Studies lexical material of English Essay

Surveies lexical stuff of English


Chapter I. How is Vocabulary learned?

1.1 How of import is vocabulary

1.2 How are words selected

1.3 Conveying the significance

Chapter II. How to show vocabulary

2.1 Showing vocabulary

2.2 How to exemplify significance

2.3 How to explicate significance

Chapter III. How to set words to work

3.1 Decision – devising undertakings

3.1.1 Identifying words

3.1.2 Choosing undertakings

3.1.3 Matching undertaking

3.1.4 Screening activities

3.1.5 Ranking and sequencing

3.2 Games

Chapter IV. Teaching word parts word balls

4.1 Teaching word formation and word combination

4.2 A lexical attack

4.3 Teaching lexical balls

4.4 Teaching phrasal verbs

4.5 Teaching parlances



Chapter I
How is Vocabulary learned?

1.1 How of import is vocabulary

Teaching English vocabulary is an of import country worthy of attempt and probe. Recently methodologists and linguists emphasize and recommend learning vocabulary because of its importance in linguistic communication instruction. Vocabulary is needed for showing significance and in utilizing the receptive ( listening and reading ) and the productive ( talking and composing ) accomplishments. “ If linguistic communication constructions make up the skeleton of linguistic communication, so it is vocabulary that provides the critical variety meats and the flesh ” ( Harmer )

Vocabulary is non a course of study, i.e. , a list of words that instructors prepare for their scholars to memorise and larn by bosom. Memorizing may be good and utile as a impermanent technique for trials, but non for larning a foreign linguistic communication. Language pupils need to larn vocabulary of the mark linguistic communication in another manner. If we are truly to learn pupils what words mean and how they are used, we need to demo them being used together in context. Wordss do non merely be on their ain ; they live together and they depend upon each other. Therefore, learning vocabulary right is a really of import component in linguistic communication acquisition. Correct vocabulary direction involves vocabulary choice, word cognition and techniques.

1.2 How are words selected

In the yesteryear, instructors used to choose and present vocabulary from concrete to abstract. Wordss like ‘door ‘ , ‘window ‘ , ‘desk ‘ , etc. , which are concrete, used to be taught at beginning degrees. However, words like ‘honesty ‘ , ‘beauty ‘ etc. , which are abstract words, used to be taught at advanced levelsbecause they are non “ physically represented ” in the learning/teaching environment and are really hard to explicate.

Nowadays methodologists and linguists suggest that instructors can make up one’s mind and choose the words to be taught on the footing of how often they are used by talkers of the linguistic communication. That is, the most normally used words should be taught foremost ( Harmer ) .

We can acquire information about which words will be most utile for scholars of English by looking at frequence counts of vocabulary. Normally a vocabulary count is done by doing a list of the words in a peculiar text or group of texts and numbering how frequently and where they occur. Some of the more recent counts have used computing machines to name the words and number their frequence ( Nation ) .

Besides that, instructors can make up one’s mind which words are utile and should be taught to their scholars on the footing of semantics. This means, that the word is more utile if it covers more things than if it merely has one really specific significance. For illustration, the word ‘book ‘ , which is taught at beginning degrees, has wider use than the words ‘notebook ‘ , ‘textbook ‘ , etc. Furthermore, Nation says that frequence and coverage are non plenty to be used when instructors select and fix a word list for scholars of English. So he suggests other standards, such as linguistic communication demands, handiness and acquaintance, regularity and easiness of larning or larning load.

Teachers can assist their scholars enrich and increase their vocabulary. They can besides assist the scholars to construct a new shop of words to choose from when they want to show themselves. If any scholar can manage grammar right, that does non intend that he can show himself fluently unless he has a shop of words to choose from. Therefore, instructors are a really of import factor in selecting and learning English vocabulary, and they have to plan vocabulary course of study harmonizing to their scholars ‘ demands. As a consequence, & # 8220 ; instructors vocabulary work can be directed toward utile words and can give scholars pattern in utile accomplishments ” .

The choice of words which are to be taught to the pupils is a really of import process in the linguistic communication larning procedure. However, the wordselection procedure does n’t intend that the pupils will be fluid in showing themselves in English upon larning that list, i.e. , what pupils need to cognize sing vocabulary is the word significance, the word usage, the word formation and the word grammar.

1.3 Conveying the significance

When conveying the significance to the pupils, instructors should learn their pupils that a word may hold more than one significance when used in significance, different contexts. For illustration, the word “ book ” has at least twelve different significances when used in context. It has eight significances as a noun, two significances as a verb and three different significances when used with prepositions as phrasal verbs. One may state “ I booked my ticket three yearss ago ” ; another “ I booked him for rushing ” and so on ( Harmer ) .Teachers should do the instruction larning vocabulary procedure clear and easy for their pupils when conveying any significance ; otherwise the pupil may experience world-weary and go fed up with learning vocabulary.

The significance of words can be communicated in many different ways. State suggests that instructors can convey intending to their pupils by presentation or images ( utilizing an object, utilizing a cut out figure, utilizing gesture, executing and action, exposure, blackboard drawings or diagrams and images from books ) and by verbal account ( analytical definition, seting the new word in a shaping context, and interpreting into another linguistic communication ) . Besides that, instructors should affect their pupils in detecting the words ‘ significances by themselves and allow them do attempts to understand words ‘ significances. When the pupils are involved in detecting significance, they will ne’er bury those significances and they will be able to show themselves fluently.

When a individual word has assorted significances, the instructor should make up one’s mind which significances are to be taught foremost, i.e. , the instructor must make up one’s mind which significances occur most often and which meanings the scholars need most. As a consequence, the pupils will be motivated, and bit by bit they will construct their ain shop of words which will be a footing for communicating at any clip.

Teaching vocabulary is non merely conveying the significance to the pupils and inquiring them to larn those words by bosom. If instructors believe that the words are deserving explicating and acquisition, so it is of import that they should make this expeditiously. Teachers should utilize different techniques and activities in learning English vocabulary to actuate the scholars, enrich their vocabulary and enable them to talk English decently.

Chapter II
How to show vocabulary

2.1 Showing vocabulary

We looked at possible beginnings of vocabulary input, including vocabulary books, readers, lexicons and principals. A motivated and autonomous scholar might be able to get a big vocabulary merely by utilizing these resources. However, many scholars sign up for linguistic communication classs in the outlook that, at least some of the clip, they will be presented with linguistic communication, instead than holding to travel out and happen it for themselves. By presentation, we mean those pre-planned lesson phases in which scholars are taught pre-selected vocabulary points. Of class, incidental vocabulary instruction can happen at other times of the lesson, as when a text or a treatment throws up unfamiliar vocabulary. In this chapter, nevertheless, we will be chiefly concerned with ways vocabulary can be officially presented in the schoolroom. But many of the issues are relevant to the informal instruction of vocabulary as good.

At the really least scholars need to larn both the significance and the signifier of a new word. We shall cover with each of these constituents in bend. But it ‘s deserving indicating out that both these facets of a word should be presented in close concurrence in order to guarantee a tight meaning-and-form tantrum. The greater the spread between the presentation of a word ‘s signifier and its significance, the less likely that the scholar will do a mental connexion between the two.

Let ‘s state the instructor has decided to learn a related set of words – for illustration, points of vesture: shirt, pants, jacket, socks, frock, denims. The instructor has a figure of options available. First, there is the inquiry of how many words to show. This will depend on the undermentioned factors:

– the degree of the scholars ( whether novices, intermediate, or advanced ) ;

– the scholars ‘ likely acquaintance with the words ( scholars may hold met the words before even though they are non portion of their active vocabulary ) ;

– the trouble of the points – whether, for illustration, they express abstract significances.

See how you would show each of the undermentioned six sets of words. What do you believe would be the most appropriate agencies of showing them? ( E.g. ocular AIDSs, a state of affairs, existent objects, etc. )

2.2 How to exemplify significance

An option to interlingual rendition & # 8211 ; and an obvious pick if showing a set of concrete objects such as apparels points & # 8211 ; is to somehow illustrate or show them. This can be done either by utilizing existent objects ( called realia ) or pictures or mummer. The usage of realia, images and presentation was a shaping technique of the Direct Method. The Direct Method, in rejecting the usage of interlingual rendition, developed as a reaction to such extremely rational attacks to linguistic communication larning as Grammar-Translation. Here, for illustration, is advice for instructors from a popular Direct Method class of the fortiess:


The usual process is as follows.

The instructor first selects a figure of objects, in batches of say from 10 to 20. [ … ] The objects may be:

( a ) those that are normally found in the topographic point where the lesson is given, e.g. door, window, knife, lucifer, book ; or parts of the organic structure or articles of vesture ;

( B ) those collected specially for the intents of the lesson, e.g. a stick, a rock, a nail, a piece of wire, a piece of threading etc ;

( degree Celsius ) those represented by images, such as those printed on image cards or wall charts, or by unsmooth drawings on the chalkboard.

The instructor shows or points to each object in bend and names it. He says the name clearly ( but of course ) three or four times. [ … ] When the students have had sufficient chance to hear the words and sentences ( and to hold on their significance ) they are called upon to state them. In the first case they may reiterate them after the instructor…

( from Palmer H, The Teaching of Oral English, Longman )

Ocular AIDSs take many signifiers: flash cards ( published and home-made ) , wall charts, transparences projected on to the board or wall utilizing the overhead projector, and board drawings. Many instructors collect their ain sets of flash cards from magazines, calendars, etc. Particularly utile are images of points belonging to the undermentioned sets: nutrient and drink, vesture, house insides and furniture, landscapes/exteriors, signifiers of conveyance plus a broad choice of images of people, sub-divided into sets such as occupations, nationalities, athleticss, activities, and visual aspect ( tall, strong, sad, healthy, old, etc ) .

2.3 How to explicate significance

Of class, trust on existent objects, illustration, or presentation, is limited. It is one thing to mimic a poulet, but rather another to physically stand for the significance of a word like intuition or go or trustworthy. Besides, words often come up by the way, words for which the instructor wo n’t hold ocular AIDSs or realia at manus. An alternate manner of conveying the significance of a new word is merely to utilize words & # 8211 ; other words. This is the rule behind dictionary definitions. Non-visual, verbal agencies of clear uping intending include:

– supplying an illustration state of affairs ;

– giving several illustration sentences ;

– giving equivalent word, opposite word, or ace ordinate footings ;

– giving a full definition.

All of the above processs can be used in concurrence, and besides in combination with ocular agencies such as board drawings or mummer. Although a verbal account may take a little longer than utilizing interlingual rendition, or visuals or mummer, the advantages are that the scholars are acquiring excess & # 8220 ; free & # 8221 ; listening pattern, and, by being made to work a small harder to acquire to the significance of a word, they may, be more cognitively engaged.

Chapter III
How to set words to work

3.1 Decision – devising undertakings

There are many different sorts of undertakings that instructors can put scholars in order to assist travel words into long-run memory. Some of these undertakings will necessitate more encephalon work than others. That is to state, they will be more cognitively demanding. Undertakings in which scholars make determinations about words can be divided into the undermentioned types, approximately arranged in an order from least cognitively demanding to most demanding:

& # 8226 ; placing

& # 8226 ; choosing

& # 8226 ; fiting

& # 8226 ; screening

& # 8226 ; ranking and sequencing

The more of these undertaking types that can be performed on a set of words the better. In other words, an designation undertaking could be followed by a duplicate undertaking, which in bend could be followed by a superior undertaking.

3.1.1 Identifying words

Identifying words merely means happening them where they may otherwise be & # 8220 ; hidden & # 8221 ; , such as in texts.

Here, for illustration, are some designation undertakings associating to the text Fear of Flying. Give the scholars the text and inquire them to:

& # 8226 ; Count the figure of times plane ( s ) and train ( s ) occur in the text.

& # 8226 ; Find four words connected with, winging in the text.

& # 8226 ; Find five phrasal verbs in the text.

& # 8226 ; Find eight comparative adjectives in the text.

& # 8226 ; Underline all the words stoping in -ing in the text.

