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  1. Mehrgan's Avatar
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    #1

    Question Any help with this issue please?

    Hi all,

    Firstly I DO apologise to you because I couldn't come up with a proper title for my question. I'd like to have some ideas, key terms, or anything that can help me start my studies.
    I've recently been so obsessed with these ideas of 'lexical phrases', 'lexicalised grammar', or as some have put it, 'gramaticalised lexis', and their roles in teaching English, and how effectice they are in improving a learner's fluency. Undoubtedly a lot of work must have been done in this area, but I haven't got any special article or academic paper on the this topic. (I'd be happy if anyone could get me some hints how I can have access to any recent work in this area.)

    Besides, some believe that native speakers of any language have, as competence, some 'lexical chunks' which consist of one up to a few words carrying a 'meaning'.

    For example, to me a sentence like 'you could have done it in a much better way...' is a sentence including various items, put together in an awkward way! (I'm exaggerating to get you the feeling a learner might experience the first time they come across such difficult structures.) However, it's believed, that a native speaker might, unconsciously, use it as a single chunk of meaning (a phonetic chunk, perhaps?!). (Something like, '/kʊdəvdənɪt/ or even /kʊdədənɪt/'.

    Do you believe this could ever be used in teaching such structures to learners making them produce meaningful chunks and giving them the time to come up with the rule that governs what they have produced this way?

    I'm sure a lot of you will think this is so trivial a topic compared to the loads of work done in this area. But, this is just an idea I'd like to have more information about. So, please help me by giving me anything you think might help me with this issue.



    So many thanks in advance!

  2. 5jj's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Any help with this issue please?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mehrgan View Post
    However, it's believed, that a native speaker might, unconsciously, use it as a single chunk of meaning (a phonetic chunk, perhaps?!). (Something like, '/kʊdəvdənɪt/ or even /kʊdədənɪt/'.

    Do you believe this could ever be used in teaching such structures to learners making them produce meaningful chunks and giving them the time to come up with the rule that governs what they have produced this way?
    There is certainly something to be said for this approach. One of the problems that learners have if such structures are presented by old-fashioned grammarians like me is that they worry so much about how they can produce them accurately and appropriately that they end up by not producing them at all. Learning them as chunks can be very useful. (pause for breath after that sentence.)

    I remember years ago, while playing cards with friends in Germany, my bemused realisation that I had been using the German equivalent of 'if only I had known that' effortlessly for some time, simply because I heard it in context. I could never produce it when I had to think about it logically and grammatically in my German class at school; juggling with word order and subjunctives made that impossible.

    Drilling comes in and out of fashion. There are grave dangers in drilling that involves context-free, mindless repetition, but it can be used profitably with his type of structure, in my opinion.
    I'm sure a lot of you will think this is so trivial a topic compared to the loads of work done in this area. But, this is just an idea I'd like to have more information about.
    It is not trivial. I wish I had more solid help I could offer in this important area.

    For those who have not read it, there are some very interesting suggestions in this book:
    'Implementing the Lexical Approach' by Michael Lewis

  3. Mehrgan's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Any help with this issue please?

    Quote Originally Posted by fivejedjon View Post
    There is certainly something to be said for this approach. One of the problems that learners have if such structures are presented by old-fashioned grammarians like me is that they worry so much about how they can produce them accurately and appropriately that they end up by not producing them at all. Learning them as chunks can be very useful. (pause for breath after that sentence.)

    I remember years ago, while playing cards with friends in Germany, my bemused realisation that I had been using the German equivalent of 'if only I had known that' effortlessly for some time, simply because I heard it in context. I could never produce it when I had to think about it logically and grammatically in my German class at school; juggling with word order and subjunctives made that impossible.

    Drilling comes in and out of fashion. There are grave dangers in drilling that involves context-free, mindless repetition, but it can be used profitably with his type of structure, in my opinion. It is not trivial. I wish I had more solid help I could offer in this important area.

    For those who have not read it, there are some very interesting suggestions in this book:
    'Implementing the Lexical Approach' by Michael Lewis


    Dear fivejedjon,
    I have every confidence that you have the expert knowledge in this area. You've always kindly overlooked the negative points, but tried to be positive, and I've always appreciated that! The good point is, I'm now determined to bone up on this.
    Many thanks for the useful link too!

    Best wishes!

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    #4

    Re: Any help with this issue please?

    A mistake some native speakers make is to write I could of done it better, which may suggest that they see the phrase as a chunk of sound to be rolled at when needed.

  4. Mehrgan's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: Any help with this issue please?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tdol View Post
    A mistake some native speakers make is to write I could of done it better, which may suggest that they see the phrase as a chunk of sound to be rolled at when needed.

    Thanks a lot!

    Are there any sources where we can find such fixed expressions? I've just happened to remember another structure:

    'What would you do...' which is usaully heard as '/wɒtʃədjə du:/' or '/wɒtʃəʤ jə du:/.


    Cheers!

  5. 5jj's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: Any help with this issue please?

    There are also the pet hates of this forum, wanna and gonna; I suppose we could add hafta, gotta and oughta. Innit? has appeared in BrE as a universal question tag. Sla'a seems to be a common farewell among the younger generation, even when they will not be seeing the other person later..

  6. Mehrgan's Avatar
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    #7

    Question Re: Any help with this issue please?

    Quote Originally Posted by fivejedjon View Post
    There are also the pet hates of this forum, wanna and gonna; I suppose we could add hafta, gotta and oughta. Innit? has appeared in BrE as a universal question tag. Sla'a seems to be a common farewell among the younger generation, even when they will not be seeing the other person later..


    Great!
    And I'm sure I've heard this one in a film: '/ʌdəv təʊld ju:/' for 'I would have told you'. If I'm not mistaken!

  7. 5jj's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: Any help with this issue please?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mehrgan View Post
    And I'm sure I've heard this one in a film: '/ʌdəv təʊld ju:/' for 'I would have told you'. If I'm not mistaken!
    You are not. Also: /dətəʊlʤə/

  8. 5jj's Avatar
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    #9

    Re: Any help with this issue please?

    However, we have to be careful with this. Whilst its acceptable, even desirable to enable learners to recognise and, we hope, use the normal pronunciation of such expressions, we don't want to encourage more way-out possibilities.

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