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A comprehensive English grammar guide for EFL/ESL teachers


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This is a comprehensive English grammar guide designed specifically for teachers of English as a Second or Foreign language.

Published in: Education

A comprehensive English grammar guide for EFL/ESL teachers

  2. 2. What is GRAMMAR?   Grammar – the system of rules pertaining to how the sentences of a language are constructed Prescriptive Grammarians – Consider grammar to be a set of rules for the “proper” use of language   If you break these rules, you are speaking/writing incorrectly Descriptive Grammarians – Describe grammar as it is used by actual speakers of a language  Do not judge language to be correct/incorrect
  3. 3. 8 Parts of Speech Noun  Pronoun  Verb  Adjective  Adverb  Preposition  Conjunction  Interjection 
  4. 4. What is a NOUN?   Noun – A person, place, thing, or idea Common Noun – any noun that represents one or all of the members of a class   Examples: dog, cat, man, woman, education Proper Noun – a noun that is the name of a specific person, place, or thing  Examples: Susan, Charlie, Orlando, Walmart
  5. 5. Nouns: Concrete vs. Abstract  Concrete Noun - a noun that you can see, hear, smell, taste, or physically feel   Examples: pen, paper, book, fork, stapler Abstract Noun – a noun that names an emotion, an idea, or a quality; something that cannot be perceived with your five senses  Examples: education, childhood, love, patience
  6. 6. Teaching NOUNS  Pictures for concrete nouns: chicken dog horse
  7. 7. Teaching NOUNS  Pictures for singular/plural: cat cats
  8. 8. Teaching NOUNS  What about abstract nouns?  Definition/Explanation –  Explain in simple terms in English  Give   examples in sentences Explain in the student‟s L1 Translation –  Give direct translation to the student‟s L1
  9. 9. Common ELL errors with nouns  Omission of plural ~s   Unnecessary plural ~s   enjoyation Use of the with abstract nouns   every girls, each boys, one birds Wrong noun ending   five girl, six boy Ex: You must have the education to succeed. Not capitalizing proper nouns  He lives in orlando, florida.
  10. 10. Count vs. Non-Count Nouns  What are count and non-count nouns?  Count Nouns – Nouns that you can count! 3 pencils 5 birds 2 Cars
  11. 11. Count vs. Non-Count Nouns  Non-Count Nouns – Nouns that you CAN‟T count!
  12. 12. Count/Non-Count Problems  Money – Count or Non-Count? 1 dollar  20 euros  37 cents  But 1 money? 7 money?   Most other languages do not make a distinction between count and non-count nouns.
  13. 13. Count/Non-Count: Who Cares?  We DON‟T PLURALIZE non-count nouns! equipments, educations, patiences  (*sometimes non-count nouns are pluralized, but this changes the meaning: the waters of the earth)   We use ARTICLES (a, an, the) with all count nouns!   a dog, the shoe, an apple We use much/not much/how much with non-count nouns, but many/not many/how many with count nouns  How much money vs. How many money
  14. 14. What is a PRONOUN?  Pronoun – a word that can take the place of a noun   Annie teaches at Tom‟s school. his school. She teaches at In English, there are 9 types of pronouns subject pronouns, object pronouns, relative pronouns, interrogative pronouns, indefinite pronouns, reflexive pronouns, demonstrative pronouns, possessive pronouns, and reciprocal pronouns  Also, possessive adjectives act like pronouns!   In English, there are more than 40 pronouns!
  15. 15. Imagine life without PRONOUNS Last weekend Susan and Susan‟s friends went to Disney World. Susan and Susan‟s friends had never been to Disney World before. Susan and Susan‟s friends rode many rides. Susan bought many souvenirs, but Susan lost many of the souvenirs when Susan set the souvenirs down and forgot the souvenirs. Susan‟s friend Megan laughed at Susan, but Susan‟s friend Tom felt bad. Tom bought Susan some new souvenirs.
  16. 16. Why we teach PRONOUNS Last weekend Susan and her friends went to Disney World. They had never been there before. They rode many rides. Susan bought many souvenirs, but she lost many of them when she set them down and forgot them. Her friend Megan laughed at her, but her friend Tom felt bad. He bought her some new souvenirs. Pronouns are important to teach, because we use them a lot!
