ERIC Number: ED165498
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1978
Reference Count: 0
The Application of a New Method in Teaching ESL. CATESOL Occasional Papers, No. 4.
This paper describes a teaching method based on generative transformational grammar that has been successfully used in the ESL (English as a second language) classroom. The method and techniques are based on the Elgin-Rush study in which the problem of teaching basic writing skills to native English speakers was addressed. The present study addresses an extension of the use of the Elgin-Rush method to the teaching of grammar to intermediate ESL students. The method's underlying principles are to teach grammar by presenting the student with language data structured so as to isolate and illustrate one grammatical principle, and then to have the student formulate a rule that explains the data. The student will thus acquire more meaningful control of the grammatical rules of English, i.e. closer to the level of native competency. The 18 Algerian students involved in this study at San Diego State University were studying English to achieve high scores on the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language). The contrastive analysis technique was found most useful when used to illustrate only a specific presuppositional difference between the two languages. Four areas were chosen for grammar lessons: (1) the presuppositions of English verb combinations; (2) the presuppositions involved in complement choice in English; (3) the subordinating mechanisms of English other than use of complements; and (4) the function of prepositions in Engish. The ten exercises developed during the study are described, and samples are presented. (EJS)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: California Association of Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages.