I'm writing because I might have to teach elementary students. I actually have taught Japanese as a foreigen language in the United States for several months to elementary students born there. I'm writing these quetions based on the experience there. I used some of the games and songs. But I also tried to talk about some about the forms. Then I had some questions about teaching a foreign language to elementary kids.
I can somehow deal with aspects that are easier to understand to Japanese L1 learners, such as adjectives, adverbs, knowing differences in word order, parts of speech, either in games/songs or grammar explanation.
But I just wonder how I can let them understand English-specific forms.
For example, if we try to put grammar rules into use, we can just say "When we ask anybody to do something, we say "Can you ...?" "And we have to put CAN at the beginning of the sentence, before YOU, and the verb comes after that." But if a student would ask me "Why?" I can only say "Because this is what it is." As a teacher, saying "Because this is what it is." might not be a right comment, because that does not sound like a teaching. I could use some grammar terms such as explaining what are helping verbs, but I'm not even sure if they listen to the explanation or if that help them acquire the language and use it. I had problems with talking about forms especially because they are elementary kids, whose attentions tend to go different places. I even thought talking about form never work for these kids, but I still need to ask for your opinions. I still understand teathing a language often ends up saying "That's what it is." though, I need to know more ideas.
Would anybody help me out?