  17. 17. Teaching PRONOUNS  Personal Subject Pronouns I, you, he, she, it, we, they  I am a student. He is a doctor.   How to teach: Jane is a teacher. Jane is a teacher. She is a teacher.  Provide multiple examples for all.   Potential Problems:  Many languages have multiple forms of „you‟  Spanish:  tú, usted, ustedes, vosotros you and it can also be Personal Object Pronouns
  18. 18. Teaching PRONOUNS  Personal Object Pronouns used for direct and indirect objects  me, you, him, her, it, us, them  I gave the pencil to him. (I gave it to him.)   How to teach: Same as Subject Pronouns  I met Tom. I met Tom. I met him.  Provide multiple examples for all.  Act it out! 
  19. 19. Teaching PRONOUNS  Personal Object Pronouns, cont’d  Potential Problems:   you and it can also be Personal Subject Pronouns her can also be a Possessive Adjective Some languages have different pronouns for direct and indirect objects  Russian, indirect object „him‟ – ему  Russian, direct object „him‟ – его 
  20. 20. Teaching PRONOUNS  Possessive Pronouns Show to whom or what a thing belongs  mine, yours, his, hers, ours, theirs  The book is hers. The chocolate is mine.   How to teach:  Act out with things!
  21. 21. Teaching PRONOUNS  Possessive Pronouns, cont’d  Potential Problems: His is also a possessive adjective  In some languages, some or all possessive and direct object pronouns are the same.  Sometimes they‟re possessive adjectives, too.  Russian: её/его = her/him, hers/his, her/his  personal possessive possessive object pronouns adjectives pronouns
  22. 22. Teaching Possessive Adjectives  Possessive Adjectives resemble pronouns  sometimes called possessive determiners  similar to possessive pronouns, but modify a noun instead of replacing it.  my, your, his, her, its, our, their  My cat is black and white. Her name is Charlie. Her moustache is funny looking.   How to teach:  Use lots and lots of examples! Act!
  23. 23. Teaching Possessive Adjectives  Possessive Adjectives, cont’d.  Potential Problems: Confusion between possessive pronouns and possessive adjectives  The book is her/hers. The chocolate is my/mine.  Mine/My cat is black and white. Her/Hers book is blue.  His is also a possessive pronoun 
  24. 24. Teaching PRONOUNS  Demonstrative Pronouns this, that, these, those  Can be subjects or direct objects.  Subjects: This is the book Steve gave me. Those are cute shoes.  Direct Objects: Steve gave that to me. I bought those yesterday.   How to teach:  Act out with things!
  25. 25. Teaching PRONOUNS    Demonstrative Pronouns, cont’d Potential Problems: Students whose L1s don‟t have both the [ i ] and the [ I ] sound will have difficulty hearing the difference between this and these
  26. 26. Teaching PRONOUNS  Interrogative Pronouns who, whom, what, which, whose  Represent the thing that we don‟t know  Who is she? What is that? Whose purse is this?   How to teach: Translate words into students‟ L1  Focus on one question word at a time  Offer lots of example questions  Teach as „question words‟ not as pronouns. 
  27. 27. Teaching PRONOUNS  Interrogative Pronouns, cont’d  Potential Problems:  In many languages, that and what translate to just one word  Russian: что = that/what  Spanish: qué = what; que = that  French: numerous words translate to what and that, although que can mean both  Textbooks typically teach these as “question words” (including when, where, why, and how) not as Interrogative Pronouns
  28. 28. Teaching PRONOUNS  Relative Pronouns Connects a relative clause to the rest of the sentence  who, that, which, whom  Many are also Interrogative Pronouns! (Used differently)  I want to return the book that you lent me last week.  The man who is standing over there is my brother.   How to teach: Don‟t introduce until you introduce relative clauses  Translation helps! 
  29. 29. Teaching PRONOUNS  Relative Pronouns, cont’d  Potential Problems: Same as with Interrogative Pronouns: in many languages, that and what translate to just one word  Used with more complicated grammatical structures (relative clauses)  In English we often omit relative pronouns; in other languages you can‟t do this!  I want to return the book that you lent me. = I want to return the book you lent me.
  30. 30. Teaching PRONOUNS  Indefinite Pronouns anybody, somebody, nobody, someone, something, no one, none, each, etc.  Does not refer to a specific person or thing  I heard something at the door, but when I opened it, nobody was there.   How to teach:   Teach as vocabulary as they appear in your text Translation helps!
