Grammar Coaching Sydney

Grammar Coaching Sydney

Grammar Coaching Sydney

There was an ‘old school’ approach to language that continued into the 1960s or 1970s – students were taught the rules of grammar by memorizing rules and writing examples. This fell out of favor because it was seen as dull and unnatural. A new school of thought arose that said we learn to read and write as we speak, as a whole language. So at least two generations of students were expected to learn language by using language and interacting with others. This actually worked fairly well for most situations. But it had its limits.

The formal instruction in grammar that was previously drummed into students of the past was considered by some to be too limiting. It was a straight jacket that limited creativity. Students tended to write in the most basic sentence patterns, simply following the most simple application of the rules, and resisted more complex and more creative options, even when these options were advantageous. The same students might speak in a more flexible manner, using anything from slang to poetic metaphors, but they wrote in plain, simple sentences.

Foreign students learning English often learn the language in the same manner that English students learned grammar a few generations ago. That are taught grammatical rules about the ‘subject’ and ‘object’ of a sentence, and which word is modified by the verb (doing word). these same foreign students struggled when they tried to speak English. It was almost a mathematical, analytical approach to language. They couldn’t speak fluently because they did not learn the language organically. After several years of practice, speaking with native English speakers, the language skills would improve.

Leaning language organically, by use and practice, is preferable. But it has its limits. It is too easy to pick up bad habits when exposed to poorly written texts or to poorly spoken English. And the individual may not realize that spoken language does not always work as written language, written language does not have the inflections, emphasis, or sentence structure of regular daily speech. Formal grammar instruction goes a long way to getting rid of these shortcomings. The formal study of language is also essential if students discuss and analyze language.

The modern approach to English language teaching (which may not be the final approach) is to initially teach language organically, by speaking, then reading and writing. And then to learn ‘meta language’, which is an analysis that includes grammatical rules. This looks to be the best of both worlds.

Grammar or meta-language is about the structure of language, and helps students to discuss language and not just use it by habit.

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We believe that the new combination of organic learning followed by language analysis should provide the best of both approaches to communication, and encourage rather than limit creativity.
As a bonus, some studies suggest that the learning of grammar/language analysis should help with the acquisition of a second language later on.

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