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Can you say it grammatically

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					Lesson plan: Can you say it grammatically?

   Level:           Intermediate +
   Skills:          Reading and speaking
   Language:        Some language related to insurance claims
   Content:         A discussion on variation in language and
                    attitudes towards dialects.
   Time:            1 hour

   You will need a clip in from the BBC quiz show The Weakest
   Link. This can be found at YouTube (Type “The Weakest
   Link” into the search window.)




                       Preparation

   Make copies of Worksheets 1 to 3 for each student in class
   (note that Worksheet 2 consists of two pages)




                                                                1
                               Lesson plan

1.       Write ‘Ambulance Chaser’ on the board and ask students if they can
         guess what this is.

2.       Tell your students that you are going to give them a transcript of an
         interview. Give out the first part of the interview (Worksheet 1) and ask
         students to answer the questions at the bottom of the sheet.

          Note: An ‘Ambulance Chaser’ is a derogatory term for a lawyer that
          represents accident victims in court. If their clients are found to be
          entitled to compensation, then the lawyer receives a fee.

3.       Show students the YouTube clip in full

4.       Find out if students have The Weakest Link in their country or countries.
         If so, ask them if they can explain the rules (these can be found on
         Wikipedia.org)

         (NB Versions of this quiz show are produced in Australia, Azerbaijan,
         Belgium, Chile, China, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia,
         Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Israel,
         Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Mexico, Poland,
         Portugal, Panama, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Serbia, South Africa,
         Turkey, and the USA. The format is distributed by BBC Worldwide, the
         commercial arm of the BBC. It is the second most popular international
         franchise after Who wants to be a millionaire?)

6.       Put students into pairs and give out copies of Worksheet 2. Ask them to
         cut up the individual lines and put them into the correct order. Please
         note that this worksheet contains 2 pages.

7.       Let students share and compare their answers before playing the clip
         again in full and allowing them to check their work (see answers at the
         end of the next page).

8.       Ask the following questions:

     •   What is Marcus saying that Anne says is wrong?
     •   Marcus thinks that it might be a double negative. Do you know what this
         is?
     •   Do you agree with Anne that Marcus’ statement is not grammatical?



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      •   Can you think of anything that people say in your language that gets this
          same response?
      •   What is the difference between a language and a dialect?

9.        Write the following aphorism on the board and ask your students if they
          can explain it:

                  A language is a dialect with an army and navy.

10.       Give out copies of Worksheet 3 and ask students to complete it.




     Answer to Worksheet 2:

     Anne:         Yes. Have you always had hairy arms?
     Marcus:       Since I was about 12 so not always, but a long
                   time.
     Anne:         And don’t you think it would be quite scary if
                   you knocked on my door with your hairy arms?
     Marcus:       Erm, I wear a long-sleeved shirt during work
     Anne:         Do you?
     Marcus:       Yes. Unless it’s the summer, then I wear a
                   short-sleeved one
     Anne:         Right. Have all your family got hairy arms?
     Marcus:       Erm, my mother doesn’t but my brothers do.
     Anne:         Really? And if I said I’d tripped over a paving
                   stone … where do you come from?
     Marcus:       I come from Bury in Lancashire.
     Anne:         If I said I’d tripped over a paving stone in
                   Lancashire, could you help me?
     Marcus:       So long as you wasn’t wearing high heels at the
                   time, then yes.
     Anne:         You can’t say, “so long as you wasn’t”.
     Marcus:       I just did
     Anne:         Can you say it grammatically?
     Marcus:       So long as at the time you wasn’t wearing your
                   high heels …
     Anne:         No, no ,no! Don’t you know what you’re saying
                   wrong?
     Marcus:       Double negative? I don’t know – no.




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            Worksheet 1 (Interview – Part one)

A:       What do you do B?
M:       I’m a claims adviser
A:       And how do you find customers?
M:       Erm, some find us, erm, some people, we find on the
         street, and some people, we knock on their doors
A:       You knock on people’s doors?
M:       Yeah
A:       And what do you say?
M:       We just, eh, tell them that we’re there at the moment
         and we’re trying to find people that are entitled to
         compensation
A:       Oh, you’re ambulance chasers!
M:       We’re very much ambulance chasers
A:       So you’re responsible for our insurance premiums going
         up and up and up because you’re encouraging people who
         wouldn’t normally claim to claim so you can make
         money.
M:       Correct


Questions:
1.       Do you think A is a man or a woman? Do you think M is a man or a
         woman?
2.       Who do you think these people are?
3.       Where do you think the interview taking place?
4.       Why does A not approve of M’s job?
5.       The term ‘Ambulance Chaser’ is an example of a derogatory name.
         Does that mean that it is a negative or a positive term?
6.       Find words that mean:

     •   To attempt to get money from your insurance company after a burglary,
         accident, fire, etc.
     •   The money that you pay your insurance company each month or year.

7.       What do you think A’s next question will be (you are about to see the
         interview in full)?




                                                                                 4
          Worksheet 2 (Interview – Part two)

Cut up the 18 lines from the interview and put them into the correct order:




Anne:        Really? And if I said I’d tripped over a paving
             stone … where do you come from?

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Anne:        And don’t you think it would be quite scary if
             you knocked on my door with your hairy arms?

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Anne:        Do you?

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Anne:        If I said I’d tripped over a paving stone in
             Lancashire, could you help me?

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Anne:        Right. Have all your family got hairy arms?

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Anne:        Can you say it grammatically?

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Anne:        You can’t say, “so long as you wasn’t”.

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Anne:        Yes. Have you always had hairy arms?

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Anne:        No, no ,no! Don’t you know what you’re saying
             wrong?



                                                                              5
Marcus:   So long as at the time you wasn’t wearing your
          high heels …

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Marcus:   Yes. Unless it’s the summer then I wear a short-
          sleeved one

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Marcus:   Double negative? I don’t know

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Marcus:   Erm, my mother doesn’t but my brothers do.

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Marcus:   I just did

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Marcus:   I come from Bury in Lancashire.

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Marcus:   So long as you wasn’t wearing high heels at the
          time, then yes.

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Marcus:   Erm, I wear a long-sleeved shirt during work

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Marcus:   Since I was about 12 so not always, but a long
          time.




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Worksheet 3 (More examples of non-standard
                 English)

Here are some more examples of non-standard (or dialectal) English. You
would not find these examples in your text book. In each case, can you find the
non-standard part?


1.    I amn’t doing anything special tonight.


2.    I’ll give it you tomorrow.


3.    I seen you in town yesterday when I was on the bus.


4.    I didn’t do nothing wrong.


5.    What would you do if it would happen to you?


6.    Sometimes I sits and thinks, and sometimes I just sits.


7.    It don’t sound right.


8.    Where’s me cup of tea?


9.    When I was young I was eating 3 or 4 times in a day. Of course now
      I’m not so young and I can’t eat so much.


10.   Can you help me? I’m needing some advice.


11.   I’ve ate hardly anything today.


12.   I like swimming but I haven’t still learned the technique of putting
      my head to the side and taking a breath.


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