Ask them to read the text, so turn it over, and so inquire:

& # 8226 ; & # 8220 ; Did the followers words occur in the text? & # 8221 ;

busy crowded fast unsafe uncomfortable dirty convenient inconvenient noisy

& # 8226 ; & # 8220 ; Now check the text to see if you were right. & # 8221 ;

Designation is besides the procedure scholars apply in undertakings in which they have to unscramble anagrams ( such as utis, snaje, eti & # 8212 ; for suit, denims, tie ) , or when they have to seek for words in a ‘word soup ‘ , such as the followers ( besides from Language in Use ) :

1 What are these apparels in English? The replies are all in the word square.

3.1.2 Choosing undertakings

Choosing undertakings are cognitively more complex than designation undertakings, since they involve both recognizing words and doing picks amongst them. This may take the signifier of taking the & # 8220 ; odd one out & # 8221 ; , as in this undertaking ( once more, based on the lexical set of apparels ) .

Choose the uneven one out in each group






T-shirt etc.










Note that with this sort of activity, there is no & # 8220 ; righ & # 8221 ; answer needfully. What is of import is that scholars are able to warrant their pick, whatever their reply. It is the cognitive work that counts & # 8211 ; non acquiring the right reply.

Here is another open-ended choice undertaking, with a individualized component

1. Work in braces. Choose five words to depict yourself. Use a dictionary if necessary.

careful interesting clever cold confident tantrum amusing inventive intelligent sort lazy nervous

optimistic patent pessimistic

polite quiet unagitated rude sad sensitive nice serious tidy thoughtful

Think of other words you can


honest, friendly…

Discuss your pick of words with your spouse.

I think I ‘m normally optimistic.

And I ‘m ever polite!

Does he/she hold with you?

2.Think of three people you admire really much. They can be politicians, instrumentalists, athleticss personalities etc. or people you know personally. Choose the individual you admire most and believe of three adjectives to depict this individual.

Then take the 2nd and 3rd individual you admire and think of three more adjectives for each individual to explicate why.

from Greenall S, Reward Pre-Intermediate, Macmillan Heinemann

3.1.3 Matching undertaking

A duplicate undertaking involves foremost recognising words and so partner offing them with & # 8211 ; for illustration & # 8211 ; a ocular representation, a interlingual rendition, a equivalent word, an opposite word, a definition, or a collocate. As an illustration of this last type, here is a verb-noun matching undertaking.

Here is a vocabulary activity from a novices ‘ class ( Mohamed S and Acklam R, The Beginners ‘ Choice, Longman ) , dwelling of two phases. Devise at least three farther phases which would necessitate scholars to ‘put the words to work ‘ & # 8211 ; both receptively and fruitfully.

Expression at the image below and figure the parts of the organic structure.

hair 2. caput… pes… nose… oculus… leg… articulatio genus… finger… oral cavity… manus toe… shoulder… face… arm… back ear… tummy…

3.1.4 Screening activities

Screening activities require scholars to screen words into different classs. The classs can either be given, or guessed. Here is an illustration of the former ( from Thornbury S, Highlight Pre-Intermediate, Heinemann ) .

Word field: features

Put these adjectives into two groups & # 8211 ; positive and negative













Here is an activity in which scholars ( at a reasonably advanced degree ) decide the classs themselves:

Put these words into four groups of three words each. Then, think of a rubric for each group.

end cyberspace piece nine racket shoot board viridity

tribunal hole pitch referee cheque service tee move

Now, can you add excess words to each group?

Ranking and sequencing

Ranking and sequencing activities require scholars to set the words intosome sort of order. This may affect set uping the words on a Cline: for illustration, adverbs of frequence { ever, sometimes, ne’er, on occasion, frequently, etc ) . Or scholars may be asked to rank points harmonizing to penchant:

Imagine you have merely moved into a wholly empty level. You can afford to purchase one piece of furniture a hebdomad. Put the undermentioned points in the order in which you would purchase them:

electric refrigerator bed desk dining table couch

closet chair dishwasher bookcase cooker

rinsing machine thorax of shortss

Now, compare your list with another pupil and explicate your order. If you were sharing the level together, would you hold? If non, do a new list that you both agree about.

Any sequence of activities & # 8211 ; from get downing a auto to purchasing a place & # 8211 ; lends itself to the same intervention. Here, for illustration, is a undertaking that focuses on the linguistic communication of air travel ( from Garton-Sprenger J and Greenall S, Flying Colours 2, Heinemann ) :

Work in braces. Think about what people do when they travel by plane. Put the actions below in the right column.

before the flight after the flight

cheque in

go forth the plane


unfasten your seat belt

travel into the going sofa

travel to the going gate

fix your seat belt

travel through passport control

Leave the plane

cheque in

roll up your luggage

travel through passport control

listen to the safety instructions

travel through imposts

board the plane

travel into the reachings hall

Number the actions in the order people do them.

3.2 Games

While the tide of this chapter is & # 8220 ; How to set words to work & # 8221 ; , it would be incorrect to propose that vocabulary acquisition has to be all work and no drama. Language drama, including word games, has a long history. Children of all civilizations seem to bask games of the & # 8220 ; I spy… & # 8221 ; or & # 8220 ; Hangman & # 8221 ; type, and there is a long tradition of grownup word games, a figure of which have been adapted for telecasting. Most first-language word games transfer comfortably to the second-language schoolroom.

Word bang: Students stand or sit in a circle, and, following the instructor ‘s lead, maintain a four-beat beat, clapping their custodies on their thighs three times ( one-two-three… ) and so both custodies together ( four! ) . The game should get down easy, but the gait of the applause can bit by bit increase. The thought is to take bends, clockwise, to shout out a different word from a pre-selected lexical set ( for illustration, fruit and veggies ) on every 4th round. Players who either reiterate a word already used, or interrupt the beat & # 8211 ; or state nil & # 8211 ; are & # 8220 ; out & # 8221 ; and the game resumes without them, until merely one participant is left. The instructor can alter the lexical set by shouting out the name of a new set at strategic points: Furniture! Nationalities! Jobs! etc.

