Techniques of Teaching Grammar

DOI : 10.17577/IJERTCONV5IS13122

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Techniques of Teaching Grammar

Evanglin Sherly. J

I Year, Department of Electronics and Communication Engineering

K. Ramakrishnan College of Technology Trichy.


I Year, Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering

Saranathan College of Engineering Trichy.

Abstract – This paper makes an attempt to establish the techniques of teaching grammar. Grammar knowledge has been regarded crucial to the ability to use language. For this reason we have developed a few procedures like practice and consciousness-raising, explicit and implicit knowledge, deductive and inductive approaches for teaching grammar.

Keywords: Practice And Consciousness-Raising, Explicit / Implicit Knowledge, Deductive/Inductive Approaches.


Grammar gains its prominence particularly in English as a foreign language. Practically, in the teaching of grammar, learners are taught rules of language commonly known as sentence patterns. The knowledge of grammatical rules enable learners to know and apply how such sentence patterns should be put together. Further, grammar is thought to furnish the basis for a set of language skills: listening, speaking, reading and writing. In listening and speaking, grammar plays a crucial part in grasping and expressing spoken language , since learning the grammar of a language is considered necessary to acquire the capability of producing grammatically acceptable utterances in the language. In reading, grammar enables learners to comprehend sentence interrelationship in a paragraph, a passage and a text. In the context of writing, grammar allows the learners to put their ideas into intelligible sentences so that they can successfully communicate in a written form. Lastly, in the case of vocabulary, grammar provides a pathway to learners about how some lexical items should be combined into a good sentence so that meaningful and communicative statements or expressions can be formed. Learning grammar students can express meanings in the form of phrases, clauses and sentences. Many teachers think that teaching grammar separately is not beneficial to learners, since the learners only learn how the language is constructed, and very often when they are given grammatical rules, the learners work well on such cases. Therefore, in this paper, We would like to propose a five-step procedure for teaching grammar. This procedure incorporates the notions of practice and consciousness- raising, explicit and implicit knowledge, deductive and inductive approaches for teaching grammar.


Practice and consciousness-raising are important as they play an important role in successful grammar teaching.


A specific grammatical feature is isolated for focused attention.

The learners are required to produce sentences or statements comprising the targeted feature.

The learners will be provided with opportunities for repetition of the targeted feature.

There is expectation that the learners will perform the grammatical feature correctly.

The learners receive feedback on whether their performance of the grammatical structure is correct or incorrect.


Consciousness- raising is an attempt to equip learners with an understanding of a specific grammatical feature. It is an approach to teaching of grammar in which instruction in grammar (form-focused activities) is viewed as a way of raising learners awareness of grammatical features of the language. The main characteristics of consciousness-raising activities involve:

Efforts to isolate a specific linguistic feature for focused attention.

Data which illustrate the targeted feature and explicit rule description or explanation.

Intellectual effort to understand the targeted feature .

Understanding of the grammatical structure by the learners lead to clarification in the form of further data and description or explanation.

Articulation at rules to describe the grammatical feature.


Students may become good at grammar,when told to write and speak through, they often make grammatical mistakes. This case is very challenging to solve. When facing this problem, particularly with adult learners, it is useful to be aware that there are two kinds of knowledge necessary to gain proficiency in a second language. These are known as explicit (conscious learning) and implicit (subconscious acquisition) knowledge .


Explicit knowledge deals with language and the uses for which language can be put. This knowledge facilitates the intake and development of implicit language and it is useful to monitor language output. Explicit knowledge is generally accessible through controlled processing. In short, it is the conscious knowledge of grammatical rules learned through formal classroom instruction. Explicit knowledge is also obtained through the practice of error correction, which is taught to help learners attain the correct mental representation of a rule.


Implicit knowledge is automatic and easily accessed and provides a great contribution to building communicative skills. Implicit knowledge is subconscious and internalized knowledge of language that is easily accessed during spontaneous language tasks.

Implicit knowledge is gained in the natural language learning process. It means that a person applies a certain grammatical rule in the same way as a child who acquires her/his first language.



