Reculiarites of Teaching English

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Peculiarities of Teaching English

Table of Contents

Introduction… … 3

Chapter I. Articles… …5

1.1 Countable and uncountable nouns… 6

1.2 The definite article: «the»… 7

1.3 The indefinite article: «a/an»… 9

1.4 The zero article… 10

Chapter II. Different ways of teaching articles… …12

2.1 Ways of presenting articles… 12

2.2 Memory techniques… …18

2.3 Further activities for practicing articles… 19

2.4 Testing using articles… 21

Conclusions… … …25

Summary… 27

List of References… …28


This paper deals with two types of articles definite (the) and indefinite (a/an), the use of which depends mainly on whether you are referring to any member of a group, or to a specific member of a group. It focuses on different rules of using definite, indefinite and zero articles and peculiarities of teaching articles.

In English, there are two main ways in which you can use a noun group. You can use it to refer to someone or something, knowing that the person you are speaking to understands which person or thing you are talking about. This can be called the specific way of referring to someone or something.

Alternatively, you can use a noun group to refer to someone or something of a particular type, without saying which person or thing you mean. This can be called the general way of referring to someone or something.

In order to distinguish between these two ways of using a noun group, you use a special class of words called determiners. You put them at the beginning of a noun group.

The articles a/an and the belong to a group of words called «determiners». The correct use of the articles is one of the most difficult points in English grammar.

The problem of using and teaching articles is of great importance for many reasons. First, the correct use of articles offers difficulties and remains the area of linguistic theory where we different approaches with some important disputable points open to thought and discussion. Second, the pupils' ability in the correct use of articles depends mainly on their speaking skills and vocabulary, that’s why it is necessary for teachers to be better informed of the ways of presentation and practicing using articles.

The objective of the paper is definite and indefinite articles and peculiarities of teaching articles.

The subject of the paper is different ways of using articles; the complex of exercises and activities applies to teaching articles.

In accordance with the objectives the following tasks are set:

1) to define and analyze the main ways of using definite, indefinite and zero articles;

2) to single out the main ways of teaching articles;

3) to analyze the importance of teaching articles.

The piece of research was carried out on the material of different authors, dictionaries and Internet.

There is much very useful information about articles in several grammar books, such as Longman English Grammar by L.G. Alexander, Using English Grammar: meaning and form by Edward Woods, Nicole McLeod, A Communicative Grammar by Geoffrey Leech and Jan Startvick.

The structure of the work is done in accordance with the general conceptual framework adopted. Part 1 of the paper dwells upon different ways of using articles. Part 2 shows different ways and importance of teaching articles. Conclusions contain the description of the major results of the research.

Chapter 1


We use a number of words in front of common nouns (or adjective + common noun) which we call determiners because they affect (or determine) the meaning of the noun. Determiners make it clear, for example which particular thing (s) we are referring to or how much of a substance we are talking about. Singular countable nouns must normally have a determiner in front of them. There are two classes of determiners.

Definite and indefinite articles belong to the class, which helps us to classify or identify the object.

The correct use of the articles (a/an and the) is one of the most difficult points in English grammar. In most European languages there are rules about when to use (or not to use) indefinite and definite articles. These rules generally depend on the gender of the noun and on whether a word is singular or plural. In English, gender does not affect our choice, but whether a word is singular or plural may do so. Fortunately, however, most mistakes in the use of the articles do not matter too much. Even if we leave all the articles out of a sentence, it is usually possible to understand it.

A/an is called the «indefinite article». The is called the «definite article». We often use no article at all in English. This non-use of the article is so important that we give it a name the zero article. Articles are used to show whether we are referring to things that are known both to the speaker/writer and to the listener/reader («definite») or that are not known to them both («indefinite»). Articles can also show whether we are talking about things in general or particular things.

The use of articles is complicated, because it depends on three different things.

First of all, it makes a difference what kind of noun we are using. Articles are not used in the same way with singular countable nouns (like cat, bridge), with plural countable nouns (like cats, bridges), and with uncountable nouns (like water, rice).

Secondly, we use articles in one way if we are talking about things in general (for example Englishmen, or the guitar, or life in general, or whisky), and we use them in a different way when we are talking about particular examples of these things (for example, an Englishman, or a guitar that we want to buy, or the life of Beethoven).

