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Messages - Rafiz Uddin

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Good one.

ELT / Re: ELT in Bangladesh: New method required
« on: August 01, 2019, 11:57:36 AM »
Thanks for sharing.

ELT / Grammar, its history & development
« on: August 01, 2019, 11:54:00 AM »

In linguistics, grammar is the set of structural rules that governs the composition of clauses, phrases and words in any given natural language. The term refers also to the study of such rules, and this field includes morphology, syntax, and phonology, often complemented by phonetics, semantics, and pragmatics. Linguists do not normally use the term to refer to orthographical rules, although usage books and style guides that call themselves grammars may also refer to spelling and punctuation.

The term grammar is often used by non-linguists with a very broad meaning. As Jeremy Butterfield puts it: "Grammar is often a generic way of referring to any aspect of English that people object to." However, linguists use it in a much more specific sense. Speakers of a language have in their heads a set of rules for using that language. This is a grammar, and the vast majority of the information in it is acquired—at least in the case of one's native language—not by conscious study or instruction, but by observing other speakers; much of this work is done during infancy. Learning a language later in life usually involves a greater degree of explicit instruction.

The term "grammar" can also be used to describe the rules that govern the linguistic behaviour of a group of speakers. The term "English grammar", therefore, may have several meanings. It may refer to the whole of English grammar—that is, to the grammars of all the speakers of the language—in which case, the term encompasses a great deal of variation.

Alternatively, it may refer only to what is common to the grammars of all, or of the vast majority of English speakers (such as subject–verb–object word order in simple declarative sentences). Or it may refer to the rules of a particular, relatively well-defined variety of English (such as Standard English).

"An English grammar" is a specific description, study or analysis of such rules. A reference book describing the grammar of a language is called a "reference grammar" or simply "a grammar." A fully explicit grammar that exhaustively describes the grammatical constructions of a language is called a descriptive grammar. This kind of linguistic description contrasts with linguistic prescription, an attempt to discourage or suppress some grammatical constructions, while promoting others. For example, preposition stranding occurs widely in Germanic languages and has a long history in English. John Dryden, however, objected to it (without explanation), leading other English speakers to avoid the construction and discourage its use.

The word grammar derives from Greek γραμματικ τέχνη (grammatikē ὴ technē), which means "art of letters", from γράμμα (gramma), "letter", itself from γράφειν (graphein), "to draw, to write".

The first systematic grammars originated in Iron Age India, with Yaska (6th century BC), Pāṇini (4th century BC) and his commentators Pingala (c. 200 BC), Katyayana, and Patanjali (2nd century BC). In the West, grammar emerged as a discipline in Hellenism from the 3rd century BC forward with authors like Rhyanus and Aristarchus of Samothrace, the oldest extant work being the Art of Grammar (Τέχνη Γραμματική), attributed to Dionysius Thrax (c. 100 BC). Latin grammar developed by following Greek models from the 1st century BC, due to the work of authors such as Orbilius Pupillus, Remmius Palaemon, Marcus Valerius Probus, Verrius Flaccus, and Aemilius Asper.

Tolkāppiyam is the earliest Tamil grammar; it has been dated variously between 1st CE and 10th CE. A grammar of Irish originated in the 7th century with the Auraicept na nÉces. Arabic grammar emerged with Abu al-Aswad al-Du'ali from the 7th century who in-turn was taught the discipline by Ali ibn Abi Talib, the fourth historical caliph of Islam.

The first treatises on Hebrew grammar appeared in the High Middle Ages, in the context of Mishnah (exegesis of the Hebrew Bible). The Karaite tradition originated in Abbasid Baghdad. The Diqduq (10th century) is one of the earliest grammatical commentaries on the Hebrew Bible.[8] Ibn Barun in the 12th century compares the Hebrew language with Arabic in the Islamic grammatical tradition.[9]

Belonging to the trivium of the seven liberal arts, grammar was taught as a core discipline throughout the Middle Ages, following the influence of authors from Late Antiquity, such as Priscian. Treatment of vernaculars began gradually during the High Middle Ages, with isolated works such as the First Grammatical Treatise, but became influential only in the Renaissance and Baroque periods. In 1486, Antonio de Nebrija published Las introduciones Latinas contrapuesto el romance al Latin, and the first Spanish grammar, Gramática de la lengua castellana, in 1492. During the 16th-century Italian Renaissance, the Questione della lingua was the discussion on the status and ideal form of the Italian language, initiated by Dante's de vulgari eloquentia (Pietro Bembo, Prose della volgar lingua Venice 1525). The first grammar of Slovene language was written in 1584 by Adam Bohorič.