  31. 31. Teaching PRONOUNS  Indefinite Pronouns, cont’d  Potential Problems:  Double negative confusion:  I didn‟t see anybody. (correct)  I didn‟t see nobody. (incorrect)  Indefinite pronouns are SINGULAR in English, but they can be plural in other languages  Everyone has a car. (correct)  Everyone have a car. (incorrect)
  32. 32. Teaching PRONOUNS  Reflexive Pronouns used to refer to a subject that has already been named within the sentence  myself, yourself, himself, herself, itself, ourselves, yourselves, themselves  I bought myself a latte. Tom gave himself a pat on the back.   How to teach:    Explanation and modeling Teach as vocabulary as they appear in your text Translation helps!
  33. 33. Teaching PRONOUNS  Reflexive Pronouns, cont’d  Potential Problems Generally straightforward  Russian speakers will often use them when they are unnecessary (L1 interference)  Я чувствую себе счастливый   I feel myself happy
  34. 34. Teaching PRONOUNS  Reciprocal Pronouns used to identify an action or feeling that is reciprocated  always refers to more than one person  each other, one another  Sue and Tom gave presents to each other.  They love one another.   How to teach: Explain: there must be two or more people, things or groups involved  they must be doing the same thing 
  35. 35. Teaching PRONOUNS  Reciprocal Pronouns, cont’d  Potential Problems  Students may try to use them with a single noun or pronoun  Tom bought each other a gift. (incorrect)  Students may substitute „themselves‟ for „each other‟ or „one another‟  Tom and Sue loved themselves. (incorrect)
  36. 36. English Pronoun Evolution To thine own self be true, and it must follow, as the night the day, thou canst not then be false to any man. *** O thou invisible spirit of wine, if thou hast no name to be known by, let us call thee devil. ~William Shakespeare 1564-1616
  37. 37. English Pronoun Evolution Subject Pronoun thou Object Possessive Reflexive Possessive Pronoun Pronoun Pronoun Adjective thee thine thyself thy Nowadays seen mainly in Shakespeare and the King James Bible.
  38. 38. What is a VERB?  Verb – a word that shows ACTION or BEING   In English we have 12 verb tenses:   I go to the park. Sue visits Mary. You are a student. simple present, simple past, simple future, present progressive, past progressive, future progressive, present perfect, past perfect, future perfect, present perfect progressive, past perfect progressive, and future perfect progressive In English, each verb has 5 principal parts  Infinitive, base form, past form, past participle form, and present participle form
  39. 39. To be  The verb to be expresses being (surprise!)  He  is sad. They are students. It was fun. It can also be used as a helping verb (also called an auxiliary verb) I am teaching. She has been living in Orlando for two years.  7 forms: be, am, is, are, was, were, been
  40. 40. To be – Simple Present Conjugation: I He She It You We They am is is My name is Jane. I am a teacher. Where are you from? are In Russian, there is no present tense verb to be. are are In Russian you say: I teacher. It green. They hungry. is Spanish has two – ser and estar!
  41. 41. Other Verbs: Simple Present I go to the park on Tuesdays. Tom goes to the park on Wednesdays. I teach TSL 4240 on Tuesdays and Thursdays. You come to this class twice a week. Susan lives in Miami. What is the pattern here? When do we usually use the simple present? We use the simple present for regular, constant, or repeated actions.
  42. 42. Other Verbs: Simple Present Conjugation: to walk to teach to have walk teach have I He walks teaches has She walks teaches has walks teaches has It You walk teach have We walk teach have They walk teach have to do do does does does do do do
  43. 43. Simple Present Questions: BE Question Word + BE Who is he? How are you? Where am I? He is Tom. I am fine. You are in class. BE as Question Word Are you a student? Is he okay? Am I right? Yes, I am. Yes, he is. Yes, you are. No, I‟m not. No, he isn‟t. No, you aren‟t.
  44. 44. Simple Present Questions Question Word + Verb ELLs will want to say: I do live in Orlando. Where do you live? What does he thinks about it? I live in Orlando. He does thinks it‟s great. What does he think about it? He thinks it‟s great. What do you do? I am a teacher. What does she do? She is a student. This question is VERY confusing for ELLs!! They often think it means „What are you doing?‟ They often want to answer with do
  45. 45. Simple Present Questions Do as Question Word Do you like coffee? Yes, I do. I like coffee. No, I don‟t. I don‟t like coffee. Does he like coffee? Yes, he does. He likes coffee. No, he doesn‟t. He doesn‟t like coffee. ELLs will want to say: You like coffee? Does he likes coffee? Yes, I like. Yes, he likes. No, he doesn‟t likes.