Classs: Learners work in braces or little groups. On a piece of paper, they draw up a figure of columns, harmonizing to a theoretical account on the board, each column labelled with the name of a lexical set: e.g. fruit, conveyance, apparels, animate beings, athleticss. The instructor calls out a missive of the alphabet ( e.g. B! ) , and to a clip bound ( e.g. three proceedingss ) , pupils write down every bit many words as they can get downing with that missive in the separate columns { banana, berry ; coach ; bikini, blouse ; bear, chiropteran ; baseball, hoops… ) . The group with the most ( correct ) words wins.

Zeros and crosses: Draw two zeros and crosses grids on the board:

One is clean. In the other each square is labelled with a class, or with nine different phrasal verb atoms { up, on, away, in, back, etc ) , or nine different affixes { un- , non- , -less, -tion, etc ) . Fix a figure of inquiries associating to each class. For illustration ( if the category is monolingual ) : How do you state & # 8220 ; tamburo & # 8221 ; in English? Or, What is the antonym of & # 8220 ; shy & # 8221 ; ? Divide the category into two squads: zeros and crosses. The object is to take bends taking a class and replying a inquiry in this class right so as to gain the right to put their squad ‘s symbol in the corresponding place in the clean grid. The winning squad is the first to make a line of three ( zeros or crosses ) , either vertically, horizontally, or diagonally.

Coffeepot: This is a guessing game. One scholar replies yes/no inquiries from the remainder of the category ( or group ) about a verb that she has thought of, or that the instructor has whispered to her. In the inquiries the word coffeepot is used in topographic point of the enigma verb. So, for illustration, pupils might inquire Do you coffeepot indoors or out-of-doorss? Is coffee potting easy or hard? Can you coffeepot with your custodies? etc. If the verb that the pupil has selected is yawn the replies would be: Both indoors and out-of-doorss ; It ‘s easy ; No, you ca n’t, but you might utilize your custodies… To do the game easier a list of, say, 20 verbs can be put on the board and the individual who is ‘it ‘ chooses one of them. This can besides be played in braces.

Back to board: This is another thinking game, but this clip the pupil who is ‘it ‘ has to think a word by inquiring the remainder of the category inquiries. The pupil sits confronting the category, back to the board ; the instructor writes a late studied word or phrase or parlance on the board, out of sight of the pupil. The pupil asks different pupils yes/no or either/or inquiries in order to think the word. For illustration: Helga, is it a verb or a noun? ( A verb. ) Dittmer, is it an action? ( No. ) Karl-Heinz, is it something you do with your head? ( Yes. ) … etc. To do the game easier, the words chosen can be limited in some manner & # 8211 ; e.g. all phrasal verbs ; all character adjectives, and so on.

Chapter IV
. Teaching word parts word balls

4.1 Teaching word formation and word combination

We looked at some of the rules of word formation in English. We noted that words can be formed by the add-on of prefixes and postfixs & # 8211 ; a procedure called affixation. ( The word affixation is itself an illustration of the consequence of adding affixes to the root hole. ) We besides saw how, by intensifying, two or more words can fall in up to do one. Frankincense: black + board = chalkboard. Or, new words can be created by a procedure called transition, when a word that in one context is one portion of address ( such as a noun ) , in another context can be enlisted to function a different map ( such as a verb ) . Hence, you may hold heard the comparatively recent term to board as in The instructor boarded the new words and the pupils wrote them down.

Then once more words can constellate ( but non fall in up ) to organize multi-word units & # 8211 ; slackly called balls & # 8211 ; that behave as if they were individual words. For illustration, aboard black, the Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English lists: black and white, black and bluish, black sheep, in the black and to black out. ( This last is an illustration of a phrasal verb. ) Many balls have an idiomatic significance & # 8211 ; that is to state the significance of the ball as a whole is non straight inferrable from the single words: He ‘s the black sheep of the household ; you ‘ve introduced a ruddy herring, etc.

The manner spots of words combine, and the manner words themselves can be combined, is a changeless beginning of trouble for scholars. Mistakes of the undermentioned types are common:

Affixation mistakes

There are uncountless ways to convey felicity to my life thanks to the cyberspace.

After completing the paragraph and reading it once more, I felt unsatisfy. I think that my existent and lone knowledgements are in the vocabulary.

Intensifying mistakes

In London I took a two floor coach and of class crossed the metropolis in the highest floor.

I saw my Canis familiaris died in a box ‘s places.

Mistakes of multi-word units

We have besides a coachs web.

Sometimes Canis familiaris is n’t the best adult male ‘s friend.

Collocation mistakes

I do n’t wish when I do errors.

Some instructors are rigorous they put us a batch of prep and tests.

Phrasal verb mistakes

She used to travel to school with her amah, and a amah was picking up her from school.

There are some yearss that the better it ‘s stay in bed and do n’t acquire up you.

Idiom mistakes

I have no more money. So most of clip I merely watch stores ‘ window.

I do n’t wish to blow my ain horn, but my grammar cognition and my vocabulary are rather good.

In reacting to these sorts of jobs, there are two possible attacks.

You can either

– Teach regulations, or

– unmasking scholars to tonss of right illustrations

A rule-based attack starts by insulating and foregrounding any relevant forms or regularities. Take word formation, for illustration. In a rule-based attack, words can be grouped and presented harmonizing to the mode of formation ( affixation, intensifying, transition, etc ) . Within these classs finer differentiations can be made. So, of the words formed by affixation we can choose those formed by the add-on of prefixes, and this group can be narrowed down further to those that have a negative significance. The manner these words are formed can so be described in general footings in the signifier of a regulation & # 8211 ; or ‘rule of pollex ‘ . Here is an illustration of such an expressed regulation statement ( from Gude K and Duckworth M, Proficiency Masterclass, OUP ) :

B Negative prefixes. The prefixes mis- , dis- , ig- , and un- can all be used to give a word a instead negative significance. The prefix may assist you to think the significance of the word.

mis- = ‘wrongly, severely ‘ or ‘not done ‘ ( mismanage )

dis- = ‘away from, the antonym of, deficiency of ‘ ( antipathy )

ig- = ‘not, missing in ‘ ( ignorant )

un- = ‘not, deficiency of, the antonym, reversal or remotion of ‘ ( undo )

Here is some advice to assist you take the right prefix.

dis- can be used to organize verbs, eg dissatisfy, adjectives, eg dishonest ; and nouns, eg disablement.

The prefix ig- appears merely before the missive N.

Here, on the other manus, is a tabular array which suggests & # 8211 ; but does n’t explicitly province & # 8211 ; a regulation about

noun and verb terminations:

1 Now you can beef up the thin green line.

Strengthen is a verb which is formed from the adjectival strong. Work in braces and finish this tabular array.

Adjective Noun Verb

from Naunton J, Think First Certificate, Longman

A similar attack is used with word collocations, wherever a general inclination can be identified. Here, for illustration, is a coursebook infusion that focuses on the difference between brand and make combinations:


Make or make?

1 Read the undermentioned sentences carefully.

Last dark I tried to make my prep. However, I kept doing errors because the adult male upstairs was making his exercisings and doing a noise.

Make normally means to make, convey into being, or bring forth a consequence.

Do normally means to execute an action. However, there are exclusions to this ‘rule ‘ , as you will see in Exercise 3.

from Bell J and Gower R, Intermediate Matters, Longman

One job with a rule-based attack is that the range of the regulation is non ever clear. How many, and which, adjectives can be turned into verbs by the add-on of -en, for illustration? Sweet and fresh & # 8212 ; yes, but wet and dry? There is the added job of the deficiency of one-to-one lucifer between signifiers and classs. For illustration, in- and un- both express negation ( unsure, inactive ) , but in- can besides be used with the significance of in, or within ( as in inclusive ) . And when do we utilize in- , as opposed to un- or non- or dis- , to convey negation? How, for illustration, does the scholar know whether to utilize unsated, disgruntled, insatisfied or nonsatisfied?

Other pattern-highlighting techniques involve the usage of texts and include the followers:

– scholars are given a text and asked to seek for and underline all compound nouns, negative prefixes, multi-word units, etc.

– scholars find words in a text that are derivations. For illustration, ‘Find three words in the text that are derived from sense… ‘

– scholars classify these derivations harmonizing to which portion of address they are

– scholars categorise underlined words in a text harmonizing to a common affix, or harmonizing to the word formation rule they exemplify ( intensifying, transition, etc. )

The more of these sorts of operations the scholar does the better, since ( as we saw in the last chapter ) the more determinations the scholar makes about a word the greater the deepness of processing.

A great advantage of working from texts is that the words that are to be focused on are already in context, hence their significances may be clearer than if presented as stray words in a list. Besides, and possibly more significantly, the shared context will convey words together that are normally associated. In the undermentioned text, for illustration, there are a figure of words associated with clip, offense and the jurisprudence.

An attack to concentrating on these characteristics might be:

& # 8226 ; Ask pupils to read the text and to reply comprehension inquiries to estimate degree of understanding. For illustration:

1 The maximal clip you can be detained without charge is:

a 24 hours b 36 hours c 60 hours

2 You can be detained for 36 hours merely if:

a. a a serious arrestable offense has been committed,

b. b a magistrate gives permission,

c. degree Celsius further inquiring is necessary.

& # 8226 ; Ask scholars ( working together and utilizing lexicons ) to underscore all words associating to legal procedures, and to categorize these harmonizing to a ) people, B ) processes.

& # 8226 ; Ask them to utilize lexicons to do verbs for these nouns: bound, detainment, charge, offense, oppugning, suspect, and to do nouns of these verbs: apprehension, detain, commit, extend, secure, preserve. Which of the verb signifiers can take -able to organize an adjective?

& # 8226 ; Ask them to circle all clip looks with Numberss and note the prepositions used in each instance.

& # 8226 ; Ask scholars to place the verbs that fill these slots: ______a individual

without charge ; _________an offense ; __________a surmise in detention ;

_______a suspect before a magistrate ; ___________a clip bound.

& # 8226 ; Ask scholars to rewrite the transition in ‘plain English ‘ , e.g. as if they were explicating it to a friend. Alternatively, inquire them to interpret it into their ain linguistic communication.

& # 8226 ; Learners so use the rewritten ( or translated ) transition as a footing for retracing the original text. They so compare the Reconstruction with the original.

& # 8226 ; A follow-up activity might be to inquire scholars to research and summarize this facet of the legal system in their ain state ( esteeming, of class, their cultural sensitivenesss ) .

Note that this text, although short, is hard and the undertakings would be accomplishable merely by rather advanced scholars. However, the same undertakings could be adapted to much easier texts, and used at lower degrees.

To summarize, so: the instruction of the grammar of word formation and word combination can be approached from two waies: early direction in the regulations, or the acquisition of a measure of vocabulary points from which these regulations are easy distilled. We have looked at the instance for a midway place that recognises the demand for early exposure but at the same clip accepts that consciousness-raising through focussed attending can rush up the procedure of ‘getting a feel for it ‘ . Plentiful exposure plus consciousness- elevation is a cardinal rule underlying what has come to be known as a lexical attack.

4.2 A lexical attack

A lexical attack to linguistic communication learning foregrounds vocabulary acquisition, both in the signifier of single, high frequence words, and in the signifier of word combinations ( or balls ) . The drift for a lexical attack to linguistic communication learning derives from the undermentioned rules:

& # 8226 ; a course of study should be organised around significances

& # 8226 ; the most frequent words encode the most frequent significances and

& # 8226 ; words typically co-occur with other words

& # 8226 ; these accompaniments ( or balls ) are an assistance to fluency

A course of study organised around significances instead than signifiers ( such as grammar constructions ) is called a semantic course of study. A figure of theoreticians have suggested that a course of study of significances & # 8211 ; particularly those significances that scholars are likely to necessitate to show & # 8211 ; would be more utile than a course of study of constructions. For illustration, most scholars will at some clip need to show such classs of significance ( or impressions ) as ownership or frequence or sorrow or mode. Simply learning scholars a assortment of constructions, such as the present simple or the 2nd conditional, is no warrant that their communicative demands will be met. The present simple, for illustration, supports a broad scope of significances ( present wont, future path, past narration, etc ) , some of which may be less utile than others. Would n’t it be better to get down with the more utile significances themselves, instead than the construction?

