English 326
Fall, 2000
John C. Schafer
Office: 213 Founders' Hall
Office Hours:
Tues.: 1:30-2:30
Thurs.: 10:00-12:00
E-mail: jcs1@axe.humboldt.edu

LANGUAGE STUDY FOR TEACHERS

I. Course Description and Objectives

English 326 is an introductory course in language designed primarily for prospective teachers. It is a course in language, not in how to teach language or language arts. Its purpose is to give you accurate information about the English language, focusing on the following topics:

The above topics will be covered using lecture/discussion and group work. The following topics will be covered by group projects:

English 326 is not a course in how to teach English as a second language or in how to teach reading or writing. But it is crucial preparation for teaching these subjects. Many of our activities are designed to assist you in making connections between what you're learning about the English language and issues related to teaching ESL (TESL) and language arts. For example, the assignment on invented spelling will give you a chance to apply your new knowledge of phonetics to analyze the writing of first graders. Group projects on reading and phonics and grammar and writing and other topics will give you a chance to apply your knowledge of linguistics to issues of classroom practice. In other words, I've designed the course to help you make connections between the kind of language analysis you will be learning in English 326 and the challenges you will face as a teacher. This design reflects my experience that English 326 students learn more about the English language as they begin to think about it in the context of their chosen career as teachers.

II. Textbooks

III. Requirements

  1. Attendance: Absences make the grade go lower.
  2. Reading: You'll be reading chapters from our two textbooks and articles in our course packet and also some additional reading to prepare for your final projects (See below).
  3. Exercises: To help you understand the material, I will assign exercises from time to time.
  4. Paper on invented spelling: You'll analyze a journal kept by a first grader and observe progress from invented to conventional spelling.
  5. Final Project: This includes an individual paper and also a group presentation to the class. The project is explained below.
  6. Tests: There will be three tests. Test 3 will be given during our final exam period.

IV. Grading

Three tests: 30%
Group work: 25%
This grade is based on attendance at group meetings, your exercise book (part of your packet), a self-evaluation, and the grade your group receives on the group's final group project.
Individual paper related to group project: 20%
Paper on invented spelling: 15%
Class participation: 10%
As mentioned above, poor attendance will hurt your grade.

V. Lab or Activity Hour

This is a four-unit, not a three-unit, course. Our class meets regularly in the classroom on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. In addition, you will meet in groups to discuss work on various exercises and projects, including your final project. Sometimes I will attend these group meetings; sometimes I won't. Meeting times and the location of these group sessions will be arranged during the second or third class.

VI. Late Papers

Papers turned in late will be automatically marked down one grade per every day late. For example, an A paper turned in a day late would be graded A-; a B paper two days late would be graded C+, etc.

VII. Syllabus

Note: Almost all readings are from An Introductory English Grammar (abbreviated IEG) or Dialects in Schools and Communities (abbreviated LRLC) or from the course packet. I've placed some readings useful for your group projects on reserve in the library. There will also be some shorter handouts.

Week 1

Assignment for group work: No group meeting this week.

Mon., Aug. 28: Introduction; Goals of Course; What Are Phonetics, Morphology, Syntax, Sociolinguistics?
Diagnostic Test
Wed., Aug. 30: Phonetics: Vowels

IEG, Chap. 1, especially pp. 7-23

Before you come to class today, read about your assignment to do a group project.
Fri., Sept. 1: Phonetics: Vowels (Continued)

Week 2

Assignment for group work: Do the exercise called "How to Pronounce an English Consonant Sound" (Separate handout) and discuss the results at your group meeting.

Mon., Sept. 4: Phonetics: Consonants

IEG, Chap. 1 (Already assigned; review pp. 23-30.)
Wed., Sept. 6: Phonetics: Consonants (Continued)

For information on the International Phonetic Alphabet, click on I.P.A. Look at the consonant chart and count the number of consonant sounds represented. Compare this chart to the chart of English consonant phonemes in IEG, p. 27. How many of the IPA's consonant sounds are found in English?
Fri., Sept. 8: Phonemes and Allophones; Phonemic and Phonetic Levels of Representation

Handout "Levels of Representation"; study also "The Phoneme" in IEG (pp. 11-13).

Week 3

Assignment for group work: Transcription exercises 1 and 2. Do the exercises individually before the group meeting and discuss your results with group members.

Mon., Sept. 11: Group Activity on Common Pronunciation Problems of Non-Native Speakers

Materials for group activity will be distributed in class.
Wed., Sept. 13: Spelling and Pronunciation

IEG, Chap. 3
Fri., Sept. 15: Invented Spelling; Explanation of Paper on Invented Spelling

Susan Sowers, "Six Questions Teachers Ask about Invented Spelling" (Packet)
Donald R. Bear and Shane Templeton, "Explorations in Developmental Spelling: Foundations for Learning and
Teaching Phonics, Spelling, and Vocabulary" (Packet)

Week 4

Assignment for group work: Transcription exercises 3 and 4. Do the exercises individually before the group meeting and discuss your results with group members.

Mon., Sept. 18: Invented Spelling (Continued)

No reading assignment
Wed., Sept. 20: Invented Spelling: In-class Group Activity

No reading assignment
Fri., Sept. 22: Long and Short Vowels

No reading assignment. Begin reviewing for test.

Week 5

Assignment for group work: Transcription exercises 5 and 6. Review for first test.

Mon., Sept. 25: Review; Practice Dictation

Review for test.
Wed., Sept. 27: First Test

Study for test.
Fri., Sept. 29: Different Definitions of Grammar; Explanation of Group Reports on Usage

IEG, Chapter 18

Week 6

Assignment for group work:

(1.) Begin discussion of final group project. See handout entitled "Group Projects." Before your group meeting, everyone should have read the article listed in the "Group Projects" handout--the article that I have indicated is a good introduction to your topic.

(2.) Verb Tense Exercise 1: Simple and Progressive Tenses (Simple Present, Simple Past, and Simple Future; and Present Progressive, Past Progressive, and Future Progressive)

Mon., Oct. 2: Morphology

IEG, Chap. 8, pp. 87-105 (Note: This isn't the whole chapter.)
Wed., Oct. 4: Parts of Speech: Form Classes

IEG, Chap. 12

Paper on Invented Spelling Due
Fri., Oct. 6: Parts of Speech: Form Classes (Continued)

No additional reading assignment. Continue to study IEG, Chap. 12.

Week 7

Assignment for group work:

(1.) Help each other prepare reports on a usage issue. (Short oral report to be given to the whole class on Mon., Oct. 16)

(2.) Verb Tense Exercise 2: Simple and Progressive Tenses (Cont.)

As you work on your usage reports, click on usage for a website that may be useful. The material provided here is brief, however, and you will need to consult some reference books (see assignment sheet) as well.

Mon., Oct. 9: Syntax: Structure Classes

IEG, Chap. 13
Wed., Oct. 11: Syntax: Structure Classes (Continued)

No additional reading assignment.
Fri., Oct. 13: Noun and Verb Phrases

IEG, Chap. 14

Week 8

(1.) Assignment for group work: Hear reports from members on their area of responsibility.

(2.) Verb Tense Exercise 3: The Perfect Tenses (Present Perfect, Past Perfect, and Future Perfect)

Mon., Oct. 16: Reports on Usage Issues

Prepare usage reports.
Wed., Oct. 18: Group Reports on Usage Issues (Continued)

Prepare usage reports.
Fri., Oct. 20: Basic Sentence Patterns

IEG, Chap. 15

Week 9

Assignment for group work:

(1.) Work on Final Group Project.

(2.) Verb Tense Exercise 4: The Perfect Progressive Tenses (Present Perfect Progressive, Past Perfect Progressive, and Future Perfect Progressive)

Mon., Oct. 23: Basic Sentence Patterns (Cont.)

Wed., Oct. 25: Positional Classes

IEG, Chap. 16, pp. 249-259
Fri., Oct. 27: Positional Classes (Cont.)

IEG, Chap. 16, pp. 269-270 (Omit section on verb-adverbial composites.)

Study carefully exercise 16-19 (pp. 269-270), a review of the four positional classes.

Rough drafts of individual papers related to group projects are due. Bring copies to give to your group members and to me.

Week 10

Assignment for group work:

Note: This week groups meet twice: once during the regular group meeting time and once during the regular class period (and in the regular classroom) on Wed.

Read drafts of papers written by your group members, fill out written response forms, and share your thoughts regarding your group members' papers during your regular group meeting and when your group meets during class time on Wed., Nov. 1.

Mon., Oct. 30: Video: American Tongues

No additional reading assignment

Wed., Nov. 1: Group Members Respond to Drafts of Individual Papers Related to Group Presentations
Fri., Nov. 3: Review for Test 2

Week 11

Assignment for group work:

(1.) Continue responding to group members' papers if you didn't finish on Fri.

(2.) Verb Tense Exercise 5: Review of the Twelve Tenses

Mon., Nov. 6: Test 2
Wed., Nov. 8: Language Variation in the U.S.; Defining Dialect, Accent, Slang, and Standard English

Dialects, Chapters 1 and 4

Click on atlas for information on the Linguistic Atlas of the U.S. projects.

See the Phonological Atlas of North America for recent information on English dialects that is based on a telephone survey of the major urbanized areas of the U.S. and Canada.

The Center for Applied Linguistics also maintains a good site for information on dialects.
Fri, Nov. 10: How Dialects of English Differ; How Dialects Are Studied

Dialects, Chapters 2 and 8

Do exercise in Dialects on "Levels of Dialect" in box 8.2 (pp. 177-180); and also exercises on how dialects pattern in boxes 8.4 and 8.5 (pp. 190-200).

Week 12

Note: Optional group meetings this week. Meet if you need to in order to plan your group presentation.

Mon., Nov. 13: Video: "Black on White" (from the Story of English series)

Holmgren and Cosmos, "Black on White: The Development of a Major Social Dialect of Modern English" (Packet)
Wed., Nov. 15: Pidgins and Creoles

LRLC, Crystal, #23, pp. 321-327

Read material on a website called the Creolist Archive which has good information on pidgins and creoles. For this class (Nov. 15) read the 16 answers in the FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) section. Click on the block labeled "Text Collection" for sample creole texts. Click on the block labeled "Speech," then on "Jamaican" (under English-lexicon creoles), then on "An Anansi Story." Listen to this story and be ready to talk about this text in class today. (Your computer will have to have speakers and Real Audio software to enable you to listen; the software can be easily downloaded from the internet. If you can't listen to "An Anansi Story," you can at least read it.)
Fri., Nov. 17: Origins of African American Vernacular English):

Adetokunbo K. Borishade, "The Niger-Kordofanian Linguistic Bases of African American Ebonics: A Creole
Language" (Packet)
Robbins Burling, "Where Did It Come From?" (Reserve)

Look also at the ebonics web page maintained by the Center for Applied Linguistics.

THANKSGIVING VACATION

Week 13

Assignment for group work: Work on Final Group Projects. Groups will be meeting in class on Friday of this week. Members of each group can decide whether their group needs to also meet during the group meeting time this week.

Mon., Nov. 27: Dialects and Classroom Strategy

Dialects, Chapter 7
Fri., Dec. 1: Group Planning Meetings

Meetings of groups during regular class time to do final planning for reports to class.

Final draft of individual papers due.

Week 14

Assignment for group work: No group meetings unless a group needs to meet to finish planning for group reports.

Mon., Dec. 4: Group Presentation: Grammar and the Teaching of Writing

Wed., Dec. 6: Group Presentation: Acquisition of Language

Fri., Dec. 8: Group Presentation: Comparing English to Other Languages

Week 15

Assignment for group work: No group meetings unless a group needs to meet to finish planning for group reports.

Mon., Dec. 11: Group Presentation: Reading: Phonemic Awareness, Phonics and the Search for a Balanced Approach

Wed., Dec. 13: Group Presentation: Gender and Language

Fri., May 7: Review for Test 3

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MWF 12:00-12:50 Section: Final exam (Test 3) is Wed., Dec. 20 from 10:20-12:10.

MWF 2:00-2:50 Section: Final exam (Test 3) is Mon., Dec. 18 from 12:40-2:30.

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List of Exercises and Articles in Packet

Note: This packet can be purchased at the HSU Bookstore. These exercises and articles are listed in the order they appear on the syllabus.

Transcription Exercises

Transcription Exercise 1: High Front Vowels and /ay/ Dipthong
Transcription Exercise 2: High Back Vowels, Central Mid-Vowel, and "R-Colored" Vowel
Transcription Exercise 3: Low Central and Low Back Vowels and the Dipthongs /aw/ and /y/
Transcription Exercise 4: Mid Back, Mid Front, and Low Front Vowels
Transcription Exercise 5: Interdental and Alveo-palatal Fricatives
Transcription Exercise 6: Alveo-palatal Affricates, Velar Nasal, and Aspirated /hw/

Verb Tense Exercises

Verb Tense Exercise 1: Simple and Progressive Tenses
Verb Tense Exercise 2: Tense and Time Reference
Verb Tense Exercise 3: The Perfect Tenses
Verb Tense Exercise 4: The Perfect Progressive Tenses
Verb Tense Exercise 5: Review Exercise on Verb Tenses

Articles

Sowers, Susan. "Six Questions Teachers Ask about Invented Spelling." Understanding Writing. Ed. Thomas
Newkirk and Nancie Atwell. Chelmsford, MA: Northeast Regional Exchange, 1982. 47-56. [No ISBN listed]
Bear, Donald R. and Shane Templeton. "Explorations in Developmental Spelling: Foundations for Learning and
Teaching Phonics, Spelling, and Vocabulary." Reading Teacher 52 (Nov., 1998): 222-242.
McKay, Janet Holmgren and Spencer Cosmos. "Black on White: The Development of a Major Social Dialect of
American English." The Story of English. Dubuque, Iowa: Kendall/Hunt, 1986. 97-106. ISBN: 0 403 4035 4
Borishade, Adetokunbo K. "The Niger-Kordofanian Linguistic Bases of African American Ebonics: A Creole
Language." Western Journal of Black Studies 18 (1994): 1-10.