Steven Pinker gives us a fascinating lecture on language and the brain. While this lecture is not about grammar, our issue topic this month, the Chomskyan Pinker is makes it impossible for him not to touch on grammar throughout. It is a long lecture, but one every language teacher should listen to.
Curtis Kelly introduces the issue topic by pondering our love-hate relationship with it. Then, Stephen M. Ryan starts the Think Tank off by defining grammar as part of predictive processing, the mind-opening theme of last month’s issue. Award-winning textbook developer, Michael Rost, tells us what he learned about teaching grammar from Rod Ellis, back when Mike was his editor. Mike also gives us some practical ideas for teaching grammar, with more coming in the next two articles: Carl Eldridge explains how students can get a better grasp of grammar through visualization, and Rachel Paling encourages us to replace our usual teaching practices with a richer, more brain-friendly, coaching approach. Finally, Robert Taferner takes us deep into grammar acquisition by contemplating how he came to understand it through Processability Theory, a theory that proposes grammar is acquired in stages.
In the PLUS section, David Stepanczuk tells us how the Perpetual Anxiety Cycle caused by Emergency Remote Teaching almost got him, but rumors of a foreigner running around Osaka with a Fuji camera suggests that he is still with us.