How to Teach English Grammar

A question I often get asked by students is how to teach English grammar. Now, there’s no easy answer to this, but there are a lot of fundamental things you can do to make it easier for whomever you are teaching the grammar to. If you look at an info graphic we did recently: Present Perfect tense Explained, you can see that there are two main things you need to get across to students when teaching English grammar, namely form and function.
If you aren’t familiar with those two terms, they basically mean how the grammar is written (form) and how it is used (function). They are both crucial in making sure students understand a particular grammar point, such as a tense. Form without function or vice versa is much like a gun without bullets- pretty useless. Throwing a bullet at something isn’t going to have the desired effect. It’s the same with form and function. Teaching your students a particular form without showing them how it is used is useless. The same goes for teaching a function for a particular tense without showing the particular form that is used with it.
Before you get into teaching grammar, you might want to have a look at an early post of ours on recognizing English tenses. 
How to teach English grammar well is not the be all and end all of a good teacher though. Being an engaging and motivating teacher is very important and sometimes these things don’t go hand in hand with teaching grammar. Being taught English grammar is often thought of as boring and for good reason. Everyone can remember having to memorize verb conjugations when they were at school and most people remember that as being uninspiring and boring. There are many ways to make teaching grammar fun and engaging.
In our online TEFL course we take you through many games and activities that you can use to get the most out of your students on grammar days or any day for that matter. If you’ve never heard of TEFL before check out two of our other posts on what TEFL stands for and what is a TEFLer? 
Learn how to teach grammar and everything else about teaching English on our Gold Teacher Training course and the world opens up to you. Work anywhere in the world and enjoy your freedom to move from place to place.
July 16, 2015

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