Some of the problems we are having are the following:
- subject verb agreement in the present tense
- using present when past is needed
- using one past tense rather than the other more appropriate one
- subject verb agreement in other tenses
While this is a reality of moving students up the proficiency scale, I don't think there is anything wrong with making them aware that some of those mistakes confuse their audience. This might be through conversation failures or constructive feedback. Either way, at some point our students have to know that the communicative darts they are sending are not hitting the desired point on their target. Sometimes, they aren't hitting the target at all.
Because our goal is to become narrators of stories, I don't want to dictate what is right or wrong per se. I really want them to become more self aware. Being that much of our learning over the last year and a half has been based on discovery, what my students have stored in their brains probably looks much like a garage stuffed full of junk. At some point they stopped worrying about WHERE to put things and just started stuffing. Or maybe that person stuffing was ME at times. Either way, spring time is a great time for purging, cleaning and organizing,
NOW is a great time for verb charts, but not necessarily TEACHER CREATED verb charts. At least not at first. The products you see here were NOT created by me until AFTER my students and I collaborated on organizing what they know on whiteboards. Why? Wouldn't it be easier to create the chart and hand it to them?
Yeah, about as much as having someone else come spring clean your house. When someone else cleans it, they don't know what things mean to you or where to put them so you can find them again.
During this mental organization process, I guide by giving the shelving units that focus my students' thinking. THEY have to put the things on the shelves. So, we literally work this out on the whiteboards. Me on the big one, them on the little ones, but here's the type info we cover:
In closing let me reiterate, these items are not meant for front loading grammar. They are how we process and organize what we have learned to better understand how to get our point across. Also, the goal is not perfection AT ALL, but to become more aware of our own intentions when telling stories or communicating. At the end of level two I would like to think that we are beyond just saying SOMETHING and now need to be more purposeful about making that something meaningful so that we can meet whatever communicative goal we have.
Happy Coaching, friends!