Topic: KS4

Relevant for UK National Curriculum Key Stage 4.

Identify the word formation process

Identify the word formation process by clicking the correct answer.

Main verb or auxiliary verb?

Is the highlighted verb a main verb or an auxiliary verb?

Perfect or progressive aspect?

Decide whether the highlighted verb phrase is perfect aspect or progressive aspect?

Sentence types: Simple, compound or complex?

Simple, compound or complex? Look at each of the following examples, and click on the right sentence type. Remember that the current National Curriculum prefers single-clause and multi-clause instead of the simple / compound / complex distinction.

Subordinate or main clause?

Try to identify which clauses can stand on their own (click Main) or those which can’t (click Subordinate). The capitals and punctuation marks have been removed to make this slightly less obvious.

Tag questions

Do the following examples contain tag questions or not?

Keeping a Language Log

Introduction

Most of the time, students' work in English is assessed by things that they write about things that they have read. For example, their exams may consist of writing about a Shakespeare play they have studied, or perhaps some non-fiction texts like advertisements or extracts of journalism from a newspaper or magazine.

Language of spam

Introduction

If you’ve got an email account, inevitably you’ll have received spam. Whether it’s adverts for vicodine or Viagra, single Russian women looking for fun (and your sort code), appeals for money from the daughters of deposed Nigerian generals, or requests to update your details from a bank that you don’t have an account with, spam is all around us.

Martian grammar

This is a unit about the grammar of an invented language, ‘Martian’. It uses students’ (often subconscious) understanding of morphology to help them uncover the ‘rules’ of a made-up language. To ‘crack’ the language, they will need to break down the words into meaningful parts.

Martian grammar: Activity 1

Aliens have landed on Earth, but don’t worry: they come in peace. Or at least, we think they do, but we can’t quite understand what they’re talking about.

Their language is not familiar and even highly trained experts are struggling to work out what they are saying. Your job is to work with the Martian examples that they have translated and work out some of the rules of their language. In doing so, you might even learn something about your own language.

Martian grammar: teacher feedback

Once you have worked through the Martian grammar activities, you can look at some of the things you have discovered.

Let’s look at some elements of grammar that we have identified in the Martian grammar exercise:

Prepared speech

Using corpora to investigate prepared speeches

One very simple approach to using corpora in English lessons is to pull apart a speech using the programme Wordle, which can be found here. Wordle creates simple but beautiful images made up of words in a text that you can input.

Texting styles

Recent research into texting suggests that different people use different styles. The style you use is influenced by factors such as your age, the social group you spend most of your time with, and whether you’re male or female – but also by your personal relationship with the person you’re texting and what you’re texting about.

A framework for language analysis

This page includes a handout on which you will find a framework for language analysis, developed over time through our Teaching English Grammar in Context course.

Starting to analyse a text can be a rather intimidating task. Where to start? What to include/not include? And how to do this systematically, rather than simply pulling out grammatical features at random and trying to write some kind of cohesive analysis?

Clause types: advanced

In the National Curriculum no terminological distinction is made between the grammatical patterns of the clause types, and the way that these clause types are used. In linguistic studies different terminology is used for the former and latter. What follows is not statutory in the NC, but some readers may appreciate some more background on terminology.

In linguistics the terms declarative, interrogative, imperative and exclamative are used to talk about grammatical patterns.

Sentence types: simple, compound, complex

This unit further explains simple sentences, compound sentences and complex sentences, which were introduced in the unit 'Clauses: main and subordinate'. Simple sentences contain one clause, while compound and complex sentences contain more than one clause.

National Curriculum note: The National Curriculum now refers to sentences that contain one clause as single-clause sentences, and those that contain more than one clause as multi-clause sentences.

Tag questions

Questions like ...isn’t it?, ...haven’t they? and ...wouldn’t you? that sit on the end of a statement are called tag questions in linguistics. There’s a range of different tag questions most people call on, varying by verb, tense, person and whether the tag is positive or negative.

Tag questions: Innit

For some people, innit is just another tag question, a contraction of isn’t it. But kids in urban Britain are using innit to cover a wider and wider range of situations. Here are some examples of non-standard use, gleaned from recent messageboard postings:

National Curriculum Introduction (Secondary)

Purpose of study

English has a pre-eminent place in education and in society. A high-quality education in English will teach pupils to speak and write fluently so that they can communicate their ideas and emotions to others and through their reading and listening, others can communicate with them. Through reading in particular, pupils have a chance to develop culturally, emotionally, intellectually, socially and spiritually. Literature, especially, plays a key role in such development. Reading also enables pupils both to acquire knowledge and to build on what they already know.

National Curriculum KS4: Reading

Pupils should be taught to:

National Curriculum KS4: Spoken English

Pupils should be taught to:

National Curriculum KS4: Writing

Pupils should be taught to:

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