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Three Fun Ideas for Teaching Grammar

The article under consideration reveals the main ideas in teaching grammar with students as it has become one of the main aspects in learning foreign language nowadays.

Grammar. The very mention of the word strikes fear into the heart of the staunchest language learner. Many English teachers also feel the pit of their stomach churn at the thought of preparing and giving a grammar lesson. But what are we to do? If lexis and vocabulary are the building blocks of language, then certainly grammar is the mortar or structure that holds them together. Teaching it and learning it are therefore inescapable. The only thing to do then is to make it as interesting, pleasant or at least as painless as possible. Here are some ideas:

  1. Use Grammar Games

Both learners and teachers alike love to use games in the English classroom. So, make extensive use of games to teach and reinforce critical grammar points. What, you say you don't know any grammar games? Or perhaps you'll quip that you don't have a good stock of them so you can't count on regularly employing them for use in your classes? They abound on English teacher websites, commercial publications and in the minds and hearts of your colleagues worldwide. At least create a game based on popular games you're familiar with. Use pursuit and turn-taking games, card games, board games to get maximum involvement of your learners.

  1. Use movie and video clips

"Go ahead, make my day." Now who was it exactly that first said that? Yes, yes I'm sure you know. Now change it to other verb tenses. Change it to a question. Change it into different question forms. Make it imperative. You get the idea. "I'll make him an offer he can't refuse." If you don't know the initial speaker of that line, three slaps with a wet noodle for you. What verb tense is there? Now change it into different forms.

Watch a three to seven minute clip from a movie scene or video. Write down what grammar forms you hear. Then have the class do it. Go back, watch the clip again and check. Do it until you're satisfied.

  1. Use Audio-only Segments

Now it's getting tougher. Listen to an audio clip. A commercial, story, dialogue or news segment. Note the grammar points used. Pick an interesting clip that's not too long. It must have snappy dialogue either between two characters or a quippy comeback on the part of one of them. You could even have the learners suggest some clips, programs and / or scenes to use.

So don't let the term "grammar" strike fear into the hearts of your learners (or you) ever again. Work up some grammar - teaching activities using these techniques and grammar could become your - and their - favorite lesson type.


  1. Hulstijh, J.(1995) “Not All Grammar Rules are Equal: Giving Grammar Instruction its Proper Place in Foreign Language Teaching” in Schmidt, R. (Ed), Attention and Awareness in Foreign Language Learning, pp. 359-387, Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press