Questions tagged [grammar]

The grammar of a language defines the way in which its sentences are constructed by establishing its structure, syntax, and morphology

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24
votes
4answers
1k views

Is doing a huge amount of grammar exercises helpful for learning English?

Some books that teach English come with pages and pages of grammar exercises. Are these helpful? I see that a few exercises are helpful to help you understanding the grammar. However, after that, ...
18
votes
3answers
3k views

What resources are there for learning Toki Pona?

I recently started using Memrise to learn Toki Pona, because I find that language to be very interesting. Memrise is indeed useful regarding vocabulary, but I think it is not enough. Are there other ...
12
votes
2answers
93 views

Strategies to deal with declensions

Languages like German or Russian have declensions. However my native language does not have those declensions, and thus I have a hard time understanding their “point”, that is their added meaning and ...
11
votes
5answers
190 views

Are there learning resources to drill my Dutch?

When I was learning English we used lots of exercises that were referred to as use of English, which help you train some particular grammar. Now, I am learning Dutch and most of the exercises ...
10
votes
1answer
97 views

Grammar and language learning books/software for Irish

I am currently learning Irish with the help of the Android application "Duolingo". It doesn't teach me the grammar; it works with translating sentences. I don't think the app is very useful; ...
10
votes
0answers
74 views

How to practice honorifics?

Japanese has honorifics (敬語 - "keigo"), a feature of which my native language English is devoid. For example, there is different vocabulary and grammar to use when speaking to a social superior, about ...
9
votes
3answers
2k views

How can I put grammar rules into flashcards?

Putting vocabulary into flashcards is (relatively) a no-brainer: word -> translation, translation -> word. (Yes, it can be more complicated than that, but that's the gist of it.) Grammar rules, on ...
9
votes
2answers
153 views

Why learn English grammar first? Just gets in the way

I watch Thai kids learning grammar; they can diagram English sentences at age twelve but almost tremble with fear when addressed with "How are you?" (as often as not they say "I am 12 years old.") My ...
9
votes
2answers
77 views

Identifying cases by rephrasing to a question – is this any useful for language learners?

Background The German language has cases, but for many words some or all cases are identical. However, interrogatives are distinct for each case. Therefore native speakers often identify the case of ...
9
votes
1answer
1k views

French Grammar Book B1/B2

Salut! My French is currently around level B1+ and I'm planning on spending 2-3 months in a French-speaking country and fully commit myself to improving my abilities. The goal is to have quite good ...
9
votes
1answer
248 views

What resources can I use to master German word order?

There are a number of tricky parts to learning German, but for this question I'm particularly concerned about word order. I'm using Duolingo and I often miss questions where this is the only thing I ...
9
votes
2answers
116 views

What are the advantages of tables with declension endings to study a declension system?

Update: What I'm asking is if there's any evidence in the field of language learning stating if a mere table with declensions is useful for learning those declensions. This is opposed to the usual ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

List of Chinese "verb plus object" verbs?

In Chinese, many verbs consist of two characters. However, not all two-character verbs function in the same way. One category of two-character verbs consists of verbs where the two characters cannot ...
8
votes
1answer
126 views

Are second languages processed the same way as first languages?

Everyone who is cognitively normal is capable of learning a language natively. The fact that humans seem to have an innate capacity to learn any natural language is one of the underlying principles of ...
8
votes
3answers
95 views

Slightly Incomplete Sequential Acquisition, Possible to Fix?

I have had my first exposure to English at about six years of age (and have used it ever since), and I generally consider myself a native speaker since I use it a lot (even if this is probably ...
7
votes
1answer
96 views

How do natives write without knowing grammar rules?

Grammar is boring, but how can native speakers write academically, without mistakes, without knowing the grammar rules they learnt in high school? Most natives learn grammar when they are in school, ...
7
votes
2answers
900 views

Is it possible to learn grammar through spaced repetition, and if yes, how?

Spaced repetition is mostly used for learning vocabulary, but learning vocabulary is not all there is to learning a foreign language. Grammar also needs to be acquired, one way or another. Since doing ...
7
votes
2answers
126 views

How can I speak in impromptu situations without organizing my thoughts beforehand but still communicate properly?

