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ERIC Number: ED249816
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984
Pages: 29
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
English Pyramids: Using Hierarchical Diagrams for Communication Activities.
Johnson, Tia; Sheetz-Brunetti, Judy
The pyramid, or hierarchical diagram, is used in teaching writing English as a second language (ESL) as a visual representation of the way English speakers and writers organize ideas, for comparison with discourse organization in other cultures. A common problem of ESL students is an inability to organize ideas hierarchically. One class activity using the pyramid for teaching concept hierarchies is a sentence-level exercise using the Chinese zodiac to organize ideas about personality traits and practice the logic expected of English prose. Two comprehension activities at the discourse level are a listening exercise working with the statement example relationship and a reading exercise for analyzing discourse in newspaper articles. Another exercise uses pyramid diagrams to adapt textbook grammar exercises on subordinate clauses for use in understanding dictionary definitions. The technique can also be used for a variety of lexical-level activities. The benefits of this technique include the visual representation of logical organization, placement of emphasis on ideas rather than grammar, improved classroom dynamics, and some degree of success for students at all levels. (MSE)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A