Help!How do you teach grammar.

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Help!How do you teach grammar.

Unread postby cwcaro » 12 Nov 2013, 15:40

Hi everyone,

I am doing a final project for my master’s degree of TESOL right now. In the project, I need English teachers’ perspectives and opinions about grammar teaching. I really need your guys’ help.

In my opinion, grammar is important but it is hard to keep grammar teaching interesting. My own experience of learning English was not very fun. I remember my English teachers usually explained the grammar rules for us, and then had us do the grammar exercises. Therefore, in my project, I am eager to explore efficient and interesting ways of teaching grammar. In addition, I will be an English teacher soon after I graduate this year. I hope I could provide my students with interesting experiences of learning English but I don’t have much experience. I really need your opinion and suggestion.

Also, in my project, I have tried out the inductive approach. This was actually new to me. I gave students many examples of the target grammar feature of conditional, and guided them to find out the grammar rules without explicit explanation for them. Students’ responses for this approach were mixed. While some of them felt it was interesting, some of them preferred more explicit explanation of grammar rules. Could you also give me some advice about this approach?

I really appreciate it if you could give me your opinion about grammar teaching, and share with me some techniques and activities.

Thank you : )
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Re: Help!How do you teach grammar.

Unread postby Lucy » 12 Nov 2013, 18:12

It's always good to use the inductive approach as it engages students intellectually. For students who like a traditional explanation of rules, you can always follow it up with a presentation or explanation. You can also give students something to read that explains the rule.

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Re: Help!How do you teach grammar.

Unread postby cwcaro » 12 Nov 2013, 23:40

Hi Lucy,
Yes, I think it is a great idea to give students following up explanation of the rules. Thank you for your advice.
I also feel inductive approach can engage students actively. : )
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Re: Help!How do you teach grammar.

Unread postby doomer » 01 Feb 2014, 21:29

Personally, I teach grammar explicitly & deductively. It saves time & allows more time for controlled/freer communicative practice. I also sometimes use students' L1.

Grammar has a poor reputation because of the way it has been organized by native speaker academics & publishers, and then directly exported in tiny, piecemeal chunks to non-native students. To students, this steady stream will appear as a random mess of unrelated rules. That is why if you teach grammar in small chunks, many can use it in isolation for that class period, but can't reorganize that spontaneously into communicative competency.

For example, the 4 conditionals. I always teach the 0 & 1 together. Then much later on, after they've mastered modals, past participles & perfects, all 4 together.

Grammar underpins every language & every sentence. It's not boring if you can teach it holistically & help students use it increase their productive competency (speaking/writing)... and one can then teach grammar less.
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