Grammars of non-European languages began to be compiled for the purposes of evangelization and Bible translation from the 16th century onward, such as Grammatica o Arte de la Lengua General de los Indios de los Reynos del Perú (1560), and a Quechua grammar by Fray Domingo de Santo Tomás.

In 1643 there appeared Ivan Uzhevych's Grammatica sclavonica and, in 1762, the Short Introduction to English Grammar of Robert Lowth was also published. The Grammatisch- Kritisches Wörterbuch der hochdeutschen Mundart, a High German grammar in five volumes by Johann Christoph Adelung, appeared as early as 1774. From the latter part of the 18th century, grammar came to be understood as a subfield of the emerging discipline of modern linguistics. The Serbian grammar by Vuk Stefanović Karadžić arrived in 1814, while the Deutsche Grammatik of the Brothers Grimm was first published in 1818. The Comparative Grammar of Franz Bopp, the starting point of modern comparative linguistics, came out in 1833.

Development of grammars
Grammars evolve through usage and also due to separations of the human population. With the advent of written representations, formal rules about language usage tend to appear also. Formal grammars are codifications of usage that are developed by repeated documentation over time, and by observation as well. As the rules become established and developed, the prescriptive concept of grammatical correctness can arise. This often creates a discrepancy between contemporary usage and that which has been accepted, over time, as being correct. Linguists tend to view prescriptive grammars as having little justification beyond their authors' aesthetic tastes, although style guides may give useful advice about standard language employment, based on descriptions of usage in contemporary writings of the same language. Linguistic prescriptions also form part of the explanation for variation in speech, particularly variation in the speech of an individual speaker (an explanation, for example, for why some people say "I didn't do nothing", some say "I didn't do anything", and some say one or the other depending on social context).

The formal study of grammar is an important part of education for children from a young age through advanced learning, though the rules taught in schools are not a "grammar" in the sense most linguists use the term, particularly as they are often prescriptive rather than descriptive.

Constructed languages (also called planned languages or conlangs) are more common in the modern day. Many have been designed to aid human communication (for example, naturalistic Interlingua, schematic Esperanto, and the highly logic-compatible artificial language Lojban). Each of these languages has its own grammar. Syntax refers to linguistic structure above the word level (e.g. how sentences are formed)—though without taking into account intonation, which is the domain of phonology. Morphology, by contrast, refers to structure at and below the word level (e.g. how compound words are formed), but above the level of individual sounds, which, like intonation, are in the domain of phonology.

No clear line can be drawn, however, between syntax and morphology. Analytic languages use syntax to convey information that is encoded via inflection in synthetic languages. In other words, word order is not significant and morphology is highly significant in a purely synthetic language, whereas morphology is not significant and syntax is highly significant in an analytic language. Chinese and Afrikaans, for example, are highly analytic, and meaning is therefore very context-dependent. (Both do have some inflections, and have had more in the past; thus, they are becoming even less synthetic and more "purely" analytic over time.) Latin, which is highly synthetic, uses affixes and inflections to convey the same information that Chinese does with syntax. Because Latin words are quite (though not completely) self-contained, an intelligible Latin sentence can be made from elements that are placed in a largely arbitrary order. Latin has a complex affixation and simple syntax, while Chinese has the opposite.

Grammar frameworks
Various "grammar frameworks" have been developed in theoretical linguistics since the mid-20th century, in particular under the influence of the idea of a "universal grammar" in the United States. Of these, the main divisions are:
Transformational grammar (TG).Systemic functional grammar (SFG) Principles and Parameters Theory (P&P).Lexical-functional Grammar (LFG) Generalized Phrase Structure Grammar (GPSG).Head-Driven Phrase Structure Grammar (HPSG).Dependency grammars (DG).Role and reference grammar (RRG)

Prescriptive grammar is taught in primary school (elementary school). The term "grammar school" historically refers to a school teaching Latin grammar to future Roman citizens, orators, and, later, Catholic priests. In its earliest form, "grammar school" referred to a school that taught students to read, scan, interpret, and declaim Greek and Latin poets (including Homer, Virgil, Euripides, Ennius, and others). These should not be confused with the related, albeit distinct, modern British grammar schools.