  46. 46. Present Progressive    Also known as Present Continuous BE + present participle (~ing form) I am teaching. You are studying. He is thinking. When do we use Present Progressive? The main use of Present Progressive is for things we are doing now. We can also use it to talk about the future: I‟m leaving for Georgia tomorrow.
  47. 47. Present Progressive Questions Questions with Question Words Question Word + BE + noun/pronoun + verb~ing What is he studying? Where is she going? Why are they eating there? How are you feeling?
  48. 48. Present Progressive Questions Yes/No Questions Be + noun/pronoun + verb~ing  Are you working on the project?  NOTE: Questions that begin with a  Yes, I am. I am working on the project. VERB  No, I‟m not. I‟m not working on the project. require a Is Tom studying right now? yes/no  Yes, he is. He is studying right now. answer!   No, he isn‟t. He isn‟t studying right now. Are they coming tomorrow? Yes, they are. They are coming tomorrow.  No, they aren‟t. They aren‟t coming tomorrow. 
  49. 49. Present Progressive Problems What is he doing? / What are you doing? Very difficult for ELLs! They will want to answer with doing: He is doing study. I am doing eat. Question formation errors: What he is studying? Does he studying? He is studying? Overgeneralization: I am work at UCF. He is works at Red Lobster.
  50. 50. Simple Past: BE  BE has two simple past forms: WAS and WERE Conjugation: I He She It You We They was was was was were were were I was in high school in 1995. We were best friends.
  51. 51. Simple Past: Questions with BE Questions with Question Words: How was your weekend? Where were you yesterday? Why was Tom late? Yes/No Questions: Were you in Kissimmee yesterday? Yes, I was. / No, I wasn‟t. Was Tom a good student in high school? Yes, he was. / No, he wasn‟t.
  52. 52. Simple Past: Other Verbs Typically verb+ed  Tom visited his sister yesterday.  I lived in Korea in 2010.  We studied German in college. When do we use the simple past? We use the simple past if we know WHEN something happened!
  53. 53. Simple Past: Questions Questions with Question Words: Question word + did + noun/pronoun + verb Where did you live in 2001? I lived in Tennessee. What did Tom study in college? Tom studied history. What did you do yesterday? ELLs will want to answer with “I did…” ELLs will want to say: Where did you lived? What did Tom studied? Where you lived? Where Tom studied? I did live in Tennessee. Tom did study history.
  54. 54. Simple Past: Irregular Verbs English has MANY irregular verbs. Here are a few: Verb begin break come do drive drink eat forget give Simple Past began broke came did drove drank ate forgot gave Verb go have know make say see write think teach Simple Past went had knew made said saw wrote thought taught
  55. 55. Simple Past: Irregular Verbs  ELLs will often add ~ed to irregular verbs  My car breaked yesterday.  My car broked yesterday.  I drinked some juice.  I dranked some juice. NOTE: Teach simple past using REGULAR verbs BEFORE introducing irregular verbs!
  56. 56. Simple Future: will will + verb I will go to Tampa next week. We will eat spaghetti tonight. Questions with Question Words: Question word + will + noun/pronoun + verb What will you wear to the party? When will Tom propose to Susan? ELLs will want to say: What you will wear to the party?
  57. 57. Simple Future: will Yes/No Questions: Will you go to Susan‟s wedding? Yes, I will. / No, I won’t. PROBLEM! We don‟t really use „will‟ all that often. We usually use the present progressive or „going to‟ instead. Present Progressive: Are you buying Susan a gift? I am thinking about buying her a crockpot.
  58. 58. Future with Going To BE + going to + verb I am going to eat spaghetti for dinner. He is going to visit me next week. They are going to come over at 4:00. How do we typically pronounce „going to‟? Gonna!
  59. 59. Future with Going To Questions with Question Words: Question Word + BE + noun/pronoun + going to + verb What are you going to study first? What is she going to wear to the party? Yes/No Questions: BE + noun/pronoun + going to + verb Are you going to eat that? Yes, I am. No, I‟m not.
