Teaching Verb ‘Be’ to Arab English Learners: Challenges and Solutions (70282)

Session Information: Challenging & Preserving: Culture, Inter/multiculturalism & Language
Session Chair: Teresa Abainza

Saturday, 25 November 2023 14:15
Session: Session 3
Room: Room E (Live Stream)
Presentation Type: Live-Stream Presentation

All presentation times are UTC + 9 (Asia/Tokyo)

The verb ‘be’ has always been a challenge for English learners of Arabic background. The linguistic equivalent of the verb ‘be’, the copular ‘kaana’, is usually omitted in the present simple form. As a result of first language interference, learners tend to omit verb ‘be’ in the present simple form. It is particularly more challenging for beginner language learners as they are more likely to think about the utterance in their first language and translate it in their heads following their mother tongue's structure. For that reason, beginner learners produce sentences such as ‘He teacher’ ‘I happy’. Addressing the problem requires contrastive linguistic awareness of the matter on the teacher’s part. Conjugating verb ‘be’ poses another challenge for learners. The different forms of the verb makes it confusing for learners that they need to be reminded that it is still the same verb. This session explores the difficulties imposed by verb ‘be’ for beginner English learners of Arabic background particularly. To pinpoint the problem and find solutions it is important to identify the root cause of the problem using error analysis techniques. The session then sheds light on the different methods used in presenting and teaching sentences with verb ‘be’ in the present simple form to aid learners in producing grammatically correct sentences. Attendees will be provided with practical activities to use in teaching verb ‘be’ to struggling learners.

Jumana Al-Amir, Box Hill College Kuwait, Kuwait

About the Presenter(s)
Ms Jumana Al-Amir is a University Assistant Professor/Lecturer at Box Hill College Kuwait in Kuwait

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Posted by Clive Staples Lewis

Last updated: 2023-02-23 23:45:00