In Other Words: Lessons on Grammar, Code-switching, and Academic Writing

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Heinemann, 2009 - Education - 150 pages

Hear a podcast where David West Brown and Rebecca Wheeler discuss code-switching.

In Other Words is a tour de force. As a linguist and teacher educator, I am grateful to David West Brown for bringing his powerhouse of knowledge and real-world savvy to our 21st-century English classrooms. -Rebecca S. Wheeler Coauthor of Code Switching In Other Words provides teachers with practical step-by-step suggestions for helping secondary students understand and produce the academic writing expected in school. No other text on writing that I am familiar with lays out the keys to successful academic writing as well as this book does. -David E. Freeman Coauthor of Essential Linguistics Grammar doesn't have to be boring! David West Brown shows us how to facilitate students' use of standard English in their writing, lifting grammar from the page and into students' habits. -Douglas Fisher Coauthor of Word Wise & Content Rich Some of your students may need a better grasp on conventional grammar. Others may need help with the demands of academic writing. Still others may write in Vernacular English or have limited English proficiency. But all of them need to be able to use Standard English well to succeed in school and in the workplace. In Other Words helps adolescents build facility with the formal register of school by connecting its conventions to the conventions of the language they speak outside the classroom. In Other Words presents 35 detailed, practical, and sensitive lessons using examples drawn from commonly taught literature and from popular culture. For students who need it most, you'll increase their exposure to academic English. At the same time, you'll support deeper language study throughout the classroom.
  • Lessons on informal English help students find alternatives to commonly spoken but academically inappropriate expressions such as the colloquial like.
  • Lessons on Vernacular English bridge the language of home and school to help vernacular speakers code-switch effectively and master formal writing.
  • Lessons on academic language help all students internalize the subtle grammatical structures that separate academic writing from other genres.
For each lesson, David West Brown provides a concise background in the supporting theory, as well as reproducible student handouts. And a Making the Lessons Your Own section helps you extend his ideas for code-switching and language study into both the writing process and assessment. It offers specifics for both integrating language study into your teaching and conducting ongoing assessments. Use In Other Words and embed language study into everything you do. You'll soon see that while there's no such thing as a standard student, every student can communicate effectively in Standard English.

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