A semantic course of study & # 8211 ; i.e. one based around significances & # 8211 ; is likely to hold a strong lexical focal point. The undermentioned sentences, for illustration, all involve the present simple, but they express different impressions. These fanciful significances are signalled by certain cardinal words ( underlined ) :

Does this towel belong to you? ( ownership )

How frequently do you travel to London? ( frequence )

I wish I ‘d done Gallic, ( sorrow )

Exercise is the best manner of losing weight, ( mode )

Wordss like belong, frequently, wish and manner carry the king of beasts ‘s portion of the significance in these sentences: the grammar is mostly embroidering. A lexical attack argues that significance is encoded chiefly in words. This position motivated two coursebook authors, Dave and Jane Willis, to suggest that a lexical course of study might be the best manner of organizing a class. The Willises believed that a course of study based around the most frequent words in the linguistic communication would cover the most frequent significances in the linguistic communication. Consequently, they based their novices ‘ class around the 700 most frequent words in English. They used principal informations ( i.e. computing machine Bankss of of course happening text & # 8211 ; see page 68 ) to happen out how these words ‘behaved ‘ & # 8211 ; that is, the sorts of words and constructions that were associated with these high frequence words.

For illustration, an highly common word in English is manner. Harmonizing to COBUILD principal informations, it is in fact the 3rd most common noun in English ( after clip and people ) . An analysis of principal informations shows that manner is used to show a assortment of significances:

1 method or agencies

2 mode, manner, behavior

3 what happens, what is the instance

4 grade, extent, regard

5 location, motion, way, infinite

It ‘s a utile manner of raising gross. The cheapest manner is to engage a new wave.

He smiles in a superior manner. Play soccer Jack Charlton ‘s manner.

That ‘s the manner it goes.

We were so pleased with the manner

things were traveling.

She ‘s really sort and Sweet in tonss of


In no manner am I a politically effectual individual.

A adult male asked me the manner to St Paul ‘s. Get out of the manner.

( after Willis D, The Lexical Syllabus, Collins )

Using principal informations, they so studied what sorts of grammatical constructions manner was typically found with & # 8211 ; i.e. its syntactic environment. For illustration, the first usage of manner in the tabular array above ( intending ‘method or agencies ‘ ) is normally found in association with this form:

manner + of + -ing a utile manner of raising gross the different ways of cooking fish

The following measure was to invent learning stuffs that illustrated these significances and forms, bearing in head that the get downing point was non the form itself, but the significance ( method, means ) , and its frequence, as evidenced in the high frequence of the word manner.

4.3 Teaching lexical balls

So far we have been speaking about lexical balls as if they were a individual Al balls undifferentiated class. But there are different types of balls and different grades of ‘chunkiness ‘ . Of the different types, the following are the most of import for learning intents:

– collocations & # 8211 ; such as widely travelled ; rich and celebrated ; do do with ; set the tabular array

– phrasal verbs & # 8211 ; such as get up ; log on ; run out of ; travel on about

– parlances, catch phrases and expressions & # 8211 ; such as snake pit for leather ; acquire cold pess ; every bit old as the hills ; mind your ain concern ; takes one to cognize one

– sentence frames & # 8211 ; such as would you mind if… ? ; the thing is… ; I ‘d… if I were you ; what truly gets me is…

– societal expression & # 8211 ; such as see you subsequently ; hold a nice twenty-four hours ; yours unfeignedly

– discourse markers & # 8211 ; such as frankly speech production ; on the other manus ; I take your point ; one time upon a clip ; to cut a long narrative short…

Within these classs further differentiations can be made in footings of stationariness and idiomaticity. Fixed balls are those that do n’t let any fluctuation: you can state over the Moon ( to intend enraptured ) but non under the Moon ( to intend non enraptured ) . Nor over the full Moon, over the Sun, etc. Many balls are semi-fixed, in that they allow some grade of fluctuation. Nice to see you is semi-fixed in that it allows lovely, good, fantastic, etc. in the nice slot, and meet, talk to, hear from, etc. in the see slot.

Some balls are crystalline in that the significance of the whole is clear from their parts, as in the instance of every bit old as the hills and to strike hard down. Others are much more idiomatic: to slop the beans and to strike hard off ( intending to steal ) . Neither fixedness nor idiomaticity are absolute values, nevertheless. Rather there is a Cline from really fixed to really free, and from really idiomatic to really crystalline. Phrasal verbs are a instance in point. Some phrasal verbs are syntactically flexible: I ‘ll convey up the paper or I ‘ll convey the paper up. Others are non: I ca n’t state the twins apart but non I ca n’t state apart the twins. Furthermore, the combination conveying up has a scope of significances, some actual ( I ‘ll convey up the paper ) , some semi-idiomatic ( Do n’t convey that topic up once more ) and some really idiomatic ( They brought their kids up to talk Italian ) .

The ability to deploy a broad scope of lexical balls both accurately and suitably is likely what most distinguishes advanced scholars from intermediate 1s. How is this capacity developed? Probably non by larning regulations & # 8211 ; as we saw with word formation, the regulations ( if there are any ) are hard to larn and use. A lexical attack is based on the belief that lexical competency comes merely from:

– frequent exposure, and

– consciousness-raising

To which we could possibly add a 3rd factor:

– memorising

Classroom linguistic communication provides plentiful chances for exposure to lexical balls. Many scholars are familiar with looks like I do n’t understand and I do n’t cognize long before they have been presented with the ‘rules ‘ of present simple negation. By increasing the stock of schoolroom phrases, instructors can work the capacity of balls to supply the natural stuff for the ulterior acquisition of grammar. Many instructors cover their schoolroom walls with utile phrases and insist on their usage whenever an appropriate chance arises. A sampling of phrases I have noticed on schoolroom walls includes:

What does X intend?

How make you state Tens?

What ‘s the ( past/plural/opposite, etc. ) of Ten?

Can you say that once more?

Can you compose it up?

How make you spell it?

I ‘m non certain.

I ‘ve forgotten.

I left it at place.

I have n’t finished yet.

It ‘s ( your/my/his ) bend.

You go foremost.

Here you are.

Pass me the…

Let ‘s hold a interruption.


The insistent nature of schoolroom activity ensures plentiful exposure to these balls. This is critical, because occasional and random exposure is deficient. Many scholars merely are n’t cognizant if a combination is one that occurs often ( and is hence a ball ) or if it is a one-off. However, there is more opportunity of meeting cases of lumping in reliable text than in text that has been ‘doctored ‘ for learning intents.

