Most ESL teachers have heard about the 12 tenses in English, and of the challenges of teaching the Present Perfect tense. Some teachers may be surprised to learn that there are really only two tenses in English.
Teaching Tenses by Rosemary Aitken is a great addition to the bookshelves of both new and experienced teachers. It offers a thorough language analysis of the tenses and modal structures, with concept questions, suggested contexts and activities, and a selection of photocopiable activities. This book helps teachers be prepared for students’ questions, and is invaluable in helping explain nuances between structures.
Concept Questions are used to elicit function, the intention of the speaker, and form -the grammatical structure that the speaker uses to express meaning (i.e. what he/she is trying to communicate to the audience)-. Concept Questions are used in the Communicative Approach when teaching grammar topics or vocabulary, mainly in the Presentation Stage of the PPP format, or in the Study Phase of the ESA format. Concept Questions are a good way of eliciting information from the students and checking their comprehension rather than explaining the topic with long and difficult definitions that may only confuse the students. They are also a way of getting meaning across in a more effective and student-centered way.
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