Chapter 4 Nouns, pronouns, and the simple noun phrase
Getting an Overview of Chapter 4 Look carefully at page 55. Wow. Now, remember, this is a reference book. You need to have read through to have a general understanding. But You are not trying to memorize the whole book. So, start by Reading page 55 carefully. Get a sense of how the chapter is organized and where the authors are taking us. Note any terminology that you do not understand. When you’ve done that reading, we’re ready to look at the essential information that you need to be sure you understand this chapter.
Section Summaries • STOP! Don’t get impatient. You’ll save time and energy by being a smart reader. • Go to each of the section summaries. Read each carefully. Then, start here again. Click to get a list of the pages for the summaries. • Page 64 Types of Nouns • Page 77 Types of Determiners • Pages 84-85 Number and case in nouns • Page 92 Gender and the formation of nouns • Page 101 Types of Pronouns • PLEASE read through these summaries • And then continue with the • PowerPoint • Slides
Check out “visible data” • Flip through the chapter to see where they put tables and/or figures. I expect that anything they put into a table or figure is important information that they’ve given special treatment. So, looking ahead gives me some information about where to put my time and thought. After you’ve looked, click to see my list. • Table 4.1 (p. 65) • Table 4.2 (p. 66) • Table 4.3 (p. 66) • Table 4.4 (p. 67) • Table 4.5 (p. 76) • Table 4.6 (p. 91) • Table 4.7 (p. 93) • Figure 4.1 (p. 67) • Figure 4.2 (p. 72) • Figure 4.3 (p. 82) • Figure 4.4 (p. 84) • Figure 4.5 (p. 84) • Figure 4.6 (p. 91) • Figure 4.7 (p. 93)
Types of Nouns • Nouns as a word class…various sub-groups • Based on meaning: concrete vs. abstract • Based on grammar: count vs. noncount • As an ESL/EFL teacher, the most important information here is about count & noncount because forming noun phrases with them can be tricky. • So, let’s look at the top of page 57 and at section 4.2.2.
Count Nouns Singular book, child Plural books, children Noncount Nouns Not singular & not plural “this kinda stuff” Rice Music Knowledge Homework News Count & Noncount
Culture & Counting • “Countability is partly a matter of how we view the world, rather than how the world really is.” (p. 57) • Words can be countable in other languages and not in English. • In Japanese, the word for “homework” is countable: Children turn in their homeworks. • Words can be countable in other version of English and not in U.S. English. • In Indian English, the word chalk is countable. Teachers can have 2 chalks.
Lists of Noncount Nouns • Many words can be either count or noncount depending on their meaning: • I like coffee. (noncount) • I bought a coffee at Starbucks. (singular count noun) • However, most words have typical uses…used more as noncount than count or used more as count than noncount • Tea: typically used as noncount: “I like tea.” • In Bank of English’s 450,000,000 words • Tea is used 26,332 times! • A tea = 922 times • Teas = 1115 times
Merrily we go along…. But when we turn the pages and get to section B on Determiners We’re at a hugely important topic for ESL/EFL Teachers and Our Students. So….. Turn to Page 65 • You need to read carefully everything you can find about count and noncount nouns • You can just flip through the pages on other noun categories to know what’s there but not to give detailed attention right now.
Determiners • Determiners determine noun meaning. For example, think about how the meaning of a noun like book changes with different determiners: • His book • Her book • That book • The basic noun phrase often involves the combination: determiner + noun • What to read here? • Every single word of section 4.5 • Every single word of section 4.6 • Every single word of section 4.7. • And anything that you do not understand you should ask me about. This is important for you and your students. So, make a note To remember The importance of These sections When you Settle down To read The chapter.
Determinersssss • Why so many determiners? • What’s going on? • What are determiners really about? • What is it that we are doing when we make selections from among this really large system of words? • Come on….come on….it’s on the tip of your tongue. There are a lot of different determiners because we….. That is, Determiners need To be taught & learned As ways to control NOUNs & Noun meaning Because we have Lots of different Meanings we want to make With nouns! Determiners Are About NOUN PHRASES!
Definite vs. IndefiniteGeneric vs. Specific • These terms are used to talk about the meanings of the various combinations of determiners and noun • The terms are used especially to separate out the meanings involved with the articles • Indefinite and specific: I bought an apple in the cafeteria. • Generic:An apple is a type of fruit. • Definite and specific:The apple on the table is for my lunch. • Generic: The apple is an important agricultural product. • Indefinite and specific: I bought some bread at the Market. • Generic:Bread is a staple food in many countries.
Reference categories Two Other Associated Terms Cohesion: how grammar ties a passage together: using pronouns and other grammar to tie sentences together Coherence: how conventional organization & cultural expectations tie a passage together: the storyline • Another way that linguists talk about meaning is to focus on meaning in context….and the ways that whole pieces of communication are tied together. • As we communicate in speech and in writing… • sometimes we say things that point ahead to what’s coming next. • sometimes we say things that point back to what happened or was said before. • sometimes we talk about things that are happening right there as part of the conversation and we kinda just point at the person or object to indicate what we’re talking about. • These different ways of making connections are talked about in terms of “reference.” Look at the A, B, C, etc., headings on pages 70-71 • It’s worth taking some time to learn this information and these terms because they show up all over the place in linguistics and various other related fields (socio, psycho, SLA, etc.)