Thirdly, when we are talking about particular examples, it depends whether these are definite or indefinite. If they are definite we normally use the. If we are talking about indefinite things we use articles differently (a or no article).

1.1 Countable and uncountable nouns

Before we look at articles in more detail, the first idea that needs to be understood is the concept of countable and uncountable nouns.

The distinction between countable and uncountable nouns must be clearly understood because it affects our choice of article.

Countable nouns are words like cat, bridge, house, idea. We can count them (one cat, two houses, three ideas), so they can have plurals. The indefinite article a/an really means one, so we can use it with singular countable nouns (a house, an idea), but not with plurals.

We live in a small house.

I’ve got an idea.

I’m afraid of spiders. (Not: …a spiders.)

She was wearing blue trousers. (Not: … a blue trousers.)

Uncountable nouns are words like water, rice, energy, luck. These are things that we can divide (a drop of water, a bowl of rice, a piece of luck), but not count. You cannot say one water, two waters, etc. These words do not have plurals. The indefinite article a/an cannot be used with uncountable words.

It’s nice weather. (Not: …a nice weather).

Water is made of hydrogen and oxygen. (Not: A water …).

A lot of words can be bath countable and uncountable, with different meanings or uses (e.g. iron, an iron; coffee, a coffee). Some plural words have no singular (e.g. trousers, scissors).

A very important point: singular countable nouns must always have an article (or another determiner like my, this). We can say a cat, the cat, this cat, my cat, but not cat. Do not leave out the article before the names of professions. [5: 237; 8: 55]

1.2 The definite article: «the»

The is the commonest specific determiner; it is sometimes called the definite article. The usually means something like «you know which one (s) I mean». We use the before a noun when our listener/reader knows (or can work out) which particular person (s), thing (s) etc. we are talking about.


Did you lock the car? (The listener knows very well which car is meant).

We hired a car to go to Scotland. (The listener does not know which one).

The listener/reader may know which one (s) we mean because:

a) we have mentioned it/them before

She’s got two children: a boy and a girl. The boy’s fourteen and the girl’s eight.

«So what did you do then?» «Gave the money straight back to the policeman. «

The speaker uses the because the listener has already heard about the money and the policeman.

b) we say which one (s) we mean

Could you close the door? (Only one door is open).

Ann’s in the kitchen.

Did you enjoy the party?

What’s the time? [12: 55]

Basic uses of «the»

When using the, we must always bear in mind two basic facts:

1. The normally has a definite reference (a person or the thing referred to is assumed to be known to the speaker or reader).

2. The can combine with singular countable, plural countable and uncountable nouns (which are always singular).

These two facts underlie all uses of the. Some of the most important of these uses are discussed in the sections that follow.

· The use of «the» in time sequences

e.g. the beginning, the middle, the end, the first, the last, the next, the present, the past, the future.

· The use of «the» with parts of the day

e.g. in the morning, in the afternoon, in the evening, etc.

· The use of «the» with the seasons


· The use of «the» in fixed time expressions

All the while, at the moment, for the time being, in the end, etc.

· We often use «the» with «unique items»

— Historical events: the French Revolution, the Victorian age.

— Ships: the Canberra, the Titanic.

— Political parties: the Conservative Party, the Labour Party.

— Public bodies: the Army, the Police.

— Beliefs: the angels, the saints, the gods.

· We usually use the with superlatives because there is normally only one best, biggest etc individual or group. For the same reason, we usually use the with first, next, last, same and only.

· We normally use the definite article in expressions like play the guitar, learn the piano. The is often omitted in referenced to jazz and rock:

This is a 1979 recording with Ellison on bass guitar.

Fixed phrases with the … the (the sooner the better) and fixed expressions (do the shopping, make the bed)

· Measurement. Note the use of the in measuring expressions beginning with by.

Do you sell eggs by the kilo or by the dozen?

