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Here Below you can check out the feedback (for one of our units) of one of the 16.000 students that last year took an online course with ITTT!
I have finally reached the final unit on basic grammar for EFL, and am surprised to be disappointed that it's over. Throughout the course of the grammar units I have gained a kind of confidence that despite the difficulty of grammar, these are all very teachable topics. The writer of the unit encourages us: "Don't be afraid of phrasal verbs!" and I think that this applies to all grammatical topics that might seem daunting at first.
In addition to the teaching activities and ideas suggested at the end of each section, we teachers should try to use things like phrasal verbs and modals in everyday speech, and this will help the students to pick up the patterns naturally. After all, this is how I learned them, once upon a time: hearing patterns and replicating them naturally. Therefore I was surprised, while reading the section on modal verbs, to read that modal verbs don't change in form according to person. The reason I was surprised wasn't because I had thought it to be another way--it's not as if I go around saying "he must studies" or "it might rains" or anything like that--but what surprised me was that I had never questioned this aspect of the form. The reason I hadn't questioned it is because it's part of my natural speech patterns, and that is the level that I will aim to get to with my students.
The section on passive voice also surprised me, because as a creative writer I am often being told to diligently replace passive voice with active voice--but here we are, learning how to teach passive voice to students! It actually makes total sense, though, despite the irony. Passive voice is used everywhere, to the disappointment of creative writing teachers everywhere, and our students need to be comfortable with this aspect of grammar.
Now that the units on basic grammar are over, I am interested in checking out some of the grammar references suggested in the introductory unit. I'm sure there are more "grammar surprises" awaiting me.