Anaphoric • Looking back…. • Pronouns are used for anaphoric reference. They connect back to previous nouns. • (like in these 2 sentences: they connects back to pronouns) • The is often used for anaphoric reference, too. • Look at the examples on page 70. You can see how the refers back….and thus helps to tie the passage together. That’s an example of grammatical cohesion.
Cataphoric • This type of reference looks ahead….you say something that anticipates something new. • Check their examples on page 71 to see how the catapults the meaning ahead…and suggests that there’s more to come.
Situational • The situations can be local and immediate: • In a classroom, we talk about the door, the chairs, the board, etc. • Larger settings: the sun, the moon, the president, the city council members • Nice example: • Take a look at #8 on page 71 when mis-communication takes place. That’s really nice to see because it does happen to us all the time when we assume that the context is shared when it isn’t. ESL/EFL teachers and students have similar experiences all the time!
Number & Case & Gender • Number, case, & gender are old and traditional grammar terminology. • And these 3 terms are still very commonly used today to help us think about the characteristics of English. • However, because they were developed in analysis of languages like Latin and Greek the terms are not always a completely useful fit with English. So, we’ll proceed carefully.
Number Number = count = singular or plural nouns & pronouns Regular count nouns: book, books Irregular count nouns: child, children Number contrast in pronouns: I, we There’s useful information about noun spelling for irregular plurals on pages 78-79. You do not need to memorize all that information although you probably know a lot of the words already. As an ESL/EFL/ESOL teacher, you do need to know that the categories exist and where to get the details to use for vocabulary development for your students!
Case • Case involves • changes in form to indicate changes in grammatical function. For example, a language can have one version of a word for the subject of a sentence and another version of a word for the direct object. These are often called “subjective” or “nominative” and “objective” or “accusative” case. • Other types are “dative” for indirect objects and “genitive” for possessive forms. • Well, now, what case forms do we have in English? Look at these sentences: • The teacher gave the homework to the students. • The students thanked the teacher for the homework. • English nouns do not change form when they move from one grammatical function to another. Subject forms are the same as object forms. • However, we do have noun forms for the possessive….the “genitive” case: • The teacher’s suggestions helped her students with their homework. Pronouns have more case forms than nouns. Subjective: she, he, I, we Objective: her, him, me, us Genitive: her, his, my, our Nouns have possessive or genitive case forms. Pat’s grammar students have questions about case. You’ll sometimes read linguistic studies that use the term “case” for the “grammatical meaning” of forms. Just realize that the linguist does NOT think that English nouns have case forms But that when used in sentences noun phrases take on the meanings associated with subject or object position.
Genitive & ESL/EFL/ESOL • You’ll have to teach students how to form and use the possessive. • They have to learn grammar and also spelling and pronunciation. • So, read through the examples and the headings to get a general sense of the resources here. You’ll be coming back to these pages a lot in your teaching career. Also, you’ll want to go to the BIG Longman Grammar of Spoken & Written English To get more information to use In materials, lessons, and curricular plans.
Of-phrase vs. Genitive • Pages 82-85 are really really important. • You and your students will struggle with this material. When to use ‘s? When to use of? • Lots of what is in grammar textbooks is not accurate. You need to do some studying to be sure that you are teaching your students the real thing. • The Longman grammars….the student grammar and the Big grammar…are based on research into how English is used. You can trust this information. Make a note To study This content!
Grammatical Gender Those differences are In the meaning of the words Not in anything to Do with grammatical Forms. • Section D of Chapter 4 begins with this statement: “Gender is not an important grammatical category in English.” (p. 85) • English pronouns have gender based forms: she vs. he • There are no GRAMMATICAL gender classes for nouns. • WHAT?!! What about the difference between man and woman or boy and girl? Isn’t that gender?
Grammatical Gender & ESL/EFL/ESOL • You need to recognize when students from languages like French, Spanish, & Portuguese are having trouble with English because they are applying grammatical gender from their L1 to English. • You might see students from Chinese backgrounds struggling to keep the pronoun forms under control….using he when to mean she. It’s really more of a vocabulary development problem than a grammar problem. (Although keeping grammar and vocabulary separated is often not wise or necessary.)
Gender Bias • You might need this information in your own academic writing since APA style requires that we avoid biased language in our academic writing. • You might also need to teach students how to use appropriate language in their academic writing and to understand the cultural values that lie behind these grammatical decisions.
Noun Formation • Pages 88-91 are just the kind of material that we need to remember we can find in a reference grammar. • We can use this information for vocabulary development. • Be sure to notice the register differences that they have found. So that learning these words can be put into correct contexts. • Also pay a lot of attention to their frequency data. While there are many affixes on the lists on pages 89 and 90, Figure 4.6 suggests that we should focus our teaching on a much smaller list.
Pronoun Types • What do you need to know? • You need to know the names for the types and some examples. • You need to know about the use of these forms in different registers. So look at the figures carefully and read the explanations that go with the figures carefully.
Now What? • Read the chapter. • Listen to and read the other parts of my lecture on WebCT. • Do the quizzes. • Make notes about any of the information that might be important for your paper. • Email me with your questions. Remember that I want to hear about what you do NOT understand…your questions about the parts of the chapter that confuse you.