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A presentation by Merle Oesterschulze & Ann-Kristin Tibo

Teaching Grammar

Teaching the Language System

How to Teach Grammar

This presentation is (mainly) based on


Tricia Hedges Teaching and Learning in the Language Classroom, (2000) Chapter 5 pp.158-178
Further material was taken out of
Scott Thornburys How Teach Grammar, (1999)
Rosie Tanners and Cathrine Greens Tasks for Teacher Education. A Reflective Approach, (1998) (Chap.3)
Overview

Teaching Grammar

Overview
Content of our Presentation
Introduction
Why teach grammar?
Grammar acquisition 1. Introduction
Basic principles 1.1 Why teach grammar?
Guiding principles in
1.2 Grammar acquisition a short revision
the teaching of 1.3 Basic principles for grammar teaching
grammar
Presenting grammar
Practising grammar 2. Guiding principles in the teaching of grammar
2.1 Presenting grammar
How can we suit
approach to learner 2.2 Practising grammar
needs?

3. How can we suit approach to learner needs?

4. Bibliography
Introduction
- Why teach grammar? -
Teaching Grammar

Overview

Introduction
Why teach grammar?
Grammar acquisition
Basic principles

Guiding principles in
the teaching of
grammar
Presenting grammar
Practising grammar
To what extent do you agree or disagree with these statements?

How can we suit


approach to learner
needs?

taken from Tasks for Teacher Education p. 13


Introduction
- Why teach grammar? -
Teaching Grammar Presentation of grammar can facilitate learning in a number of ways:

Overview
+ it can provide input for noticing language forms

Introduction + it can help to see the difference between the learners output and accurate
Why teach grammar? forms of English
Grammar acquisition
Basic principles + Without some focus on form, learners run the risk of fossilising
Guiding principles in
the teaching of + it can give information on the stylistic variation of language form
grammar Me Tarzan, you Jane- kind of language fails to deliver intelligibility
Presenting grammar
Practising grammar

How can we suit


approach to learner
BUT this does not mean that grammar should be the goal of teaching, nor that a
needs? focus on form alone is sufficient.

A language is acquired through practice [communication]; it is merely perfected


through grammar (Leibniz)

On balance, there is a convincing case for grammar teaching

(taken out of How Teach Grammar pp.15-17; 23-25)


Introduction
- Grammar acquisition -

Teaching Grammar

Overview
We have to be aware of the ...
Introduction
Why teach grammar? developmental sequences or natural order hypothesis
Grammar acquisition = readiness to learn
Basic principles
order in which certain features of language are acquired
Guiding principles in
the teaching of
grammar
variation of the time needed to learn a new structure among Ls
Presenting grammar implication: to recycle structures
Practising grammar

How can we suit


fact that the process is not a lockstep one
approach to learner e.g. go went *goed
needs?

inductive learning
- use of acquired knowledge and knowledge of L1 to discover the
language

Consequences for the role of grammar instruction


Introduction
- Basic principles -

Teaching Grammar Grammar presentation and practice activities should be evaluated


according to:
Overview
1. How efficient they are
Introduction
Why teach grammar?
Grammar acquisition
1.1 How time-efficient is it? (its economy)
Basic principles presenting grammar: the shorter the better
Guiding principles in 1.2 How easy is it set up? (its ease)
the teaching of
grammar
the easier an activity is to set up, the better it is
Presenting grammar
Practising grammar 1.3 Is it consistent with good learning principles? (its efficacy)
try to exclude any distracting or irrelevant details
How can we suit
approach to learner understandable and easy to remember
needs?
2. How appropriate they are
2.1 learners needs and interests
2.2 learners attitudes and expectations
factors: age; level; group size; constitution of the group

(taken out of How Teach Grammar pp.25-28)


Guiding principles
- Presenting grammar -

Teaching Grammar
contextualization
Overview

Introduction
Why teach grammar?
Grammar acquisition
Basic principles

Guiding principles in
linking grammar order
the teaching of and of presentation
grammar
Presenting grammar vocabulary
Practising grammar Presenting
How can we suit
Grammar
approach to learner
needs?

degree of use of
explicitness terminology
Guiding principles
- Presenting grammar -

Teaching Grammar
Language is context-
sensitive (Thornbury; p.90)
Overview

Introduction
Context can be created
Why teach grammar? through:
Grammar acquisition visuals; miming/
Basic principles
demonstrating; dialogues;
Guiding principles in texts; songs; videos;
the teaching of
grammar situations
Presenting grammar
Practising grammar
The context should be
How can we suit useful and appropriate to
approach to learner
needs?
the learners needs

Which forms and in what order?

Experiment
Guiding principles
- Presenting grammar -

Teaching Grammar Experiment

Overview Consider the set of forms for the present continuous tense to
express current actions:
Introduction
Why teach grammar?
Grammar acquisition
Basic principles

Guiding principles in
the teaching of
grammar
Presenting grammar
Practising grammar

How can we suit


approach to learner
needs?
Guiding Principles
- Presenting Grammar -

Teaching Grammar - metalanguage may be useful for advanced learners and


analytical learners
Overview
- Sometimes, it is most effective to guide students into
seeing the patterns (above all for beginners)
Introduction
Why teach grammar?
Grammar acquisition
Basic principles
Explicit = deductive approach
Guiding principles in
the teaching of grammatical explanation and application activity
grammar Implicit = inductive approach
Presenting grammar
Practising grammar discovery learning e.g. consciousness-raising
tasks
How can we suit
approach to learner Compare Material 5A and 5B
needs?