  60. 60. What is a Past Participle? Many English verb tenses require the Past Participle. With regular verbs, it‟s the same as the simple past: Simple Past: walked, visited, studied Past Participle: walked, visited, studied With irregular verbs, sometimes the simple past and the past participle are the same, but sometimes they‟re different. Same: had – had, said – said, made – made
  61. 61. What is a Past Participle? Many irregular verbs have a completely different form for the past participle! go – went – gone do – did – done eat – ate – eaten know – knew – known see – saw – seen be – was/were – been
  62. 62. Present Perfect have/has + Past Participle I have seen the new Star Trek movie. She has been to Costa Rica. They have eaten live octopus. When do we use present perfect? We use it for something that happened in the PAST, but we don‟t know / don‟t specify WHEN. I have been to Korea. I was there in 2010. ELLs have a hard time deciding when to use which form.
  63. 63. Present Perfect Questions Yes/No Questions – more common that Question Words Have/has + noun/pronoun + past participle Has she gone to China? Yes, she has. She has gone to China. No, she hasn‟t. She hasn‟t gone to China. Have you eaten lobster? Yes, I have. / No, I haven‟t. With question words, more rhetorical: What have you done? Where has it gone?
  64. 64. The Other Tenses  Past Progressive Sometimes called Past Continuous  was/were + verb~ing  I was watching TV when you called.   Future Progressive Sometimes called Future Continuous  will + be + verb~ing  At 4:00, I will be napping.   Past Perfect had + past participle  I had taken a sip before I realized the milk had spoiled. 
  65. 65. The Other Tenses  Future Perfect will have + past participle  By 6:00 I will have finished my nap.   Present Perfect Progressive Sometimes called Present Perfect Continuous  have/has + been + verb~ing  I have been grading papers for seven hours.   Past Perfect Progressive Sometimes called Past Perfect Continuous  had been + verb~ing  I had been watching TV for an hour when you called. 
  66. 66. The Other Tenses  Future Perfect Progressive Sometimes called Future Perfect Continuous  will have been + verb~ing  By the time this PowerPoint is finished, I will have been working on it for many hours! 
  67. 67. Phrasal Verbs  A verb made of a combination of two or more words Examples: cut off, look up, turn off, look after  I cut off my jeans and made some cute shorts.  She looked up the meaning in her dictionary.  Turn off the lights when you leave the room.  Can you look after my dog this weekend?   These are EXTREMELY difficult for ELLs! Most other languages do NOT have phrasal verbs  ELLs will translate the parts of the verb separately  Phrasal verbs lack literal translations  Phrasal verbs often have more than one meaning 
  68. 68. Phrasal Verbs  Multiple meanings (polysemy) I cut off my jeans to make some cute shorts.  I was cut off by a guy in a red Camaro.   Verb inflections (endings) are added to the first part  She cuts off her jeans  He looked up the meaning  ELLs may say „she cut offs her jeans‟ or „he look upped the meaning‟  (Phrasal verbs CAN be used in all 12 tenses!)
  69. 69. Phrasal Verbs   Phrasal verbs can be Separable or Non-Separable Separable phrasal verbs can be separated I need you to fill out this form.  I need you to fill this form out.  Tom will pick up Susan at the airport.  Tom will pick Susan up at the airport.   Non-Separable phrasal verbs can‟t be separated. Can you look after my dog?  You can count on me to help.  I don‟t know how you put up with me. 
  70. 70. Modal Verbs   would, could, should, can, might, may, must, ought to, had better modal + base form of the verb ELLs will want to say:      I would like a soda. (I‟d like a Coke.) I would to like a soda. I could pick you up if you want. He could meets us. He coulds meet us. We should go together. Tom might meet us there. Negative = modal + not + verb    I can’t lift this! You shouldn’t say that. Susan might not be able to go. ELLs will want to say: I don‟t can lift this. I no can lift this. She doesn‟t should say… She no should say…
  71. 71. Modal Verbs   Questions with Question Words Question Word + modal + noun/pronoun + verb What should I do?  Where can I buy pink shoes?  What might Tom do when he finds out?    Yes/No Questions Modal + noun/pronoun + verb Should I buy these pink shoes?  Would you like to eat some candy?  Can you babysit Sally tonight? 
  72. 72. Modal Verbs & Present Perfect  modal + have + past participle I would have gone to the party, but I had to work.  He shouldn‟t have eaten all those doughnuts.  She might have taken it with her.   Often contracted: would‟ve, could‟ve, should‟ve  Common native speaker error: would of, could of
  73. 73. Modal Verbs & Present Perfect     Questions with question words Question word + noun/pronoun + have + past participle  What would you have done?  Where should we have gone? Yes/No Questions modal + noun/pronoun + have + past participle Should we have eaten that?  Would you have done the same for me? 
