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Teaching grammar can be approached using various methods and techniques, depending on the age group, proficiency level, and learning objectives of the students. Teaching English grammar in the classroom can be an engaging and effective process when approached with thoughtful planning and instructional strategies.
Teaching grammar should be a dynamic and interactive process. Teachers should Adapt their instructional strategies based on their student’s needs, interests, and learning styles. By providing clear explanations, meaningful practice, and regular reinforcement, teachers can help their students develop a solid foundation in English grammar.
Methods of Teaching English Grammar
There are a few methods of teaching English grammar
1. Deductive Method
2. Inductive method
3. Inductive Deductive Method
4. Incidental Method
1. Deductive Method
This traditional approach involves presenting students with a set of rules and explanations about grammar, followed by practice exercises to apply those rules. The teacher provides explicit instruction, often using textbooks or grammar reference materials, and students apply the rules through drills, worksheets, and sentence construction activities.
- This method is also called the traditional method.
- In this method, grammar is taken as an independent subject and taught with the help of a grammar book.
- The teacher uses a grammar textbook. He first tells his students rules or definitions and then explains those with the help of examples then he gives exercises and asks his pupils to apply the rules.
- The learners are supposed to memorise the definition of nouns.
- This method is not very effective as it is against the principles of teaching and students find it boring and dull.
A. Advantages of the Deductive Method
- An average teacher can use this method in countries like India.
- It is based on the theory “From generalization to example”.
- This method helps students to compare the ideas in the grammar of their mother tongue and their second or first language.
- The learner can try the grammatical questions very easily.
- The learner can respond effectively and can explain rules, structures, etc.
B. Disadvantage of the Deductive Method
- This method makes learners learn about language.
- This method cannot develop the communicative ability among learners
- The learners become inactive during classroom teaching
- This method is not child-centred but teacher-centred.
- In classroom teaching, there is hardly any use of audio-visual aids.
2. Inductive Method
In contrast to the deductive method, the inductive approach encourages students to discover grammar rules through examples and guided practice. The teacher presents authentic language examples or texts where students analyze patterns and draw conclusions about grammar rules. This method promotes critical thinking and active engagement in the learning process.
- The inductive method is also known as the informal method.
- In the Inductive method, the teacher first presents or takes the example from the students and then comes on the theory of concept.
- This method implies teaching grammar not by rules but by usage. Through the continuous practice of using words while speaking, reading and writing, grammar can be taught and therefore learnt by students.
- This is done while the teaching of a textbook or detailed translation of the textbook is carried on Grammatical implications are taught simultaneously.
- Through this method, practical uses of grammatical rules are elicited. But sometimes this method becomes time-consuming and may divert the attention of the students.
A. Advantage of the Inductive Method
- The inductive method is based on the theory “From example to generalization”. So it is very useful in classroom teaching.
- This method helps students to understand the difference between particular notions in the grammar of L1 and L2 / FL.
- This method is child-centered.
- The learners learn the particular grammar point through use. First, they have to deduce the meaning and later they generalize the form or structure.
B. Disadvantage of the Inductive Method
- This method is not useful in crowed classes like India.
- The institute must be ready to focus on the language aspect, not the mark criteria. In this method, the teacher has to use a modern method of teaching language. Only an innovative teacher can use this method.
3. Inductive-Deductive Method
This method of teaching grammar proves very successful and advantageous as it becomes practical, real and scientific. It follows all the maxims of teaching and pupils are not forced to cram the rules. This method also stimulates the power of thinking and reasoning. The shortcomings of this method are that it can be applied only to young learners. Moreover, this method is not complete in itself because sometimes students are unable to correlate examples with the topic. Through this method, students formulate rules with the help of examples. Some steps of this method are as follows.
- Students are given some examples of similar types.
- Students try to find out similarities by analyzing or observing these examples.
- Students are asked to draw some conclusions.
- Then the teacher will give the rules and give new examples and ask her pupils to verify the rules.
4. Incidental Method
This method is also known as the correlation or reference method of teaching. This method helps students to correlate grammar with other related logical structures. Students gain practical knowledge of grammatical rules.
Some disadvantages of this method are that it interferes with normal teaching Productive learning is less and sometimes creating or forming an incident related to a topic may be difficult for the teacher.
Importance of grammar in the development of communication skills
• Grammar helps in learning correct pronunciation.
• With good grammar spoken or written words gain their meaning and value.
• Knowledge of grammar improves skill of expression.
• Grammar is also helpful in increasing accuracy. Grammar frames the mind to habits of order and clearness and also to logic and rhetoric. So, grammar rules can help learners develop a habit of thinking logically and clearly.
• Grammar also helps in acquiring fluency in a particular language. The person will also learn how to organize and express the ideas in his mind without difficulty.
Importance of grammar in the development of writing skill
• The learner learns to write with correct punctuation and correct language and spelling.
• With the knowledge of grammar, parts of speech etc. the child develops an effective writing style.
• Expression of feelings, emotions, and frustrations in an impressive manner is possible only by knowledge of grammatical rules, syntax, vocabulary etc.