A standard language is a particular dialect of a language that is promoted above other dialects in writing, education, and broadly speaking in the public sphere; it contrasts with vernacular dialects, which may be the objects of study in descriptive grammar but which are rarely taught prescriptively. The standardized "first language" taught in primary education may be subject to political controversy, since it establishes a standard defining nationality or ethnicity.

Recently, efforts have begun to update grammar instruction in primary and secondary education. The primary focus has been to prevent the use of outdated prescriptive rules in favor of more accurate descriptive ones and to change perceptions about relative "correctness" of standard forms in comparison to non standard dialects.

The pre-eminence of Parisian French has reigned largely unchallenged throughout the history of modern French literature. Standard Italian is not based on the speech of the capital, Rome, but on the speech of Florence because of the influence Florentines had on early Italian literature. Similarly, standard Spanish is not based on the speech of Madrid, but on the one of educated speakers from more northerly areas like Castile and León. In Argentina and Uruguay the Spanish standard is based on the local dialects of Buenos Aires and Montevideo (Rioplatense Spanish). Portuguese has for now two official written standards, respectively Brazilian Portuguese and European Portuguese, but in a short term it will have a unified orthography.

The Serbian language is divided in a similar way; Serbia and the Republika Srpska use their own separate standards. The existence of a third standard is a matter of controversy, some consider Montenegrin as a separate language, and some think it's merely another variety of Serbian.

Norwegian has two standards, Bokmål and Nynorsk, the choice between which is subject to controversy: Each Norwegian municipality can declare one of the two its official language, or it can remain "language neutral". Nynorsk is endorsed by a minority of 27 percent of the municipalities. The main language used in primary schools normally follows the official language of its municipality, and is decided by referendum within the local school district. Standard German emerged out of the standardized chancellery use of High German in the 16th and 17th centuries. Until about 1800, it was almost entirely a written language, but now it is so widely spoken that most of the former German dialects are nearly extinct.

Standard Chinese has official status as the standard spoken form of the Chinese language in the People's Republic of China (PRC), the Republic of China (ROC) and the Republic of Singapore. Pronunciation of Standard Chinese is based on the Beijing dialect of
Mandarin Chinese, while grammar and syntax are based on modern vernacular written Chinese. Modern Standard Arabic is directly based on Classical Arabic, the language of the Qur'an. The Hindustani language has two standards, Hindi and Urdu. In the United States, the Society for the Promotion of Good Grammar designated March 4 as National Grammar Day in 2008.
[Adapted from "Introduction to Syntax" by Prof. Dr. Slavica Perovic]

English Grammar / Difference between British & American English
« on: March 25, 2019, 03:27:44 PM »
If you’re not a full time editor, you may be asking yourself what the differences between American and British English are. Well, Americans and the British clearly speak the same language, but there’s enough variation to create versions of the language with slightly different personalities and local flavor — or should that be flavour?

It’s difficult to make clear distinctions between US and UK accents when there is such a wide variety of accents within both the US and UK. A Texan and a New Yorker are both Americans, but have very different accents. The same goes for British accents in London, Manchester and Glasgow.

However, some very general distinctions can be made. Americans usually pronounce every “r” in a word, while the British tend to only pronounce the “r” when it’s the first letter of a word.
American English    British English
color    colour
behavior    behaviour
theater    theatre
meter    metre
organize    organise
traveled    travelled

American English    British English
apartment    flat
college    university
theater    theatre
vacation    holiday
chips    crisps
(french) fries    chips
the movies    the cinema
soda / pop / coke / soft drink    soft drink / fizzy drink
sneakers / tennis shoes    trainers
sweater    jumper
mailbox    postbox
band-aid    plaster
drugstore    chemist’s
soccer    football
cookie    biscuit


The differences below are only a general rule. American speech has influenced Britain via pop culture, and vice versa. Therefore, some prepositional differences are not as pronounced as they once were.
American English    British English
I’m going to a party on the weekend.    I’m going to a party at the weekend.
What are you doing on Christmas?    What are you doing at Christmas?
Monday through Friday.    Monday to Friday.
It’s different from/than the others.    It’s different from/to the others.

Past Simple vs Present Perfect

Americans tend to use the past simple when describing something that has recently occurred, while people in the UK are more likely to use the present perfect.
American English    British English
I ate too much.    I’ve eaten too much.
I went to the store.    I’ve been to the shop.
Did you get the newspaper?    Have you got the newspaper?

The past participle of get

In the UK, “gotten” as the past participle of “get” is considered archaic and was abandoned long ago in favor of “got.” However, in the US people still use “gotten” as the past participle.
American English    British English
get — got — gotten    get — got — got
I haven’t gotten any news about him.    I’ve not got any news about him.

Collective nouns: singular or plural?

In British English, a collective noun (like committee, government, team, etc.) can be either singular or plural, but more often tends toward plural, emphasizing the members of the group. Collective nouns in the US, by comparison, are always singular, emphasizing the group as one whole entity.
American English    British English
The government is doing everything it can during this crisis.    The government are doing everything they can during this crisis.
My team is winning.    My team are winning.
Regular or irregular verbs?

This is a subtle difference that can be easily overlooked in speech, but is much more apparent in written form. Many verbs that are irregular in the preterite in Britain (leapt, dreamt, burnt, learnt) have been made regular in America (leaped, dreamed, burned, learned).

As the most-spoken second language on the planet, English has to be flexible. After all, it’s not solely spoken in the countries we’ve detailed above. So whether you speak English like a Brit or like a ‘merkan, this should not be an obstacle when communicating with people on the opposite side of the pond, or anywhere else in the world for that matter.

This article is from:

English / Re: Motivating teachers
« on: September 24, 2018, 01:41:02 PM »
Thanks for sharing.

Dear Sir,
You can get some information from this write-up from the Daily Star as stated below:

"What we call Bangladeshi writing in English has come into being after the emergence of Bangladesh. Although the stream is very feeble, it exists. There is, however, no chronological list of the writers of this school. I have tried to make a rough outline which is, of course, subject to further modifications. The first generation of Bangladeshi writers in English includes a few poets. Razia Khan Amin came up with a couple of collections of poems. Her poetry books Argus Under Anaesthesia (1976) and Cruel April (1977) bear the stamp of her preeminence among English poets in Bangladesh. Farida Majid is another distinguished poet and literary translator. Her Take Me Home, Rickshaw (1974) is a collection of poems by contemporary Bangladeshi poets translated in English. She has edited an anthology of English poems titled Thursday Evening Anthology (1977).
Kaiser Haq is the most leading English language poet in Bangladesh. His poetic output is quite substantial. They are as follows: Starting Lines (1978)-Dacca; A Little Ado (1978)- Dacca ; A Happy Farewell (1994)-Dhaka; Black Orchid (1996)-London; The Logopathic Reviewer's Song (2002); Published in the Streets of Dhaka : Collected poems 19662006) (2008). A freedom fighter himself, Kaiser Haq is a consummate artist who has painted the contemporary Bangladeshi scene with powerful imaginative mind and artistic precision. His work bears all the hallmarks of good poetry. Feroz Ahmed-ud-din is another noted poet. Though not prolific, his poetry is marked by shortness and intensity. His Handful of Dust (1975) vividly portrays the loss of vision in contemporary life. Syed Najmuddin Hashim's collection of poems, Hopefully the Pomegranate, is a valuable addition to Bangladeshi English poetry. Hashem has drawn allusions and references from far-off European mythology and biblical anecdotes, and woven them into the local themes. Nuzhat Amin Mannan's Rhododendron Lane (2004) is enriched with creative imagery and distinctive style.
Rumana Siddique's Five Faces of Eve: Poems (2007) reflects the timeless experience of a woman symbolized by their biblical ancestor, Eve. Rumana's poems are a mix of the pleasures and pains of life. Nadeem Rahman's Politically Incorrect Poems (2004) is a collection of poems dealing with post-liberation war themes. His poetry is typified by highly individualistic attitude, sharp social sensibility, and keen political observation. Fakrul Alam's translation Jibanananda Das: Selected Poems (1999) is of great literary value. Apart from the poets identified, a number of enthusiastic poets are also writing good English poems. Syed Badrul Ahsan is one of them.
The realm of fiction in BWE hitherto is dominated by Adib Khan, a Bangladeshi diasporic author in Australia. He is a writer of real merit. His novels Seasonal Adjustments (1994) Solitude of Illusions (1996); The Storyteller (2000); Homecoming (2005); and Spiral Road (2007) win global acclaim and are mostly concerned with themes of self-identity, sense of belonging, migration, and social dislocation. His style is characterized by lucidity and sarcasm.
Tahmima Anam belongs to the group of writers who were born after the liberation of Bangladesh. Her novel A Golden Age (2007) is set in war-torn Bangladesh. As an English fictional work on the independence war (1971), Anam's novel must have a singular place in the history of Bangladeshi English literature. The storyteller Mahmud Rahman has appeared on the BWE scene with his debut publication Killing the Water (2010). It is a collection of a dozen short stories published by Penguin India and covers a wide range of themes ranging from the liberation war of Bangladesh to the racial violence against fresh immigrants in the USA. A galaxy of promising writers is trying their hands at writing short stories in English. Among others Khademul Islam, Kazi Anis Ahmed, Ahmede Hussain, Razia Sultana Khan, Shabnam Nadiya and Shahidul Alam deserve special mention.
Although Bangladeshi writing in English has a long way to go, it has a bright future too. We may be able to play at least a role similar to that of India. But how? The ongoing mode of BWE has to be liberated from the literary coterie, i.e., the small circle of writers, publishers, and their admirers. It has to be rescued from the narrow confines of academia and the English medium schools. English language newspapers and magazines should allow enough room for literary expression and fresh writings should be picked solely on merit. The King's/Queen's English can better be exploited by the conscious 'Calibans' of our country.''

Creative Writing / পথিক হেটে চলেছে
« on: September 24, 2018, 01:31:29 PM »
পথিক হেটে চলেছে।
পথের দুপাশে ফোটা ভাঁটফুল জিজ্ঞেস করে, জেনেছি কী যেন শিক্ষা অর্জন করেছ, ঠিক?
পথিক হেটে যায়।
পথের সামনে পড়ল এক কালকেউটে সাপ। পথিক হাতে লাঠি নিয়ে এগুলো।
সাপ বলে, আমি তোমায় মারতে আসিনি। জানতে চাইছি কেবল, কী শিখেছ?
পথিক লাজাওয়াব। সাপ গর্তে লুকোয়।
এরপর আবারো হেটে চলে পথিক।
উপরে আকাশ আর নিচে মাটি সমস্বরে জিজ্ঞাসে, বলো না পথিক, শিখেছ কী?
পথিক এবার আকাশের দিকে তাকায়। একবার খুঁজে দেখে চারপাশে। না, কেউ নেই। এবার তাকালো নিচে। পথের মাঝে মাটির স্তরে ভিন্নতা আছে। কোথাও উঁচু, নিচু কোথাও। একই মাটির কতই ধরন! উঁচু মাটি নিচু মাটির দিকে তাচ্ছিল্য করছে কিনা সে শুনছে কান পেতে। না।
আর নিচু মাটিও নিজের ব্যাপারে হীনমন্যতায় ভুগছে কিনা তাও ঠাউর করা যাচ্ছে না।
আচমকা আকাশ বাতাস ধ্বনিত করে পথিক ডেকে ওঠে- অতটুকু পথ হেটে আমি শিখেছি ঠকে যায় কারা- 'অপবাদদাতারা ঠকে যায়। ঠকবাজরা ঠকে যায়। নিজেকে নিয়ে বড়াইকারীরা ঠকে যায়। ঠকে যায় মিথ্যুকরা। ঠকে যায় হিংসুকরা। ঠকে যায় খায়েশের অনুসারীরা।'

Creative Writing / Exploring the Road Unknown
« on: September 24, 2018, 01:30:35 PM »
When the sun was playing its hottest heat-game
And the drops of sweat were blinking in my name,
I suddenly realized that the other side of this road is unknown
Nor trod I on it as before I'd trod on whatever road was shown
That bicycle was a pretty good companion
Who was nodding himself for me to ride on

And I did not wait for the reactions waiting
Who'll say what and who'll keep debating

The man from the wood said to turn to the trend
Saying it would take time for me to reach the end
He was not to be listened
Nor had I poise to intend
I worked on my pedals and I rose the gear
In a few minutes I learned the end was near

English / Re: Two Poems
« on: September 24, 2018, 01:29:33 PM »

Speaking Skill / Re: 10 Tips to stay focused in an interview
« on: September 24, 2018, 01:29:18 PM »
Thanks for presenting the important tips madam.

Speaking Skill / Re: 4 Basic Types of Speeches
« on: September 24, 2018, 01:27:59 PM »
Really helpful for the teachers.

Speaking Skill / Re: Extempore Speech Topics
« on: September 24, 2018, 01:27:21 PM »
We can make cue cards based on the topics. Thank you madam.

Speaking Skill / Re: 12 fun speaking games for language learners
« on: September 24, 2018, 01:25:16 PM »
I was sort of searching for them. Thanks for presenting.

Speaking Skill / Re: 13 Ideas for ESL Speaking Activities for Adults
« on: September 24, 2018, 01:24:13 PM »
Interesting to know about.

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