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It maintains that such research trends, which are of a sociocultural orientation, believe that reflexivity fuels language learning and development. According to this perspective, the goal of grammar instruction ought to be less of an articulation of a syllabus of grammar contents and procedures the what and the how but more of a prompting of metalinguistic activity in the classroom in the form of social interaction , as a source of learning a plethora of concepts that allow reflecting on both the grammar system and language use the what for.

It also locates metalinguistic activity within the pedagogic system, i. L1 Grammar instruction and writing: Metalinguistic activity as a teaching and research focus. Language and Linguistics Compass 10 5 , — Taylor, T. Language constructing language: The implications of reflexivity for linguistic theory. Language Sciences 22 4 , — Hudson, R. Grammar instruction. MacArthur , S. Graham , and J. Fitzgerald eds , Handbook of writing research 2nd edition pp. London : Guilford. Towards a rationale for research into grammar teaching in schools. Research Papers in Education 29 5 , — Locke ed London : Routledge.

Some scholars have dismissed grammar as a system and as something well worth exploring and considered that grammar leads to a sort of reified knowledge independent from language use. This would give us a more informed stance when approaching the phenomenon within the communicative flow. Dolz and C. Simard eds Ribas , X. Fontich , and O. Guasch eds Grammar at school: Metalinguistic activity in language education.

Brussels : Peter Lang.

Power students' writing with essential composition, grammar, and thinking skills

Grammar instruction in the Hispanic area: The case of Spain with attention to empirical studies on metalinguistic activity. This is the week when students learn about the intersection between grammar reflection and writing. This space is intended to prevent grammar and language use from operating as independent realms by drawing on metalinguistic activity as source of knowledge when adequately scaffolded by the teacher.

Myhill, D. Research Papers in Education 27 2 , — Camps and M. Milian eds Metalinguistic activity in learning to write. Amsterdam : Amsterdam University Press. A classroom intervention on Spanish grammar and writing: The use of the past tense with secondary school students. Culture and Education 27 4 , — Milian, M.

Reformulation: A means of constructing knowledge in shared writing. Zayas, F. What is our own experience of learning grammar at school? Embedded in writing and as such implicit? Detached from language use? Embedded to some extent in language use e.

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In what ways can the same grammar concept e. To what extent can such viewpoints be complementary? To what extent is discussion on grammar issues possible? Can you think of what conditions a task should fulfill in order to make classroom interaction turn into a meaningful procedure in learning grammar?

Learning Spanish – The Big Picture

Could metalinguistic writing also reach the status of a useful tool? Can you think of grammar content that would be better approached when embedded in writing tasks, with regard to other content that, detached from language use, should first be approached on its own? Can you think of interconnections between writing, grammar, and text revision? Can you think of ways to expand traditional grammar teaching sessions e. This exercise aims at familiarizing students with two ideas. First, reflection is at the core of teaching and learning processes.

And second, while all theoretical approaches to the study of languages deserve equal respect, not all of them endorse reflexivity as theoretically relevant. This activity aims at increasing awareness of the incidence this may have in classroom practice. The effect this may have on classroom pedagogy is that interaction may be seen as an important technique for classroom management but not as the crux of the matter for language development.

In other words, whereas languages allow for linguistic communication from the former perspective, for the latter, it is communication that triggers languages, resulting from an emerging process that leads towards a perceived and stable set of rules. This perspective maintains that while rules may explain how a language works, rules are not seen to trigger the process of linguistic formation. A survey can be prepared to explore the position of a number of linguists, educational researchers, practitioners, undergraduate students, and primary and secondary pupils.

1. Build A Sizeable Vocabulary In Spanish

A brief questionnaire can draw on the four themes at stake i. The answers can be interpreted through the lenses of the two approaches mentioned i. The more you practice, the easier it will get. Instead, try short stories and other easy books. Stories should also be compelling to read and involve interesting plots.

The more you lose yourself in the story, the more you focus on the meaning rather than on the grammar or the unknown words. The following books will leave you with a feeling of achievement as you progress through stories suitable for beginner and intermediate level students.

This book contains pages of unconventional German short stories that are perfect for A1-B1 levels. Each of the stories in the book is designed to be fun and engaging with just the right amount of new vocabulary. The language is conversational and natural, and manageable chapters, combined with a gentle introduction of new grammar will have you enjoying reading in German from the very beginning.

I took this story concept even further with the creation of my German Uncovered course. Instead of learning through textbooks and grammar rules, you go from beginner to intermediate in German by immersing yourself in an intriguing story. I've developed this more natural approach to language learning through years of language study and experimentation.

And now I've put all my knowledge together in German Uncovered so you can learn though story too. Check it out here. The story contains realistic characters and descriptions of the world of crime, art, and cabaret during the Weimar Republic. This is a must-read for German language beginners.


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Reading books with stories you recognize can present a great opportunity to improve your German skills. This is another fascinating story written by the author Michael Ende. He was one of the most popular German writers of the 20th century and well-known for his juvenile fiction. This strange story of time-thieves and the child who brought stolen time back to the people is an excellent and very entertaining!

The plot is somewhat unusual too — telling the story of a salesman who wakes up one day to find he has been transformed into an insect. The vocabulary is relatively simple, and the story is easy to follow making this a great work of fiction that all German language students need to read. Its interesting story and relatively basic grammar and vocabulary make this novel great for beginner learners. The story follows the life of an engineer who values rational and practical thinking. However, an exciting chain of events forces him to reconsider his view on life.

Beginniner and intermediate language students will find this story compelling and without too many grammatical challenges along the way. The story is easy to understand and uses straightforward grammar. This novel is perfect for those who want to practice learning vocabulary through context.

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These are just a few of many excellent books to help you start reading in German. So what are you waiting for? Take your pick and find yourself a comfy place where you can sit down and relax as you practice your German reading skills. Do you have a favourite German book? Do you use reading as part of your learning? Let me know in the comments below! You can also have grammar lessons, expressions and quizzes.


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Some of their material requires a subscription. They have a special section for Latin Spanish and also Spanish for Kids. Every article has an audio file and most also have video. In this way, you can practice your reading and listening as well as learning new expressions and vocabulary.

The website design is very attractive, with many pictures and a tabloid format.

Navigation with smartphones and tablets is also very easy. The texts are often long and include a photogallery. BioBioChile is an online news site based on current news of Chile and also from around the world. It is one of the most visited website in all Chile and the most followed in social media in all the country.

The site collects news from all the associated radio stations of the company, such as BioBio Deportes sports , El Informador news , or Continuidad Musical music , among others. Europa Press is one of the most important private news agency of Spain that covers news from all Europe and the world.