Pattern: it + linking verb + adjective + infinitive with


to
e.g.: Its difficult to make up your mind.
Its easy to say that.
Lexical phrases used by native speakers
Guiding Principles
- Practising Grammar -

Teaching grammar

The PPP model


Overview

Introduction PRESENTATION
Why teach grammar?
Grammar acquisition
Basic principles

Guiding Principles in
the Teaching of
Grammar
Presenting Grammar PRACTICE
Practising Grammar

How can we suit aim: to achieve


approach to learner
needs? accuracy

PRODUCTION

aim: to achieve
fluency
See table 5.1; p. 166
Guiding Principles
- Practising Grammar -

Teaching Grammar The PPP model

Overview
Pros Cons
Introduction
Why teach grammar? has a logic appeal both to teachers Learners will perform the activity
Grammar acquisition and students and reflects the way with the new learned structure
Basic principles other skills are learned, e.g. football correctly in that lesson, but will then
Guiding principles in cease to use it, or produce it
the teaching of inaccurately (see also: Ellis; p.166)
grammar
Presenting grammar allows the teacher to control the Language is learned in bits and
Practising grammar content and pace of the lesson and steps
How can we suit
provides a convenient template
BUT: Language acquisition is more
approach to learner
needs? complex and less linear than the
PPP model assumes
Controlled practice stage provides assumes that accuracy precedes
conscious focus on form fluency

BUT: learners might be able to


speak fluently while still making
mistakes
Guiding Principles
- Practising Grammar -

Teaching Grammar
Alternative Models:
Overview
1) Dictogloss Technique
Introduction
Why teach grammar?
Grammar acquisition Form of dictation, BUT: students need to hear and reconstruct the whole
Basic principles
text
Guiding Principles in
the Teaching of Focus is on language form which is contextually embedded in a situation
Grammar
Presenting Grammar
Practising Grammar Learners are encouraged to reflect on grammar
How can we suit Students need to work collaboratively on reflecting the text which
approach to learner
needs?
necessitates decision-making
negotiation of form (Swain)

Sample Lesson
Guiding Principles
- Practising Grammar -

Teaching Grammar Sample Lesson


Overview
aim: Learn would in its past habitual sense
Introduction
Why teach grammar? example: When we lived in Canada we would often
Grammar acquisition
Basic principles go kayaking.
Guiding Principles in
the Teaching of
Grammar
Instructions
Presenting Grammar
Practising Grammar 1. Listen and as soon as I have finished write
How can we suit
down what you remember of the text.
approach to learner
needs? 2. Join up in pairs and compare what you have
noted down.
3. Try to reconstruct the text.
4. Compare your version with the original.
Guiding Principles
- Practising Grammar -

Teaching Grammar

Overview

Introduction When I was a child we used to go camping every summer. Wed choose a
Why teach grammar?
Grammar acquisition
Basic principles
different place each year, and wed drive around until we found a beach we

Guiding Principles in liked. Then wed pitch our tent, as near as possible to the beach. Wed
the Teaching of
Grammar
Presenting Grammar usually spend most of the time on the beach or exploring the country round
Practising Grammar
about. We never went to the same beach twice.
How can we suit
approach to learner
needs?

Taken out of How Teach Grammar p.83


Guiding Principles
- Practising Grammar -

Teaching Grammar
To sum it up
Overview
Order of the dictogloss activities
Introduction
Why teach grammar?
Grammar acquisition
1. warm-up to the topic and preparation of relevant
Basic principles vocabulary
Guiding Principles in
the Teaching of 2. text is read twice, on the second reading students note
Grammar
Presenting Grammar
down the words they catch
Practising Grammar
3. students try to reconstruct the text in groups they
How can we suit
approach to learner use the grammar they know and consider the possible
needs?
alternatives

4. when comparing their version of the text with the


original, students see the difference
Guiding Principles
- Practising Grammar -

Teaching Grammar

Alternative Models:
Overview

Introduction
Why teach grammar?
2) Task-Based Model
Grammar acquisition
Basic principles

Guiding principles in TASK TEACH TASK


the teaching of
grammar
Presenting grammar
Practising grammar focus on: fluency-to-accuracy sequence
How can we suit
approach to learner
needs?
1. Learners perform a communicative task
2. Teacher uses this to identify language features learners could have
used to communicate more effectively
3. These features are taught and practised
4. Students re-perform the original (or a similar) task
How can we suit approach to
learner needs?

Teaching Grammar

Overview

Introduction
Why teach grammar?
Grammar acquisition
Basic principles

Guiding principles in
the teaching of
grammar
Presenting grammar
Practising grammar

How can we suit


approach to learner
needs?

Celce-Murcia: the more factors the teacher identifies on the left side
of the grid, the less important it is to focus on form; the more factors
the teacher identifies on the right, the more important the
grammatical focus (Celce-Murcia 1993: 294)
Bibliography

Teaching Grammar

Green, Catherine & Tanner, Rosie (1998). Tasks for Teacher Education. A
Reflective Approach. Longman

Hedge, Tricia (2000). Teaching and Learning in the Language Classroom.


Oxford University Press

Thornbury, Scott (1999). How Teach Grammar. Longman

http://www.songtext.net/A/Adams_Bryan/Summer_Of_69.html