Word order

We have to have some sort of structure to organise words if we are to communicate. That structure is a big part of grammar. Linguists use a term – syntax – to describe word order.

The Activity page appears in the menu entitled 'This Unit' in the upper right. The Activity page can be displayed using a projector or smart board, or printed for distribution to students. Students should take a look at the sentence pairs on the slide in the Activity page. In each pair, the words are exactly the same but they are in a different order. Ask students why the word order is important using the following questions:

  • How does word order affect the meaning? 
  • How can we explain the relationships between particular meanings and particular word orders?
  • Can we describe patterns or rules for the word order in the examples and the meanings conveyed?


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