She drinks cough medicine by the liter. [4: 7; 10: 53]

1.3 The indefinite article: «a/an»

In contrast to the, an indefinite article is use when a reference cannot be regarded as uniquely identifiable from the shared knowledge of speaker. The indefinite article is commonly associated with «first mention» of an item which anaphoric the would be used in subsequent mention:

Her house was burgled and she lost a camera, a radio, and a purse — though fortunately the purse contained very little money and the camera was insured.

There is no difference in meaning between a and an. When using a/an we must always bear in mind the following facts:

1. A/an has an indefinite meaning, (the person, animal or thing referred to may be not known to the listener or reader, so a/an has the sense of any or I cannot tell you which, or it doesn’t matter which).

My brother’s going out with a French girl.

(The listener does not know which particular French girl it is.)

She lives in a nice big house.

Could you lend me a pen?

2. We can also use a/an to talk about any one member of a class.

She is a doctor.

3. We can use a/an after a copular verb or as to classify people and things to say what class, group or type they belong to.

She’s an architect.

I’m looking forward to being a grandmother.

«What's that noise?» «I think it’s a helicopter. «

He decided to become an engineer.

He remained a bachelor all his life.

Don’t use your plate as an ashtray.

4. A/an can combine only with a singular countable noun. [2: 42; 6: 157]

1.4 The zero article

The use of nouns on their own without an article is so fundamental in English that we should not regard this merely as «the omission of the article». We should think of the non-use of the article as something positive and give it a name the zero articles which is usually given the symbol O.

Basic uses of the zero article

We use the zero article before three types of nouns:

1. Plural countable nouns.

Museums are closed on Monday.

Italians make delicious ice-cream.

Trees don’t grow in the Antarctic.

2. Uncountable nouns (always singular).

Water must be pure if it is to be drunk.

Red is my favourite colour.

Smoking is bad for the health.

3. Proper nouns.

Also we should bear in mind the following rules of using the zero article:

· Zero article for days, months, seasons and holidays

Mondays are always difficult.

June is my favourite month.

Spring is a lovely season.

· Zero article for academic subjects and related topics

Art, Biology, Chemistry, Geography, History.

English is a difficult language to learn well.

· Zero article for times of the day and night. Combinations are common with at, by, after, before:

At dawn/daybreak, at sunset/sunrise, by day/night.

We got up at dawn to climb to the summit.

· Zero article for meals

Breakfast, lunch, dinner, supper

· Zero article in fixed phrases

Arm in arm, come to light, face to face, from top to bottom, hand in hand, keep in mind, make friends, make fun of. [12: 60; 13: 47]

Chapter 2

Different Ways of Teaching Articles

Articles are a problem for students of English because of their meaning and grammar. The correct use of the article is one of the most difficult points in English grammar. Students must understand the main difference between definite and indefinite article. The usually means something like ``you know which one (s) I mean". We use the before a noun when our listener /reader knows (or can work out) which particular person (s), thing (s) we are talking about. In contrast to the, an indefinite article is used when a reference cannot be regarded as uniquely identifiable from the shared knowledge of speaker. The indefinite article is commonly associated with ``first mention'' of an item with which anaphoric the would be used in subsequent mention. Teaching articles should be based on such methodological principles as a conscious approach to forming and developing the skill of using articles. Pupils learn to use articles in the word-combinations, sentences in the target languages more successfully if they understand what they write, read or hear. Most grammar cannot be learnt in passing but has to be studied and thoroughly practiced before students can produce it confidently and accurately in new contexts. [7: 54]

2.1 Ways of presenting articles

In the process of teaching English, teachers should pay special attention to countable and uncountable nouns. The distinction between countable and uncountable nouns must be clearly understood because it affects our choice of articles.

Countable nouns are words like cat, bridge, house, idea. We can count them (one cat, two houses, three ideas), so they can have plurals. The indefinite article a/an really means one, so we can use it with singular countable nouns (a house, an idea), but not with plurals.

We live in a small house.

I’ve got an idea.

I’m afraid of spiders.

She was wearing blue trousers.

Uncountable nouns are words like water, rice, energy, luck. These are things that we can divide (a drop of water, a bowl of rice, a piece of luck), but not count. You cannot say one water, two waters, etc. These words do not have plurals. The indefinite article a/an cannot be used with uncountable words.

It’s nice weather. (Not: … a nice weather.)