This is yet another statement for utilizing reliable texts in the schoolroom, despite the troubles frequently associated with them.

Here, for illustration, is an infusion from a reasonably well-known reliable text:

Yo, I ‘ll state you what I want what I truly truly desire,

So state me what you want what you truly truly desire

I ‘ll state you what I want what I truly truly desire,

So state me what you want what you truly truly desire

I wan na I wan na I wan na I wan na I wan na truly truly truly wan sodium

zigazig hour angle

If you want my hereafter, bury my yesteryear,

If you wan na get with me, better make it fast

Now do n’t travel blowing my cherished clip

Get your act together we could be merely all right…

If you wannabe my lover, you got ta get with my friends

Make it last everlastingly, Friendship ne’er ends

If you wannabe my lover, you have got to give,

Pickings is excessively easy but that ‘s the manner it is.

What d’ya think about that? Now you know how I feel.

Say you can manage my love, are you for existent?

I wo n’t be headlong, I ‘ll give you a attempt

If you truly tease me so I ‘ll state adieu

( from Wannabe by the Spice Girls )

Like many dad vocals, the wordss of this vocal are rich in lexical balls, including sentence frames ( I ‘ll state you what I… ; what I truly [ truly ] want [ is… ] ; If you wan na… better… ; If you truly, so I ‘ll… ) , collocations ( blowing my cherished clip ; last forever ; taking it… easy ; give you a attempt ) , and catch phrases ( better do it fast ; acquire your act together ; that ‘s the manner it is ; are you for existent? ) .

How could you utilize the above vocal text? Basically, the attack need non be really different from the attack to the legal English text on page 110. That is:

– cheque apprehension of text ( for illustration, by arousing a paraphrasis or interlingual rendition of the text )

– utilizing transcript, set undertakings concentrating on characteristics of words in combination

Examples of such undertakings might be:

& # 8226 ; Underline all contractions. Decontract them ( i.e. wan na = want to )

& # 8226 ; Find illustrations of these sentence forms in the vocal:

… Tell… what…

If you… imperative…

If you… you have got to…

If you… so I ‘ll…

& # 8226 ; Write some more illustrations, utilizing these forms, that would suit the subject of the vocal.

& # 8226 ; Use examples from the vocal to demo the difference between Tell and say.

Here are some more thoughts for learning collocation:

Learners sort words on cards into their collocational braces ( e.g. warm + welcome, slender + opportunity, aureate + chance, lucky + interruption, assorted + response, etc ) . Use the same cards to play pelmanism. Or they sort them into binomial braces ( braces of words that follow a fixed sequence and frequently have idiomatic significance such as hot and cold, to and fro, out and about, ill and tired ) . Or into groups, harmonizing to whether they collocate with peculiar ‘headwords ‘ : e.g. trip ( concern, twenty-four hours, unit of ammunition, return, boat ) , vacation ( summer, household, public, one month, working ) and weekend ( long, every, last, following, vacation ) . Follow up by inquiring scholars to compose sentences utilizing these combinations.

Read out a list of words: scholars in groups think of every bit many collocations or related looks as they can. The group with the most collocations wins a point. Good words for this include parts of the organic structure ( face, caput, back, pes, manus ) , colorss ( ruddy, green, bluish, black, etc. ) and opposites, such as weak/strong, narrow/wide, safe/dangerous, old/young, etc.

Fill in a collocational grid, utilizing lexicons, to demo common collocations. For illustration, here ‘s a really simple ( and completed ) one for broad and wide.

broad wide
& # 8226 ; door
& # 8226 ; & # 8226 ; street
& # 8226 ; & # 8226 ; river
& # 8226 ; smiling
& # 8226 ; shoulders
& # 8226 ; nose
& # 8226 ; tabun
& # 8226 ; speech pattern
& # 8226 ; universe
& # 8226 ; & # 8226 ; scope
& # 8226 ; assortment
& # 8226 ; apart
& # 8226 ; awake

Ask scholars to fix ‘collocation maps ‘ of high frequence words and their collocates. Wordss like have, take, give, make and acquire lend themselves to this sort of intervention. They are frequently used in combination with nouns to organize an look which has a significance of its ain, as in have a expression, take a interruption, give advice, make an assignment, so that the verb itself has little or no independent significance. For this ground, they are called delexical verbs. Here, for illustration, is a collocation map for rich person, which shows its scope of collocations organised into intending classs:

Learners can either make their ain maps utilizing lexicons or add to an bing map, as this undertaking ( besides from Cuting Edge Intermediate ) suggests:

Because of the bipartite nature of collocations, any duplicate activities lend themselves to work on them. Similarly, odd one out undertakings are utile. For illustration:

Finally, as a general attack to the instruction of lexical phrases and collocation, the undermentioned advice is sound:

– Become more cognizant of phrases and collocations yourself.

– Make your pupils cognizant of phrases and collocations.

– Keep an oculus on usefulness and be cognizant of overloading pupils.

– Feed in phrases on a ‘little but frequently ‘ footing.

– Introduce phrases in context, but bore them as short balls.

– Point out forms in phrases.

– Beryllium ready to reply pupils ‘ inquiries briefly.

– Keep written records of phrases as phrases.

– Reinforce and recycle the phrases every bit much as you can.

( from Cuting Edge Intermediate Teachers ‘ Book, Longman )

4.4 Teaching phrasal verbs

Phrasal verbs are another case of the indistinctness at the boundary between words and grammar. They are peculiarly debatable for scholars both because of their lexical significances ( which are frequently idiomatic ) and their grammatical signifier. Here is how phrasal verbs are frequently grouped, harmonizing to their grammar:

2 There are four types of phrasal verb.

Type 1: intransitive e.g. come to ( retrieve consciousness ) These do n’t take an object.

Type 2: transitive inseparable e.g. look into ( investigate ) These must take an object which ever comes after the verb.

Type 3: transitive dissociable e.g. set off ( postpone ) The object can either come between the verb and the atom or after the verb. If we use a pronoun so it must travel between.

