book is useful for high school students.

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3. English Vocabulary in Use by Cambridge University Press 

More of a reference and practice book for users who already have knowledge of the language and its nuances, English Vocabulary in Use (Elementary) is perfect for self-study and reference. Apart from exercises for vocabulary development, it also has practice exercises that show a student how to use words in proper contexts. It is useful for high school students and those who are attempting competitive exams in English like IELTS.

You can click here to get a free PDF of the edition by Michael McCarthy and Felicity O’Dell.

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4. A Practical English Grammar by Thomson and Martinet

Highly recommended for non-native speakers of the English language who want to get to using it as well as native speakers do, this book has tons of exercise and covers all the concepts. The book has been revised with better examples and more extensive exercises to use the English language more creatively and flexibly. Useful for self-study by students in the higher grades, children from lower grades can also use this book with assistance.

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5. Scholastic Grammar Workbook Series

Filled with colorful exercises on nouns, prepositions and trickier sentence construction rules, these books are excellent for children to expand their range when it comes to writing sentences and ensuring that they are grammatically correct. Scholastic publishes these books for every grade.

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6. Fowler’s Modern English Usage 

The remarkable thing about Fowler’s classic book on English usage is just how well it introduces students to the beauty of the English language. There are practical tips on grammar and syntax but there is also a lot of information on British and American English usage differences and so much more. It also introduces grammar and words through a wealth of excellent writing by masters such as Harold Pinter, Iris Murdoch, Agatha Christie, and Noel Coward. An absolute must-have for every student of the English language. Fowler’s book is used by many high school students but if a younger child displays a felicity for the language, then this is perfect for them too!

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7. The Only Grammar Book You’ll Ever Need 

An excellent practical guide for students who want to understand the nuts and bolts of the English language and use it effectively when it comes to writing and communication. From common mistakes and proper punctuation rules to tips on writing clear and powerful sentences, this book is especially good to get children to write in a more lucid manner. This book is more useful for high school students.

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8. The Elements of Style by Strunk and White

Did you know that it is incorrect to say “I am nauseous,” unless you believe you have that effect on people? (The correct word to use in this context is ‘nauseated’, in case you are curious.) So much about grammar is about what is implied or unsaid, a scaffolding that holds the writing together. Strunk and White’s golden rules for sentence composition shine light upon these connections. Simple, clear, practical and concise, this book has been recommended as invaluable by every writer of English worth his or her salt. This book is useful for high school and college students. It is of immense value to adults as well!

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With the Internet blurring the lines between what is accepted and what is misrepresented or wrong, grammar will play an important role in keeping sense intact. It is not about hard and fast rules as much as it is about meaningful communication.

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