Grammar as an enabling skill
Though a skill in its own right, grammar can also be regarded as anecessary ³master´ skill that enables competence to develop in theareas of listening, speaking, reading, and writing. When grammar isincorrect or misunderstood in any of these areas, communication may be disrupted, as the following examples illustrate.
Imagine a teacher who says, ³Please bring me the books,´only to have a student bring her just one book because the student didnot hear the plural
or understand what it means. In this case, a better understanding of the underlying grammar would haveimproved the student¶s listening ability
In a job interview, an applicant is asked, ³How long haveyou been working at your current job?´ The applicant replies, ³Iworked there for two years.´ The interviewer wonders: Is theapplicant still working there or not? In this situation, knowledge othe present perfect would have enabled the student to reply moreaccurately.
Trying to follow the directions for assembling a bookcase,a student reads
Not knowing that
signals the first of the twoactions in the sentence, the student performs the actions in reverseorder.
Filling out a form at his job in an automotive repair shop,an automotive tech student writes
eading thereport, the supervisor is confused: Did the student already check the brakes? Is he going to check the brakes? If the student had written
on the report, there would have been no ambiguity.These examples illustrate the role of grammar as thefoundation upon which all the other skills are built. Efficientcommunication cannot take place without correct grammar.
Grammar as a motivator