I have a problem that has been bothering me since I became conscious of it. I am not fluent in my speech. This has really affected my confidence such that I'm not able to speak in impromptu situations,...
7
votes
2answers
64 views

What should I focus on if I only have 10-20 minutes a day, with speaking practice once a week?

I have a friend who is willing to help me speaking a relatively rare language here in the U.S. (Afaan Oromo) once a week over the phone. When I was calling him regularly several months ago, I would ...
7
votes
2answers
100 views

Should I correct my grammar mistakes or just ignore them while practice speaking?

While practice speaking a foreign language, I often find myself make a mistake during the speech and correct it immediately. The mistakes usually come from grammar, which I rarely do in writing. For ...
7
votes
1answer
455 views

How to learn conjugations?

Perhaps it's because I'm still not very familiar with Russian but I often find myself using the wrong conjugation for specific verbs. How do I go about memorizing those? I thought about drawing a ...
7
votes
2answers
151 views

Is there an online resource to exchange grammar corrections in one's native and target languages?

I have a text written in English (scientific). I want to ask somebody to give me some advice in writing and grammar. I have time to do the same for other persons in Spanish, my native language. Is ...
7
votes
1answer
93 views

How does the existence of a case system affect the learnability of a foreign language?

Case is a grammatical category that can be found in Slavic languages, Finnic languages, Greek, Japanese, Tamil, etc. (The Finnic language Veps apparently has 23 grammatical cases, and tops even ...
7
votes
3answers
167 views

Is there evidence that languages with complex grammar take longer to learn as a mother tongue?

This question is about learning to speak a language as a mother tongue (i.e., from birth (L1), not as a second language (L2)). Some languages have more grammar rules than others (number of cases, ...
6
votes
3answers
920 views

When studying German, how much time should be spent on learning grammar rules vs. vocabulary?

How much time do I need to give to learning grammar rules versus vocabulary while studying German, or is it possible to speak a foreign language without needing to learn grammar rules?
6
votes
2answers
562 views

German grammar books with exercises and answer key for self study

I am looking for a grammar book or series of grammar books for German that match the following criteria: the book or books must be in German, i.e. all grammar rules and instructions must be in German ...
6
votes
2answers
86 views

Going from 9.5/10 to 10/10 in grammatical correctness in spoken English

I speak French natively, with a level of spoken English I would rate at around 9 or 9.5 out of 10, in terms of grammatical accuracy. (My written English is at least as good.) Problems I sometimes ...
6
votes
1answer
936 views

French grammar books with exercises and answer key for self study (A2 - B2)

I am looking for a grammar book or series of grammar books for French that match the following criteria: the book or books must be in French, i.e. all grammar rules and instructions must be in French ...
6
votes
1answer
110 views

Is there any research on the effectiveness of learning verb tables?

I own books with verb tables for French, German and Spanish, i.e. for several languages with rather elaborate verb conjugations. At school, I was made to learn such conjugations for French verbs and ...
6
votes
2answers
96 views

How can an advanced learner in an FL context get rid of grammatical errors?

Imagine someone who learnt foreign language (FL) from the same language family as his native language (L1) for three years at secondary school and then continued studying this language at university. ...
5
votes
3answers
99 views

Explain contemporary high-school language teaching to me [closed]

I do appreciate the answer to this question varies on where you are in the world but I'm happy to hear of different approaches from different countries. I'd be particularly interested in responses ...
5
votes
2answers
33 views

How to understand prepositions in German properly?

I'm currently stuck with prepositions in German, because I can't find a good English approach to them. Take the word, von, as an example. It means "from, about, by" -- according to this ...
5
votes
2answers
51 views

Looking for a book or class to help me perfect my already fairly good English

I'm really struggling to write properly in English. I'm making a lot of mistakes. Thus, I'm looking for a book to enhance my skills. Unfortunately, everything I found so far explains in detail what is ...
5
votes
0answers
50 views

Do Romanian nouns use the same gender as corresponding Latin nouns?

