Wednesday, 22 August 2007

Comparing Grammar Contents

Dear everyone,
I've browsed through two books that are designed for intermediate students and which have a grammatical component to the syllabus.
The task I was to carry out, required me to compare those two books and think about:

(a) To what extent do you find similarities and differences in the selection and sequencing of structures?
They were more or less the same as regards grammar at the beginning of the units but later on, as from unit three more or less, they changed the order in which the items were presented. In one of them 'functions' were also included in the column of grammar.
Both of them had sections in which grammar was recycled.
One of the books ended up explaining 'third conditional' and the other did not. This may be connected to the fact that one of the books is aimed at teens and the other to adults and teens.

(b) Is an explanation given (for example, in the teacher's book) for the grammatical content and its order?
No, there is no explanation explicitly given. However, at the beginning of the English File Intermediate book, there is a revision from the previous book or the contents students are supposed to have at the beginning of the course to use the book.

(c) In what ways would the grammatical content of either of the books be suitable for your own intermediate learners?
The grammatical context would be suitable because the activities presented in both books are contextualized, dynamic and appealing to them. They are useful to be carried out so as to practice or present a topic.

You are now invited to leave a comment as regards grammar... or any other topic and suggest, if you want, some books you can use with your intermediate students and why do you like them.
See you soon,

· HEDGE, Tricia (2000), Teaching and Learning in the Language Classroom, UK, OUP; Chapter 5 (Discussion Topics and Projects # 1 - p. 179)
· WETZ, Ben (2005), Adventures Intermediate Student’s Book, UK, OUP, pp. 2 and 3
· OXENDEN, Clive (1999), English File Intermediate Student’s Book, UK, OUP, pp. 2 to 5


Gladys Baya said...

Looks like you didn't find many differences between your two books, did you, Lore? It'd be interesting, I believe, to repeat the experience working with two books published in different decades... You'd be surprised to see how much grammar teaching can differ!

Weird you couldn't find any explanation to the approach favoured for the teaching of grammar, at least in the teacher's books...

Go haead!

Loreley said...

I have browsed through some old books like 8 years ago because my aunt gave some to me when I started teaching (before becoming a teacher). I didn't like them then so I gave them away. They were REALLY old and I didn't like the way everything was presented. Of course, they were purely grammar based with monotonous exercises.
I don't have the teacher's books of those books. That's why I couldn't find which approach they follow... but now that I think of it, I could find out on the internet.
See you soon,

Gladys Baya said...

Now I understand why you wouldn't find anything stated about approaches, Lore. It's not the kind of message usually addressed to sutdents, is it? ;-)
Anyway, you needn't go many years back in time to be able to identify significant variations in the approaches to the teaching of grammar followed by popular EFL textbooks, I believe... Just pop into our college library one of these days, and ask for the "oldest textbook" we have(about 20 years old, I believe?)... An eye-opener, trust me!
Big hug,