  74. 74. What is an ADJECTIVE?  Adjective – a word that describes a noun or a pronoun Typically, we think of adjectives this way: The black cat sat on the sunny deck and watched a blue bird.  HOWEVER, articles (a, an, the) are adjectives, too!  The black cat sat on the sunny deck and watched a blue bird.   Adjectives can be regular, comparative, or superlative  Examples: short, shorter, shortest
  75. 75. Adjectives   Adjectives describe nouns or pronouns. In English, adjectives come before the noun   A red bird sat on the mirror of the blue car. Adjectives answer the following questions: Which?  How many?  How much?  What kind? 
  76. 76. Adjectives  In some languages (such as Spanish), adjectives change based on the number and gender of the nouns they describe. Una blusa blanc Un gato blanco Dos gatos blancos Dos blusas blanca
  77. 77. Adjectives  In English, adjectives do not change based on the number and gender of the nouns they describe. A white cat A white blouse Because of L1 interference, a Spanish speaker might say “I have two cats whites” or “I am wearing a blouse white.” Two white cats Two white blouses
  78. 78. Articles are Adjectives!  a, an, and the are articles – a type of adjective!  a and an are called indefinite articles Indefinite articles are used for non-specific things, or the first time something is mentioned.  I watched a movie last night.   We use a before nouns beginning with a consonant, and an before nouns beginning with a vowel.  an apple, a banana
  79. 79. Articles are Adjectives!  the is called a definite article Definite articles are used for specific things, or the second time something is mentioned  I watched a movie last night. The movie was really good.   Articles are VERY difficult for students whose L1 does not use articles.
  80. 80. Comparative Adjectives    Comparative adjectives are used to compare two things. End in ~er Often followed by „than‟     Susan is tall, but Tom is taller. Tom is taller than Susan. Tom is 51, and Susan is 43. Susan is younger than Tom. Tom is older than Susan. Age and height are good ways to demonstrate these to your students.
  81. 81. Superlative Adjectives    Superlative adjectives are used to compare three or more things End in ~est Usually preceded by „the‟ (unless using a possessive adjective)     Tom is the tallest person I have ever met. Susan is the shortest student in the class. Sally is my youngest cousin. Age and height are good ways to demonstrate these to your students, too!
  82. 82. Possessive Adjectives  Don‟t forget possessive adjectives! my, your, his, her, its, our, their  See slides 22-23 
  83. 83. What is an ADVERB?   Adverb – a word that modifies a verb, an adjective, or another adverb Modifying a Verb:   Modifying an Adjective:   Gas prices rose sharply. The profits were vastly lower this quarter. Modifying an Adverb:  The prices rose incredibly fast.
  84. 84. Adverbs  Adverbs are used to describe verbs, adjectives or other adverbs.  Often end in ~ly (but not always!)   Often and always are adverbs! Adverbs answer the following questions: How?  When?  Where?  How often?  To what degree? 
  85. 85. Adverbs of Manner   Adverbs of manner tell how something happens Adverbs of manner come after the main verb if there is no direct object.    If there is a direct object, adverbs of manner come after the direct object.     I ran quickly. He worked hard. She performed her work skillfully. The cashier answered me rudely. You know this subject very well. ELLs will often have trouble with adverb placement:   The cashier answered rudely me. You know very well this subject.
  86. 86. Adverbs of Frequency  Adverbs of frequency tell how often something happens  Common adverbs of frequency include: always, usually, often, sometimes, seldom, rarely, an d never   I always drive my car to work; I never ride the bus. Adverbs of frequency come before main verbs but after be, modals, or helping verbs.   Our class has always met in VAB 113. I am often sleepy.
  87. 87. Adverbs of Degree  Adverbs of degree describe the intensity or strength (or weakness) of an action  Some examples: almost, hardly, extremely, very  Usually come before an adjective or another adverb, but sometimes come just before the verb.     I almost never eat seafood. This box is extremely heavy! ELLs will over-use very. ELLs will confuse hard/hardly.
