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Grammar books for new N.American ESL teachers about do CELTA

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Joined: 05 Feb 2004
Posts: 2
Location: Tokyo, Japan

PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2006 6:43 pm    Post subject: Grammar books for new N.American ESL teachers about do CELTA Reply with quote

Am doing a CELTA course in Vietnam in a few weeks and have been checking out English Grammar reference books, but none have struck me as portable and as a good reference guide.

There were some recs from the school I am taking CELTA at, but they are all books from the UK that have been hard to get a hold of in the US.

Any recs on grammar ref books that you picked up in the US would, simply, rock!

Much appreciated in advance,
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Joined: 26 Oct 2004
Posts: 3030
Location: UK > China > Japan > UK again

PostPosted: Thu Oct 19, 2006 1:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

About the smallest grammars you can get are the Oxford Pocket ones: Swan's Oxford Pocket Basic English Usage and Thomson & Martinet's Oxford Pocket English Grammar (these were mentioned over on the international forums recently, which is why I remember them. They're the same dinky size as the Oxford Learner's Pocket Dictionary, which you might've seen on your travels). I just looked and they are available through at least. Personally though, I'd prefer to take a larger and doubtless somewhat more comprehensive grammar with me (see links below for some recommendations)...but hey, if luggage space and general weight/size/portability really is an issue, then you could try getting something on CD-ROM (e.g. the Collins COBUILD on CD-ROM pack, or the slightly later Collins COBUILD III, both of which include COBUILD's 3rd - better than their 4th! - edition dictionary, a thesarus, their English Grammar, their Usage Guide and a 5-million word Wordbank drawn from American as well as British sources; or how about the recent Cambridge Grammar of English by Carter & McCarthy, which includes a CD-ROM with the entire book in searchable format, plus audio for every example sentence (all of which are clearly based in their re-recording on authentic originals)). Don't forget also that a lot of grammatical info (alongside many useful examples) on e.g. the use of articles, or the functions of a particular modal verb, can be gleaned from advanced learner dictionaries such as those from Longman, Macmillan, Oxford and Cambridge (and all are available with increasingly innovative accompanying CD-ROMs).

You could also (if you haven't done so already) try contacting your CELTA training center and asking what grammar books are widely available locally in Vietnam and/or if there is a teachers' library there that you can use.

Offhand I can't think of any decent comprehensive reference grammars from American publishers (although there are quite a few ranges of grammar practice books, such as Azar's, not that I'm particularly recommending hers by mentioning them!); and this isn't me trying to sound overtly patriotic (I'm a Brit), I'm simply stating a fact (of ESL, or rather, EFL, publishing).
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