Vera Duncanson


    The three important  ideas that can potentially help me change my view of corpora as something too complicated to use with my learners are as follows.

    1. As a teacher, I should not be scared to use corpora in the classroom as this should not necessarily require (too much) additional preparation time.

    2. I should not scare away my learners with words like corpus linguistics, corpora, concordance, but should perhaps call it a tool (for checking collocations, grammatical patterns, etc.).

    3. Corpus data does not need to be a focus of a whole lesson – use little but often to develop a habit (in learners as well as myself).

    I could immediately try:

    1. (gap fill) handouts using concordances, in response to the actual learners’ needs ;

    2. instead of providing ready made answers, to use corpus data to demonstrate to the learners how they can find an answer  themselves (the difference in the meaning between too words, e.g. cause – reason; whether it is possible to use a certain collocation; observe certain grammatical patterns, as in the example from Frankenberg-Garcia’s article about the use of the present perfect after It’s the first time …)

    I’m still not quite sure about specific websites/corpora to go to. I need to practise using these tools so the skill becomes automatic before I can demonstrate their use to the learners.