Word sketches of descriptive modifiers in children's short stories for teacher training in teaching English as a foreign language

Abstract

.Stories have proved to be an important didactic resource in language teaching; therefore, teacher trainees are often encouraged to design story-based tasks. However, they may find difficulties in identifying the language typically found in children's stories. For this reason, the present paper aims at exploring a relevant feature of this genre, descriptive modifiers, in order to raise student teachers’ genre awareness and prompt them to use high-frequency words and phrases. In this corpus-based study, a number of key elements were first identified, then classified, and finally, their occurrences were analyzed to obtain patterns in their grammatical behavior and an inventory of their most common collocates. SketchEngine was used both to compile the corpus and to retrieve word sketches of each modifier. Gaining more insight into the language of stories can contribute to helping teacher trainees to perceive characteristic language in children-oriented text types and to develop their own storytelling abilities.S

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