Water is made of hydrogen and oxygen. (Not: A water…)

A lot of words can be both countable and uncountable, with different meanings or uses (e.g. iron, an iron; coffee, a coffee). Some plural words have no singular (e.g. trousers, scissors).

Putting it in another way, we can use:

a/an or the +singular countable: a hat — the hat,

the or zero + plural countable: the hats — hats,

the or zero + uncountable: the water — water.

A very important point: singular countable nouns must always have an article (or another determiner like my, this). We can say a cat, the cat, this cat, my cat, but not cat. Do not leave out the article before the names of professions.

Alice is studying to be a doctor. (Not: …to be doctor).

In order to show the difference in using definite and indefinite articles with countable and uncountable nouns I use pictures and tables (see Appendix 1). There is a great number of exercises which can help students to understand the difference between countable and uncountable nouns. For example:

1. Which of the underlined parts of these sentences is right?

Margaret has got very long hair / hairs.

We had a very good weather / very good weather when we were on holidays.

Sorry I’m late. I had trouble / troubles with the car this morning.

I want something to read. I’m going to buy a / some paper.

I want to write some letters. I need a / some writing paper.

Bad news don’t / doesn’t make people happy.

I had to buy a / some bread because I wanted to make some sandwiches.

2. Complete the sentences with the correct form, singular or plural, of the given nouns. When necessary, choose word in parentheses in some of the sentences.

chair I bought some…

furniture I bought some…

fruit There (is, are) a lot of … on the table.

vegetable There (is, are) a lot of … on the table.

dress Mary has a lot of… in her closet.

grammar I know a lot of …

word I’m learning a lot of new…

2. Add final -s/ -es if possible.

1. I’m learning a lot of grammar…

2. We’re studying count and noncount noun…

3. Olga knows several language…

4. Olga has learned a lot of English…

5. Sara doesn’t like to wear makeup…

6. Colorado has high mountain…

7. The streets are full of automobile…

8. I have some important fact… for you.

9. A circle… has 360 degree…

Such types of exercises help students to understand the difference between countable and uncountable nouns.

The importance of teaching articles is obvious. It is necessary for teachers to be better informed how present and practice grammar and articles.

There exist different ways of presenting articles. At the beginning pupils must realize when should we use an indefinite article and when should we use a definite article? That’s why they have to remember the first rule:

Indefinite article is used for previously unknown nouns that are being introduced into a dialogue or story and definite article is used for nouns that have already been introduced (or are already known).

For example:

I saw a cat. The cat was sitting on a fence. The fence was painted brown. The cat jumped off the fence when it saw a mouse. The mouse ran into a hole when it saw the cat so the cat didn’t catch the mouse.

In this example, the nouns `cat', `fence', and `mouse' take an indefinite article, but only when they are introduced for the first time. After they are introduced, we use the definite article in every instance. This pattern, or rule, covers a lot of basic instances of concrete nouns, especially in story telling. This rule can extend over long periods of time and interrupted dialogue so that I can ask you to buy a pen and then several hours later I can ask you if you bought the pen.

Of course, this rule cannot be taught at the single sentence level since it requires a sentence to introduce the noun and a sentence to talk about the noun that has previously been introduced.

One exercise that I find useful is to have students fill in the articles for simple stories where several characters and objects are introduced into the story in succession. Every time a new character (knight, cat, ogre, mouse) or a new object (fence, bridge, castle) is introduced into the story the indefinite article is used and thereafter the definite article is used as per the basic rule.

Another good exercise that emphasizes this use of the basic rule is to have a series of flashcards with people or animals doing something and ask the students to describe what they see:

I see a monkey. The monkey is playing the drums.

I see a cat. The cat is swimming.

The pattern can be varied to suit other language needs:

There is a cat. The cat is swimming.

Some other possible ideas for using flashcards like these are:

(a) Describing colours: I see a cat. The cat is black.

(b) Describing clothes: There is a girl and a boy. The girl is wearing a dress and the boy is wearing a shirt and jeans.

© Describing actions: I see a knight. The knight is fighting an ogre.

(d) Describing settings of a story: Once upon a time, there was a princess. The princess lived in a castle.

