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 Basic Points of English Grammar for TEFL teachers (Part 1)

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John V Asia Teacher
John V Asia Teacher
John V Asia Teacher

PostSubject: Basic Points of English Grammar for TEFL teachers (Part 1)   13.03.17 14:46

TEFL Lesson Plans
An increasing number of native English-speaking people are emigrating to seek work elsewhere. As English is the business language of the world, employment as a TEFL (Teaching English as a foreign language) teacher is the main option. English Grammar' (Part 1) is one in a short series of TEFL lesson planning and explanation designed to help new TEFL teachers, or those wanting an explanation other than from standard textbooks and contains examples and exercises, plus tips.

Nouns, Adjectives and Verbs

Nouns are people, places or things. Whatever you can see we call a noun. Your computer is a noun and the chair you are sitting on is a noun.
Adjectives are describing words. They explain what we can see. What colour is your computer and is your chair big, or small?
Verbs are doing words, they tell us what the noun (what you can see) is doing, or what we can do with it.  What is your computer or chair doing, or what can you do with them?

*Tip* - to find out whether a word is a noun, adjective, or verb, use the following order.
Can we see it? Chair - it’s a noun
If we can’t see it, can we do it? Stand - it’s a verb
If we can’t see it, or do it, black - it’s an adjective


Example 1 - What is a noun, adjective and verb

Nouns tell us what you can see -  man and chair
Adjectives describe what you can see - tall and black  
Verbs tell us what the noun is doing - typing and standing
The first picture shows a tall (adjective) man (noun) typing (verb)
The second picture shows a black (adjective) chair (noun) standing (verb)

When we speak, we usually describe what we can see (adjective), followed by what we can see (noun) and finally, what it's doing (verb): The green (adjective) door (noun) is closed (verb).

*Tip* - all colours are adjectives; we can’t see colours, they describe the noun that we can see. Green grass and blue sky.

When we talk about the future, or begin to do something; type or stand (verbs - doing words), we always add the letters 'ing' onto the end of the verb word. The man can type – later, when he begins to do it he is typing. A chair stands – what is it doing? It is standing.

Example 2 - Noun, adjective and verb structure

Look at the following words. The words noun, adjective and verb we often shorten to: n, adj and v.
        car     I     black      a     drive     big

Now let’s use nouns, adjectives and verbs to make sense of these words
            I (n)             drive (v)             a (singular, one)                 big (adj)             black (adj)               car (n)

I, who are we talking about. Can see me? I’m a noun
drive, what I do. When I begin to do it I’m driving. It's a verb
a, how many things are we talking about? One
big and black, what my car looks like, they’re adjectives
car, what are we talking about? You can see a car, it’s a noun

Example 3 – Describe it and what is it doing?

Think of a noun, something you can see, a television.
Pretend you are telling me about it on your mobile ‘phone. How would you describe it? It’s big, heavy, expensive and black? They are all describing words, adjectives that describe the television.
A verb tells us what the noun, the television can do, or what it is doing. Does the television stand, is the television standing? Do you watch it, or are you watching it? Does it work and when you turn it on, is it working? What can you do with it, what does it do, or what is it doing? They are called verbs.


Exercise 1 - Fill in the correct adjective, noun and verb 
The answers to the exercises are at the end of the article

The wooden chair is standing. The adjective (describing word) is _____ the noun (what we can see is _____ and the verb (doing word) is _____

My small shoe is hurting. The adjective (describing word) is ______ the noun (what we can see) is _____ and the verb (doing word) is _____

Exercise 2 – Describing rice

The word 'rice' is a noun because we can see it. How would we describe the word rice to someone who has never seen rice? What does it look like? As rice doesn’t do anything, what can we do with it?

Rice is _____ (adjective) and we eat (verb) it. When we begin to eat, we are eating.

Which of the following three adjectives (describing words) tell us what rice looks like?
Heavy, small, fast, white, pink, square, delicious _____ _____ _____
Remember, can you see it? Can you do it? If not, the word is an adjective.

Exercise 3 - What is it?

What can we see (noun), what does it look like (adjective) and what is it doing (verb).

Noun ____ Adjective ____ Verb ____ Noun ____ Adjective ____ Verb ____

Exercise 4 – Multichoice: Noun, adjective or verb

Put the following words under the correct heading of noun, adjective, or verb
Exercise answers

Exercise 1 - Fill in the correct adjective, noun and verb
Wooden (adjective), chair (noun), standing (verb)
Small (adjective), shoe (noun), hurting (verb)

Exercise 2 – Describing rice
Rice is: (Any of these words) Delicious, small, white, tiny, soft
Adjectives - What rice looks like: small, white, delicious

Exercise 3 - What is it?
(Noun) table, (adjective) any of the following - yellow, brown, big, large, small, wooden (verb) standing
(Noun) car, (adjective) any of the following - big, small, slow, fast, white, expensive (verb) standing or stationary

Exercise 4 – Multichoice: Noun, adjective or verb
(Noun) car, dog, tree, ball, house
(Adjective) big, heavy, round, cold, green
(Verb) make, swim, run, study, jump

Further reading: TEFL lesson plans
                         TEFL lesson plans: Singular and plural, quantifiers

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