As a self-confessed grammar geek, it pains me to read some of the posts on my Facebook page : ‘I’m always loosing my keys’ or ‘He don’t love me no more’. Grrrr! But these mistakes are made by native speakers (I know I just started a sentence with ‘but’) should they really be considered a mistake if everyone is doing it?
Should we be correcting students who say ‘It were well good’ and ‘we was at the shops’ when this language is used every day by native speakers and is considered part of the dialect of Multicultural London English (MLE)? Should we correct students for their lack of adverbs and present perfect when they are learning English through American films and TV?
The definition of Standard English refers to whatever form of the English language is accepted as a national norm in any English-speaking country. How do we define Standard English today when social media saturates users from around the world with varying dialects, sms language and misspellings?
Linguist Geoffery Pullman states that ‘The rules of language are defined by how people use that language’, so does that mean anything goes?
Over to you, what do you think? What should we be correcting in the ESL classroom?
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