Last week, I taught my grammar class the five things that make a sentence complete. We went over the necessity for a capital letter at the beginning and some kind of punctuation at the end, that a complete sentence needed both a subject and a verb, and that it must express at least one complete thought.
I taught them this using Vulcan Fingers. Four of the five things fall conveniently into natural pairs, really – the capital at the beginning and the punctuation at the end, and the subject/verb relationship very neatly go together. The thumb, out all on its own, is the complete thought.
Yesterday, when I reviewed last week’s class, I asked my students to tell me the five things that make a sentence complete. One student – God love him – made Vulcan Fingers and was able to list every requirement. Watching him, I realized that kid’s going to remember that trick – probably for the rest of his life – and maybe even teach it to his own kids someday.
Teaching really is touching the future.