  88. 88. Prepositions What do prepositions do? Prepositions show the relationship between a noun or pronoun and the rest of the sentence. among under next to up in in front of through between with down on behind ahead of
  89. 89. What is a PREPOSITION?  Preposition – shows the relationship between a noun (or a pronoun) and the rest of a sentence   This is not a helpful definition! Types of prepositions include Prepositions of Place (The mouse is in the box.)  Prepositions of Time (It will start at 12:00.)  Prepositions of Movement (I will walk from the park to the store.) 
  90. 90. Helpful hint! The squirrel ran up the tree. The squirrel ran down the tree. The squirrel ran next to the tree. The squirrel ran through the trees. The squirrel ran between the trees. The squirrel ran past the trees. The squirrel ran into the tree. The squirrel ran under the tree. * of and for are common prepositions that don‟t really work with the squirrel/tree
  91. 91. Teaching Prepositions of Place  What is a preposition of place?  It tells you where something is:  The book is on the table.  Use pictures! Mice are easier to draw than squirrels   Move objects and students around the classroom. The backpack is under the table.  Susan is next to Tom. 
  92. 92. Teaching at, on, & in From: Keys to Teaching Grammar to English Language Learners by Keith S. Folse
  93. 93. Prepositions don‟t always translate. In English we say, “I am on the bus.” In Russian, if you say “I am on the bus” (“Я на автобусе”) this means “I am on top of the bus”! (Russians actually say “Я в автобусе” or “I am in the bus.”) *L1 interference causes ELLs a lot of problems with learning prepositions because they don‟t translate well.
  94. 94. Other Concerns:  Not all prepositions exist in all languages. I walked along the river yesterday.   Many languages don‟t have a word that means along! Prepositions are often polysemous (they have more than one meaning) – especially when used in idioms.     I got home just in time. Don‟t beat around the bush. I want to keep an eye on him. Superman saved her at the last minute.
  95. 95. What is a CONJUNCTION?  Conjunction – connects parts of a sentence (clauses) together  Conjunctions include:  coordinating conjunctions – for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so  FANBOYS  subordinating conjunctions – introduces a dependent clause  Includes words like after, because, if, since, unless  correlative conjunctions – transitional devices that connect two main ideas  Includes words like however, likewise, nonetheless
  96. 96. What is an INTERJECTION?   Interjection – A word that expresses strong feeling or emotion. Examples: Great!  Exactly!  What?!  Awesome!  Ouch! 
  97. 97. The Apostrophe We use the apostrophe for contractions: I‟m a teacher. We use apostrophes to show possession: Jane‟s students. We do NOT use apostrophes to show plurality: The two dog‟s were hungry. The two dogs were hungry. 
  98. 98. Contractions  The shortened version of the written and spoken forms of a word, created by the removal of a sound or sounds, which are replaced by an apostrophe. Examples: can + not = can‟t did + not = didn‟t I + am = I‟m
  99. 99. Common Contractions BE I am = I‟m he is = he‟s he + has = he‟s she + has = she‟s she is = she‟s it + has = it‟s it is = it‟s you are = you‟re we are = we‟re they are = they‟re was not = wasn‟t were not = weren‟t will not = won‟t Had or Would? I + had I + would he + had he + would she + had she + would it + had it + would you + had you + would we + had we + would they + had they + would I‟d he‟d she‟d it‟d you‟d we‟d they‟d
  100. 100. Other Common Contractions can + not = can‟t does + not = doesn‟t ELL Errors: do + not = don‟t Are you hungry? did + not = didn‟t Yes, I‟m. have + not = haven‟t has + not = hasn‟t Confusion between is/has contractions Confusion between had/would contractions had + not = hadn‟t Confusion between were and we‟re I + will = I‟ll I + have = I‟ve might + have = might‟ve would + have = would‟ve
  101. 101. Possession ’ This is Jane s cat, Charlie. ’ This is Charlie s moustache.
  102. 102. Possession The student’s book. (One student has a book.) The students’ book. (Two or more students have a book.)
  103. 103. Possession The puppy’s food bowl. The puppies’ food bowl.
  104. 104. Possession ’ The bird s feathers are red. It? ’ It s feathers – or – Its feathers ?
  105. 105. What‟s the problem?
  106. 106. Acronyms & Apostrophes English Language Learner = ELL The ELL‟s textbook The ELLs‟ textbook Jane and her ELLs
  107. 107. An Excellent Resource: This book is an amazing resource for EFL/ESL teachers, and it also helped me put this presentation together. I highly recommend it to all EFL/ESL teachers, especially those who are just starting out and who have never taught English grammar before. It can be purchased here: