"English Hates Doubles!" Watchdog
This phrase has a lot of power alone and can be used as a slogan for intermediate students. It can be stated that there are exceptions to this rule, but state it as being like a "grammar watchdog" and they learn a number of grammar rules with a lesser tendency towards certain errors. Students who wonder why they can't say for example "I did ate dinner," could be reminded that there is no double past tense. Students who wonder why " I have not" can't be contracted to " I'ven't" can be reminded that there are no double contractions. Sutdents who wonder why they can't say " I don't never eat fish, " can be reminded that there are no double negatives. Students who wonder why they can't say "childrens" or can be reminded that there are no double plurals. While obviously there are plenty of grammar rules which allow doubling usually at later levels, this rule is a good one, a watchdog for early prevention fossilizing common errors.
World's Best Jobs!
Dave's ESL Cafe Copyright © 2008 Dave Sperling. All Rights Reserved.