word order (was Re: Random DWJ discovery of the day)

Rene Fleischbein rene_fleischbein at hotmail.com
Sat Apr 2 18:02:54 EST 2005


When I was teaching English in Jordan I had to teach the order of 
adjectives.  This was very frustrating because I knew the right order but 
didn't know why or even how I knew.  It was strange to have to read the 
teacher's manual to find out why which type of adjective went where.  It was 
even stranger to have the students asking me why I didn't know how I knew 
this.  Convoluted, no?

>From: HSchinske at aol.com
>Reply-To: dwj at suberic.net
>To: dwj at suberic.net
>Subject: Re: word order (was Re: Random DWJ discovery of the day)  Date: 
>Fri, 1 Apr 2005 15:50:31 EST
>
>In a message dated 3/31/2005 8:27:12 PM Pacific Standard Time, Colin Fine <
>colin at kindness.demon.co.uk> writes:
>
>
> > There are rules for the ordering of adjectives in English (for example
> > colour adjectives go
> > closer to their head than almost anything else).
> > Strangely, these are never taught in English schools (I don't know
> > whether they're taught to
> > learners of English as a second language). Why not? Because, unlike some
> > of the rules which
> > have traditionally been taught in schools, they are actually part of
> > English, and as such are acquired unthinkingly
> > by *every* English-speaking child with normal language abilities.
>
>These rules are taught to ESL students, I *think*. I heard of them first in
>my copyediting class last quarter, and I believe (but am not completely 
>sure)
>that the instructor had found them in an ESL resource. I can look through 
>the
>handouts if anyone actually cares. (Now someone will point out that they're 
>in
>the Chicago manual, which I'm too lazy to go check despite it sitting not 
>four
>feet from me, and I'll have egg on my face. Too bad!)
>
>Helen Schinske


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