English Grammar Sequencing Ideas

Written by arash farzaneh
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English Grammar Sequencing Ideas
Grammar sequencing helps you express your ideas better. (Jupiterimages/BananaStock/Getty Images)

After having a good grasp of grammar rules in the English language, it is necessary to learn how to connect ideas and to link sentences, both in speaking and writing. There are different exercises and activities that can help you practice those skills and make you more proficient in the English language.

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Telling Stories

Telling stories is an excellent way of practicing grammar sequencing. As most stories are in the past, it will reinforce the correct use of simple past verb tenses, such as "I went..." etc. At the same time, students can relate to previous events with the use of the past perfect, such as "I had never been..." Students can either hand in stories in writing or tell them verbally in class.

Linking Words

Linking words are essential for writing essays, but they are also frequently used in speech. Students need to organise ideas in sequences, "first," "second," "lastly," but also for adding information or giving examples. They can practice linking words through discussions and debate, where it is often necessary to give reasons, such as "due to" or "because of" and to oppose previous arguments with contrasting ideas, such as "however" or "on the other hand." Whether in writing or speaking, students benefit from incorporating linking words into their vocabulary.

Verb Tenses

Although verb tenses can be practised with telling stories, they are much more complex when it comes to academic writing. In addition to the simple past tense and the past perfect, students will have to employ other tenses as well, such as the present perfect or even the conditional. Ask students to write more complex essays by consciously incorporating various tenses and by using the future tense and the conditional, for example. You can use hypothetical questions starting with "What if..." and have them compare different scenarios.

Transition Words

Grammar sequencing is not only organised in time, but also logically. As an exercise, you can give students a list of sentences and have them connect them with time sequences, such as "after," "before" and "while," as well as with logical connections, for example, contrasting words like "although," "despite" or "nonetheless."

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