A deductive approach is derived from the notion that deductive reasoning works from the general to the specific. In this case, rules, principles, concepts, or theories are presented first, and then their applications are treated. In conclusion, when we use deduction, we reason from general to specific principles. Dealing with the teaching of grammar, the deductive approach can also be called rule driven learning. In such an approach, a grammar rule is explicitly presented to students and followed by practice applying the rule. The deductive approach maintains that a teacher teaches grammar by presenting grammatical rules, and then examples of sentences are presented. The deductive approach commences with the presentation of a rule taught and then is followed by examples in which the rule is applied. In this regard, learners are expected to engage with it through the study and manipulation of examples.


The rules should be correct.

The rules need to be clearly taught. The rules ought to be simple.

The rules need to make use of concepts already familiar to the learners.

The rules ought to be relevant to the students needs.

Most importantly, when the rules are presented in the deductive approach, the presentation should be illustrated with examples.


An inductive approach comes from inductive reasoning stating that a reasoning progression proceeds from particulars. In short, when we use induction, we observe a number of specific instances and from them infer a general principle or concept. It suggests that a teacher teaches grammar starting with presenting some examples of sentences. In this sense, learners understand grammatical rules from the examples.

Inductive approach tries to utilize the very strong reward value of bringing order, clarity and meaning to experiences. This approach involves learners participating actively in their own instruction. In addition, the approach encourages a learner to develop her/his own mentalset of strategies for dealing with tasks. In other words, this approach attempts to highlight grammatical rules implicitly in which the learners are encouraged to conclude the rules given by the teacher.


The proposed procedure was derived from the notion that in teaching grammar, teachers conventionally start explaining the rule without encouraging learners to be involved in communicative tasks both written and spoken.

For example, if the teacher would like to present continuous tense, she/he may directly explain the verb form of the tense along with examples. When this approach is used, I think that the learners will feel that the rules are separated from the communicative tasks. They may think that making mistakes in speaking or writing is tolerable as long as the messages are easily understood. This perception could hinder the learners from learning grammar intensively and applying the rule in the communicative tasks.

My view is that teachers themselves should re-design and develop the materials from books, since self study grammar and grammar course books have some strengths and weaknesses. By doing this, teachers are required to assess the strengths and weaknesses of the materials themselves and to design innovatively evaluated materials.

To sum up, the proposed procedure trains the students in the rule related to word, phrase, clause and sentence problems in which the target sentence pattern is well introduced to the students through exercises from form to function. In this case, understanding meaning and using the rule automatically are of great concern.


We would like to propose a procedure for teaching grammar in which the activities involve five steps:

Building up students knowledge of the rule. Eliciting functions of the rule or rule elicitation.

Familiarising students with the rule in use through exercises or rule practice.

Checking students comprehension or rule activation. Expanding students knowledge or rule enrichment.



The procedure tries to encourage the students involvement in communicative tasks.

Learners are trained to be accustomed to rule discovery, which could enhance learning autonomy and self-reliance.

Learners are encouraged to be more active in the learning process, rather than being simply passive recipients of exercises.

Learners are given ample of chances to apply their cognitive thinking.

The procedure respects the intelligence and maturity of many adult learners in particular and acknowledges the role of cognitive processes in language acquisition.

Although the proposed procedure offers some advantages, I should acknowledge its disadvantages. Among them are

The procedure may frustrate learners who would prefer simply to be told the rule.

The procedure is an intense activity that is time and energy consuming.

The procedure places an emphasis on teachers in designing data and materials.

The procedure requires the teacher to have extensive knowledge of the grammatical rule being taught.


The ultimate goal of teaching grammar is to provide the students with knowledge of the way language is constructed so that when they listen, speak, read and write, they have no trouble applying the language that they are learning. Language teachers are, therefore, challenged to use creative and innovative attempts to teach grammar so that such a goal can successfully be achieved. In other words, whatever exercises are given, the most crucial thing is that the teacher provides students with an opportunity to produce the grammatical item making use of syntactically and semantically correct examples of sentences comprised of appropriate and relevant vocabulary.


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