Children don’t have to be told that ‘cat’ and ‘cats’ are variants of the same word—they pick it up just by listening. To a computer, though, they’re as different as, well, cats and dogs.
One of the greatest misconceptions in education today is that certain teachers have a higher natural aptitude in technology than others.
This inspirational graphic sets out to disprove that notion and remind the audience that external skills are only a function of the internal dispositions that allowed them to grow.
Creating tutorials and explanatory guides is best done through the help of screenshots. These are pictures we take of our screens to share with others or include in a visual demonstration of how, for example, a process works. As teachers and educators we often find ourselves in need of such visual annotations and cues to enhance our students comprehensibility. There are several web tools that we can use to create screenshots and we have already reviewed some of them in past publications here. Today, we are introducing you to what we consider to be the best 4 web tools for creating screenshots. Besides being free, these tools are very simple to use and are also student friendly. They will allow you to capture your screen, crop and annotate your pictures using arrows, colours, shapes, text and many more.
Facultad de Letras, Universidad de Murcia
I concede that Morphosyntax II is not an appealing subject name, not the one that will attract students in their thousands. Besides, the apposition “II” only worsens things: what if I missed “I”? Will I do it again? Why two of them? Isn’t one just enough? Just a few months ago I read the following in The Guardian:
Using the word “grammar”, can conjure off-putting images of an old-fashioned classroom. It makes it sound like a secret you’re not let in on, and has associations of “right” or “wrong”. On the other hand, “understanding” or “knowledge about language” make it sound more positive. World famous David Crystal said: “You have to put the notion of grammar in the background. It’s about meaning and clarity. Clarity unites us. I’m not afraid to use the word grammar, but I can see why people would be.”
I found this totally spot on. Re-shaping knowledge is part of our scientific tradition: labels and tags are constantly renewed as new discoveries and theories help us challenge traditional ways to look at reality. Now, we can understand language using tools that were unthinkable just a few decades ago. Today we know that language use differs as contexts of use focus on different discourse functions. Today we know that language is used differently in a research paper than in a magazine article and that fiction and conversation are not so different as many would think.
Morphology and syntax have been parts of the canon for philologists for over a century now. “Grammar”, however, was there centuries before. In fact, the first English Grammar, Pamphlet for Grammar, by William Bullokar, offers somewhat identical units of analysis as those by Douglas Biber and his team. It was 1586.
Talking about The Buckinghamshire Grammar Project Day in 2014, Hudson, the linguist, said: “In the 60s, a day like today would be unimaginable. But it’s very different now. It’s a big issue and it’s an exciting time for grammar. Grammar is old, international and big. It isn’t a peculiarity of a few people who think it’s a good idea.
These days we use online databases, e-dictionaries, language corpora, style checkers, spelling correctors and the like. We need to make a good use of these tools but, most of all, we need to learn to understand how language works across different registers so as to go deeper into how language-related communication works. Isn’t that why we do what we do?