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1 Tools for Teaching English Grammar to Spanish-Speaking Students Who Know Almost Nothing About It.

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Presentation on theme: "1 Tools for Teaching English Grammar to Spanish-Speaking Students Who Know Almost Nothing About It."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 Tools for Teaching English Grammar to Spanish-Speaking Students Who Know Almost Nothing About It

2 2 What We’ll Discuss… Gramática del inglés: Paso a paso At last: a grammar book written in Spanish that assumes no prior knowledge of English or Spanish grammar Winning strategies for teaching grammar to Spanish-speakers who know very little about grammar in English or Spanish

3 3 Introducing: Gramática del inglés: Paso a Paso Written in readers’ native language: Spanish (with English addition available) Explicitly teaches punctuation and parts of speech in addition to teaching grammar Assumes no prior knowledge of Spanish or English grammar or punctuation

4 4 Topics Covered Identifying nouns, pronouns, and adjectives Using capital letters, periods, and question marks Distinguishing between singular and plural nouns Using a, an, and the Conjugating the verbs to be and to have Possessive adjectives, his, her, etc. Contractions

5 5 Pace Presents concepts in small, manageable steps For example –Section 1: my –Section 2: his, her –Section 3: your, our –Section 4: its, their

6 6 Format Employs consistent, easy to use layout Each page of explanation is followed by a page of practice exercises

7 7 Focus on Error Correction Calls out differences between Spanish and English grammar Includes exercises in which students choose between the correct and incorrect grammatical structure: I no tired. I’m not tired She hairHer hair

8 8 Practice Makes (almost) Perfect About a thousand exercises Answers to all exercises included All vocabulary is defined before it is used Bilingual dictionary includes all words used in exercises

9 9 How to Use This Book: As a class text As an optional text that students purchase themselves for use at home In one-on-one tutoring programs In Study at Home programs As a resource for teachers with Spanish-speaking students

10 10 And please… Purchase, don’t copy, these books! It’s cheaper for you. It’s better for your students.

11 11 Almost hot off the press… Gramática del inglés: Paso a paso 2 will be available early next year, if not sooner. It covers –Simple present –Do and does -- Present Progressive -- and LOTS more

12 12 Goals for today Make teaching grammar more fun and effective Make learning grammar more fun and productive

13 13 Grammar Conundrum #1 The Audio-lingual Method produced students who knew a lot about specific language structures but couldn’t apply what they knew to spontaneous conversation. The Communicative Approach produces students who communicate well but lack grammatical competency.

14 14 Grammar Conundrum #2 Explicit knowledge: conscious knowledge of grammar rules learned through formal classroom instruction Implicit knowledge: unconscious, internalized knowledge of a language that is available for spontaneous speech

15 15 Resolving the Grammar Conundrum: Goals Enable students to develop grammatical competency even in spontaneous speech. Make correct grammar automatic. Avoid the inert knowledge problem, inability to activate knowledge or transfer knowledge when you need it.

16 16 CASE STUDY Short Answer, present tense, with to be Students answer these questions: –Are you tired? –Are your parents in the United States?

17 17 CASE STUDY Short Answer, present tense, with to be Prior knowledge required to answer these questions: –Statements vs. questions – Conjugating the verb to be –Parts of speech (you vs. your) –Singular vs. plural – Contractions (or not)

18 18 How do you do it?* Explain Experience Explore

19 19 EXPLAIN grammar forms Be brief Be organized Be repetitive Be authentic

20 20 For every grammar form… Focus on error detection –1. I’m not tired. I no tired. –2. It is empty. Is empty. –3. I have an old car. I have car old. –4. The cars are new The cars is new. Can you identify the root of each grammar error?

21 21 For every grammar form… Test for understanding often! –Assignment: Write a sentence that includes the word “cleans.” She is a cleans the house. Maria’s cleans her house. He clean his house. She has cleans her house. Maria is clean her house. Louisa is a housecleaner. She cleans the her house.

22 22 Teach parts of speech from Day 1 Teach them in this order: nouns (person, place, animal, thing) subject pronouns (replace nouns) adjectives verbs (start with to be) prepositions adverbs

23 23 Teach parts of speech from Day 1 Use a variety of techniques Contests Four corners Fill the form Identification exercises Analylze texts Practice parts of speech often!

24 24 EXPERICNE grammar using these strategies: Make grammar a stand-up activity. Make grammar a cooperative activity. Make grammar a kinesthetic activity. Make grammar a joyous activity!

25 25 Make grammar a stand-up activity 1.Four Corners 2.Gertie’s Grammar Cards

26 26 Make grammar a stand-up activity 3. Student Interviews Writing Speaking

27 27 Make grammar a stand-up activity 4. Find three people who…

28 28 Make grammar a cooperative activity 1. Picture Q and A

29 29 Make grammar a cooperative activity 2.Dictation Part 1: Listening and writing

30 30 Make grammar a cooperative activity 2. Dictation: Part 2: Speaking (including pronunciation)

31 31 Make grammar a kinesthetic activity 1. Scrambled sentences

32 32 Make grammar a kinesthetic activity 2. Fill the form

33 33 Make grammar a joyous activity: Sing! Sing! (And explore grammar too!) Do You Want to Dance? (Beach Boys): asking questions I Can’t Smile Without You (Barry Manilow): can and can’t Wonderful Tonight (Eric Clapton): simple present me for more examples

34 34 Make grammar a joyous activity: Sing! How to do it… Select a song based on the grammar structure you want to teach. Use iTunes to download the song. Print the lyrics from the Internet. Develop lessons based on the lyrics and one grammar point.

35 35 Make grammar a joyous activity: Sing! Day 1: –Play the song. –Talk about what it means –Note grammar form

36 36 Make grammar a joyous activity: Sing! Day 2 and 3: Focus on vocabulary

37 37 Make grammar a joyous activity: Sing! Day 4: Practice the grammar form using vocabulary from the song.

38 38 Make grammar a joyous activity: Sing! Day 5: –Do a cloze activity. –Students listen to the song and fill in the missing words.

39 39 Make grammar a joyous activity: Sing! Sing every day! Make a Class CD with lyrics

40 40 EXPLORE: Let students “discover” grammar forms The goal of “discovering grammar forms” is for students to develop awareness of rather than production of target forms. This awareness helps learners notice target forms in future input and facilitates the eventual acquisition of these forms as implicit.

41 41 EXPLORE: Let students “discover” grammar forms Five part lesson plan: 1. Listening to comprehend 2. Listening to notice 3. Discovery 4. Checking 5. Trying it

42 42 CASE STUDY Short Answer, present tense, with to be Explanation: Present information in small, manageable chunks: Day 1: Are you talkative? Day 2: Is your sister talkative? Day 3: Are your classmates talkative?

43 43 CASE STUDY Short Answer, present tense, with to be Explanation: –Provide one reference sheet that students refer to whenever this topic is discussed –Repeat the grammar explanation prior to each activity

44 44 CASE STUDY Short Answer, present tense, with to be Exploration: Worksheets plus… –Four Corners –Gertie’s grammar cards –Class interviews –Scrambled sentences –Find 3 People Who…. –Dictation

45 45 In sum… Even though English grammar is excruciatingly difficult… You can make it fun!


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