Both Latin and Romanian have three noun genders - masculine, feminine, neuter. What is the level of correspondence between genders in these two languages? That is, do the same words use the same ...
5
votes
0answers
57 views

Spanish grammar books with exercises and answer key for self study

I am looking for a grammar book or series of grammar books for Spanish that match the following criteria: the book or books must be in Spanish, i.e. all grammar rules and instructions must be in ...
5
votes
0answers
62 views

How and where can I begin learning grammar and syntax in their most abstract form?

I am interested in learning grammar and syntax. I use those words because that's what I learned in middle school, perhaps what I'm really trying to learn is more aptly described by the term '...
4
votes
2answers
90 views

Does memorizing French verb conjugations with the sound of English characters have negative impact in the future?

I'm struggling to memorize the verb conjugation in French as different conjugations are pronounced the same but the characters are different. For example, I tend to write the following sentence: Nous ...
4
votes
1answer
117 views

Question about Macedonian Grammar

I'm trying to learn Macedonian and one if the resources out there was paraphrased as saying the following about the Macedonian language: Belamaric-Wilsey says that the majority of Macedonian-...
4
votes
1answer
81 views

Spanish vs Russian rules

I am a native English speaker, and I also speak Spanish with a decent accent having lived in Spain for years. For example I know how to roll my 'r' letters the Spanish way. I have decided to learn ...
4
votes
1answer
518 views

Grammar book for Russian B2-C1 exam preparation

I would like to review Russian grammar for passing the entry exams at a Russian university. Can you please suggest books where I can find structured chapters on Russian grammar? UPDATE I can ...
4
votes
1answer
83 views

Grammar books with exercises and answer key for autonomous study of Italian

I am looking for a grammar book or series of grammar books for Italian that match the following criteria: the book or books must be in Italian, i.e. all grammar rules and instructions must be in ...
4
votes
2answers
72 views

What types of resources can a native speaker of Dutch use to teach Dutch grammar to non-native speakers?

Most native speakers aren't linguists, so they may get stumped when non-native speakers ask them grammar questions. So what types of resources can a native speaker of Dutch use to teach Dutch grammar ...
4
votes
2answers
53 views

How can I find the correct word order for Marshallese sentences?

I am trying to make a set of cards (for the card game "Kloo") in the Marshallese language. It's basically color-coded for noun, verbs, etc... to be placed in a certain order. How do I discover the ...
4
votes
0answers
83 views

The "fully grammatical" approach towards learning Indo-European languages

I have stumbled upon this video on Youtube (sorry - it is in Russian). Here's a short summary: The spokesperson introduces the following scheme of learning an Indo-European language: "Learn by ...
4
votes
0answers
46 views

What can teachers do to promote or increase mastery of 把 structures in Standard Chinese?

Each lesson in the Chinese series of texbooks New Practical Chinese Reader contains a section entitled "Master the following phrases". Below are a few examples from lesson 16 (in volume 2): 现在就去 - ...
4
votes
1answer
63 views

What strategies can students use to learn grammar when studying independently? [closed]

I would never advise students to focus mostly on grammar, but spending some time focused on grammar can be useful (Paul Nation recommends spending 25% of time focused on language, including grammar ...
4
votes
0answers
65 views

Is there evidence that supports the idea that vocabulary is more important than grammar in conversation? [duplicate]

"Focus on your vocabulary first, then fix your grammar." This is a maxim that has been drilled into my head over several years of my Spanish teachers saying this, but is there really any truth to ...
3
votes
2answers
146 views

Can English people understand my English even if I do not use English grammar, but just words, adverbs and context?

I would say English language is way too difficult because of its grammar. For example, we have to conjugate many different tenses. Other languages such as Vietnamese do not conjugate tenses. For ...
3
votes
1answer
64 views

How does the existence of a separate present progressive tense affect the learnability of a foreign language?

In English, the present progressive tense has its own distinguished syntax. For example, the present progressive I am writing differs from the simple present tense I write. On the other hand, in ...
3
votes
1answer
57 views

Creating flashcards for grammatical rules that requires a few steps of thought, such as SPOCK versus WEIRDO

If there's grammar rule that requires a couple of steps of thought in order to create the correct output, how do I put it into flashcards? For example, Spanish has (as well as imperative) the ...