Type 4: three-part, e.g. set up with ( endure ) These are ever transitive inseparable.

from Naunton J, Think Ahead to First Certificate, Longman

Traditional attacks to the instruction of phrasal verbs have tended to concentrate on these regulations. Hence, when phrasal verbs are presented they are categorised harmonizing to whether they are Type 1, Type 2, etc. They are besides frequently grouped harmonizing to their lexical verb ( that is, the word that carries the major portion of the significance ) : acquire up, acquire back, acquire off, acquire over, etc, and exercisings are designed to prove the scholar ‘s cognition of the difference. For illustration:

Use phrasal verbs with get to finish these sentences:

1 1 I ca n’t ________ how much Julia has changed: it ‘s astonishing!

2 Excuse me, I want to ________ at the following halt.

3 The concert was cancelled so I ‘m traveling to see if I can ___________ my money ___________ .

Typical exercising types used in the instruction of phrasal verbs include:

– sentence gap-fills ( as the illustration above )

– re-phrasing: e.g. altering the verb in the sentence ( e.g. depart ) to a phrasal verb that has a similar significance ( e.g. put off )

– matching: e.g. fiting the phrasal verb with its equivalent word

More late, exercising types have focused on the significances of the atoms & # 8211 ; a atom being the adverb or preposition constituent of the phrasal verb ( in, back, away, around, etc ) . A focal point on atoms purposes to sensitize scholars to the shared significances of a group such as carry on, thrust on, bent on, travel on and come on. Here, for illustration, is an exercising sequence that trades with the atom down:

4.5 Teaching parlances

We ‘ve seen that many phrasal verbs are idiomatic & # 8211 ; in that their significances are non easy unpacked from their constituent parts. Knowing the significance of put and up allows us to construe the sentence I put up a shelf in the kitchen. But this cognition is non much aid in take outing either I put Luke up for the weekend or I put up with Luke for the weekend. Both these last illustrations are idiomatic. Idiomaticity exists at both the individual word and multi-word degree. Individual words can be used figuratively, as in This program does n’t catch me ; The kitchen is a pigpen ; I ca n’t take out the significance of this parlance. More typically, parlances are formed from collocations, and vary from being both really fixed and really idiomatic ( smell a rat ; the seashore is clear ) to being both less fixed and less idiomatic ( detonate a myth/theory, etc ; run a business/theatre, etc ) .

Idioms present jobs in both understanding and in production. They are hard to understand because they are non easy unpacked, and they are hard to bring forth because they frequently allow no fluctuation. Few mistakes sound more amusing than an even somewhat muddled parlance ( e.g. I do n’t desire to blow my ain horn, alternatively of I do n’t desire to blow my ain cornet ) . Furthermore, many parlances have a really narrow registry scope, being used merely in certain contexts and for certain effects. They hence need to be approached with a great trade of cautiousness, and most teaching ushers recommend learning them for acknowledgment merely.

Traditional instruction attacks tend to group idioms together harmonizing to some class, and show them in sets. But, as with phrasal verbs, learning a set of parlances that are notionally related & # 8211 ; such as parlances associated with parts of the organic structure ( down at heel, set your pess up, foot the measure, toe the line, etc. ) & # 8211 ; would look to be a certain formula for confusion. It ‘s non hard to conceive of what could travel incorrect: set your heels up, toe the measure, etc. More typically, parlances are grouped by subject. For illustration, the looks under the conditions, away coloring material, run down and out of kinds are all synonymous with ailment. But once more, if these are being taught for production, the potency for confusion is high.

As with phrasal verbs, a more effectual and less parlous attack might be merely to learn them as they arise, and in their contexts of usage. That is, to handle them as single lexical points in their ain right, without doing a vocal and dance about them. Since parlances tend to constellate together, certain text types are frequently really rich in them. In this infusion ( from Sugar ) parlances ( including idiomatic phrasal verbs ) are underlined.


Martin gets a large wake-up call this month when Mark is taken earnestly ill. How will he get by cognizing his large bro ‘s yearss could be numbered and will Nicky lodge by him through midst and thin?

Home and Away

Tom offers to pay for Justine ‘s classs in the metropolis with the money 1 earned from moving in the commercial. What a sweetheart, eh? However, Justine is n’t that impressed, and feels that Tom ‘s cramping her manner. Ho can she allow him down gently?

Coronation Street

The Mike, Mark and Linda trigon ‘s still traveling strong, and flickers are get downing to wing between Linda and Mark ‘s new girlie, Claire. Eeek! Thingss are n’t excessively good over at the Platt ‘s either.


Mark is annoyed when neither of his parents make it to the parent eventide… how awkward! Richie lends Sarah a shoulder to shout on after yet another bust-up with Jack. Will those two of all time acquire on?

To utilize a text like this in category, scholars could be set the undertaking of working 01 the underlined parlances from either their signifier or their context. For illustration, traveling strong is easy unpacked from its constituents. Flickers are get downing to wing is less obvious, but its negative intension can be deduced from what follows ( Eeek! Thingss are n’t excessively good… ) . Showing scholars how to work on idiomatic significance from these sorts of hints can non merely lend t inactive vocabulary cognition but can better reading accomplishments every bit good.


There is more to words than merely ‘words ‘ . In this chapter we have seen:

– how parts of words combine in systematic ways to organize whole words

– how whole words combine in systematic ways to organize balls

But, the fact that these combinations are systematic does non intend that the instruction of word formation or of word combination should needfully be rule-based. The systems may be excessively complicated or excessively irregular to be of much usage to scholars, either for receptive or productive intents.

Alternatively, an attack that combines frequent and contextualised exposure with consciousness-raising may work best. This is recommended for the instruction of:

– complex words

– collocations

– phrasal verbs

– parlances


In this term paper we have looked the deductions of findings for the instruction of vocabulary:

– Learners need undertakings and schemes to assist them form their mental vocabulary by constructing webs of associations & # 8211 ; the more the better ;

– Teachers need to accept that the acquisition of new words involves a period of & # 8220 ; initial indistinctness & # 8221 ; ;

– Learners need to ablactate themselves off a trust on direct interlingual rendition from their female parent lingua ;

– Wordss need to be presented in their typical contexts so that scholars can acquire a feel for their significance, their registry, their colloca