The truth is, the written form of English is a code – but an open, public code, not a closed secret code. The Egyptians devised a code of writing – hieroglyphics – thousands of years ago, and it is pretty much Greek – I mean, Egyptian – to us. It is a closed code. At least English isn’t that unfathomable!
What is a code? A code is simply a set of symbols that represent things. For instance, computers function because of a binary code, which simply put is a coding system using the binary digits 0 and 1 to represent a letter, digit, or other character.
Further, when you combine words into sentences, there has to be a doing word – a verb – to make sense of what is being said or written. (An agreed aspect of the code is that without a verb, a collection of words only form a phrase that can be included in a sentence to make proper sense.)
Communicating information often takes more than one sentence – which means you can write a whole paragraph of sentences on a particular aspect of a subject. The trick is to stick to one aspect per paragraph, and not mix them up. The best way to do that is to use the first sentence to name that aspect and then explain and give details of it in the rest of the sentences.
So the “secret” of this code is simply: SPSP which stands for Spelling/Punctuation/Sentences /Paragraphs.
Of course, this code has become pretty sophisticated over time, especially when it comes to details of grammar in sentences. And confusion and miscommunication happens when people are either unaware or choose to ignore the accepted tenets of the code. That’s when it really helps to have a great go-to resource such as The Proofreader’s Guide in the resource Writers INC : A Student Handbook for Writing and Learning. (This particular resource is included in our Love2Learn English curriculum for its outstanding investment value in your child’s education.)
But ultimately clear communication all boils down to the SPSP Code. Tick those boxes and you will find that making English understandable for others is no longer a mysterious process in any way!