If the teacher has to teach the use of articles, then this is the place to begin. This is the basic rule for using articles. In fact, I often tell pupils that this is the only rule, but there are many exceptions. The problem is that there are so many exceptions that you could spend an inordinate amount of time going over these exceptions. In the end, pupils would not be able to internalize these rules anyways.

Another important rule is when something is unique or, in other words, there is only one of that objects. In this case, the definite article is used. The sun, the president, the queen of England, the capital city, and the moon are all examples. This is especially true for objects that are well-known by many or most people, but it is true even when the hearer may not know the object:

A: Who’s he?

B: He’s the president of Korea. She’s the CFO. He’s the mayor.

This can be contrasted with:

A: Who’s she?

B: She’s a member of parliament. She’s an accountant. He’s an alderman.

This uniqueness can come by association:

A car crashed into a tree. The driver was seriously injured.

Once we established (introduced) the car, there could only be one driver so «driver» was unique at the time of introduction and we use the driver instead of a driver. We could have rewritten this so that driver was not unique (and the car was) when it was introduced:

A driver was seriously injured when the car he was driving crashed.

A driver can only be driving one car at a time so `car' is unique in this instance once driver was introduced.

This exception applies to superlatives (which are usually unique in occupying the extreme position or quality): the best place, the worst thing, the fastest runner, the tallest mountain, the most. This can be contrasted with comparatives such as a better mouse trap where several better mouse traps are possible.

This exception also applies to ordering (ordinal numbers used as adjectives) where it is presumed that the ordering is unique: the second time, the third example, the fourth person to call. In other words, once you place an order on objects they hold a unique position in that order.

This exception applies to named things (which through naming become unique):

The Rocky Mountains. (a mountain range)

The New York Islanders. (a sports team)

The Amazon River. (a river in South America)

The Pacific Ocean (An ocean)

The Steelworkers Union (an organization)

The Great Plains (a geographic locality)

The Washington Monument (a statue)

The Number Four Bus

However, this application is imperfect as some things such as named lakes and islands take no articles (Buttle Lake, Skull Island) except in plural instances (the Great Lakes, the Galapagos islands).

This exception applies to famous people who become unique in their fame:

A: I saw Nicole Kidman yesterday.

B: Nicole Kidman, the actor? (There is only one famous Nicole Kidman)

Another way of presenting articles is by giving the rules of using them in the mother tongue. Then the pupils practice applying the rule first orally and after that in written form.

Written texts are often one of the major sources through which language learners meet new vocabulary, grammar and articles in particular, so it is only logical that they should be used extensively in classroom teaching. They have the great advantage.

As the example the teacher may use different texts. Such as:

«There is no city quite like New York. It is known as «The City That Never Sleeps» and is the biggest commercial and cultural center in the world. Manhattan — the heart of the city — is only one of the five boroughs in this city. There are thousands of things to do and places to visit for tourists. The most famous landmark must be The Statue of Liberty — a symbol of freedom.

You can relax in Central Park, which is larger than Monaco! New York really does have something for everyone. «[11: 76]

2.2 Memory techniques.

The learners are said to forget about 50 per cent of the information received after the presentation. That is why there are some special techniques which help the teacher to promote more effective learning. In the process of teaching articles I use different tables, schemes which can help students to remember this theme better. I suggest using the following exercises:

a) a phrase scheme

to school the cinema

to go to bed to go to the theatre

home the hospital

The teacher asks the pupils to learn these examples by heart. This will help to understand the difference between using definite and zero articles.

b) a phrase fork


to travel by car


c) a tree diagram

to be

at in

school home … bed hospital …

The dotted lines mean that the learners can add more words to the tree as they meet them.

2.3 Further activities for practicing article.

After explaining the main rules of using articles and showing the examples it is easy for pupils to understand the correct use definite and indefinite articles. First of all, it is suggested that the teacher should use dialogues for discussion with different articles (see Appendix 2). The pupils must learn the rules and discuss speakers' use of articles.

After that pupils can easily cope with different exercises. The following exercises are presented in an order of increasing difficulty. In the first exercises the pupils complete a sentence by choosing the correct articles from the suggested.

Add the or no article. This exercise helps the teacher to check students' use of articles and their understanding of countable and uncountable nouns.

