The English Grammar Teaching Method by English on a Roll is a hands on way to teach the English language and grammar. It written for the classroom, but has adaptations to be able to use it at home with your own children. Although, if you are a homeschool family, it also might be a fun addition to a co-op setting!
It is primarily designed as a teaching to for English as a second language (ESL) learners. It helps them to be able to form proper sentences.
It comes with a book with all the lessons clearly laid out and 40 cubes. The cubes have words on all sides, plus there are two that come blank. Stickers are provided so you can put whatever you want on the two blank cubes.
The cubes are organized by color. Pronouns are blue, question words are green, nouns, articles, and prepositions are dark blue, verbs are red, adverbs are orange, adjectives are purple, and punctuation and conjunction cubes are black.
The book lays out exactly what to do each day (for 36 lessons) with the cubes. Each day starts with you teaching the concepts (again… completely laid out in the book. You do not have to be a “teacher”). Then there are conversation games and written exercises (which you can make copies of if you are using it for a class).
There is very little prep for this program. You essentially just lolok at the lesson for the day and take out the cubes you will need for that lesson. You will also make any copies you need for the written work. That’s it.
For the teaching aspect, there is dialogue written in the book for you to follow. So you don’t have to reinvent the wheel. Just follow the script.
How My English Speaking Daughter Used It
My daughter can speak English. It is her first language. She doesn’t need English on a Roll to help her learn the language.
So, how did we use it?
I looked over the book and decided to skip using it for now. I felt like she would benefit more from using it as a “sentence maker”.
This is not necessarily how the author intended it to be used. However, the author definitely states that it can be adapted to how is best for you! :)
I’m glad we started out this way. It is basically serving as a pre-writing exercise for her. I gave her the cubes and told her to make some sentences. I told her they could be about anything she wanted. At first, the sentences were nonsense. She would show me and I would read it out loud and ask, “Does that make sense”. And, of course, she would then hear it for herself and realize it didn’t make sense.
Then, I made a few sentences to show her how it was done. She was starting to get it!
The first few successful sentences she made were:
How are you doing?
Are you doing good?
Yes, I am doing good.
She thought it was fun making the sentences. It was more of a game to her than “school”.
Guess what, though! She was learning without realizing it.
In order for her to find the “doing” cube, she had to figure out which color it would be (red, because it’s a verb). She then had to find it. Now, if “doing” wasn’t on top of the cube, she had to think a little harder. Hmmmm…. I see “does”… if I turn the cube a couple of times… yep, there’s “doing”!
The same procedure had to be done for each of the words. “Am” and “Are” were on the same cube, because they are both forms of the verb “be”.
I love this kind of learning! The kind where the child just thinks they’re playing. :)
Grammar is usually not a fun subject for kids. I can definitely see us using this throughout the school year to enhance her grammar lessons and help them be a little less boring.
English on a Roll for the ESL teacher
This curriculum is a no-brainer for anyone that is teaching English as a second language. It will be an invaluable tool to help your students learn how different sentences can be structured.
I teach English as a second language online. I thought this might be a good tool for me to use, but it didn’t quite work like I anticipated. The whole idea behind it is that it is a hand-on product for ESL learners. That, of course, is not the case if your student is learning online. :)
I still love it for use with my own daughter to help her with sentence building, though.
Check out this demo video to help you understand how it can be used!
How do you think you could see yourself using English on a Roll?