Please pass me … butter.

… butter is a dairy product.

John, where’s … milk? It is in … refrigerator or on … table?

… milk come from cows and goats.

Do you like … weather in this city?

… air is free.

… air is humid today.

Later they may be asked to complete sentences without any cues. They pick from the sentence patterns and the vocabulary they have studied the forms that best complete the sentence.

What are these things? Try and find out if you don’t know.

a cauliflower? It’s …

a pigeon? It …

a skyscraper? …

Earth? Mars? Venus? Jupiter? They …

the Rhine? the Nile? the Mississippi…

Give answers to the questions.

A friend of yours is in hospital. Where would you go to visit him? …

A friend of yours is in prison. Where would you go to visit him? …

A friend of yours is at church. If you wanted to meet him immediately after the service, where would you go…

It is understood, of course, that the pupil is not expected to rack his brains for something to say even in the simplest of exercises. Suggestions for answers should be implicit in the context or when necessary should be made overly by the teacher.

Teachers should pay their attention to such activity as asking questions. There are several reasons why questions are important: they stimulate and maintain pupils' interest; they encourage pupils to think and focus on the content of the lesson; they enable teachers to check pupils' understanding; the questions helps the pupil both with the words and with pattern required for the answer.

Many textbooks and methodology manuals writers argued that games are not just time-filling activities but have a great educational value. Most games make learners use the language instead of thinking about learning the correct forms. In the easy, relaxed atmosphere which is created by using games, students remember things faster and better. That is why games are important part in the process of teaching articles and I try to use them in all possible ways. At the same time teachers should be very careful about choosing games if they want to have any results. They must correspond to the pupils' level, age, to the material that is to be introduced or practiced. Here is the example of the game which can help teachers to combine teaching articles and vocabulary.

What’s in the picnic basket?

The teacher asks pupils to look at the picture. Make sure that they know the English names of everything in the basket. Pupils write the words in the correct column with a or an. The teacher can add some additional tasks to this game. Such as: make a list of foods you can take on a picnic.

What are they?

Review nationality adjectives with the aid of a map of the world. Pupils look at the pictures and say the correct nationality adjective for the objects with a or an. For example: an American, a Greek, a Spanish, an English, an American, an Italian, etc.

Another important point is dialogues. As while using games the teacher with the help of dialogues can combine teaching grammar and vocabulary (see Appendix 2). I suggest using the following activity.

Dialogue: Lady: Would you like … apple?

Guest: Oh, yes, please! I love … apples.

L: Well, there’s … big one and … small ones.

G: Oh, I’ll have … small one please.

L: Are you sure you won’t have … big one?

G: Yes, thanks. Mmm! What… tasty apple!

Work in pairs and act out similar conversations about some other fruit. Make general statement about your likes and dislikes of the things to eat listed below.

My investigation showed that combining all this activities helps to explain the material and it is easier for the students to understand it better.

2.4 Testing using articles.

Presenting the rules of using articles and doing different exercises are only primary activities. At the output phase every teacher needs information about the learners' grammar skills. For assessing learners' knowledge and ability to use the articles appropriately different testing techniques can be used. Such as:

1) Multiple-choice tests. In this type of exercise the pupils are asked to select from the forms given the one that makes the sentence correct from the forms they have studied the one required for a given context.

Multiple choice exercises can be used on all grade levels with increasing difficulty of content and form. Some sample exercises follow.

The learners have to select the correct variant.

to have

a. dinner b. the dinner c. a dinner

to go by

a. a car b. car c. the car

We found him at…

a. work b. the work c. a work

I have no pen at…

a. hand b. a hand c. hand

2) matching. This type is similar to the multiple choice type in that the pupils have to choose from the forms given the one that completes the sentence or the word-combination correctly. Instead of having several choices for each blank, however, there is usually an equal number of beginnings and endings of sentences or word-combinations. Once unscrambled, there is one correct ending for each beginning. Before starting doing this type of exercises the teacher should present a number of fixed phrases to the class, such as to have dinner, hand in hand, to go home and others. Here are some sample exercises.

1. day and a. the better

1. to have a b. hand

2. the sooner c. morning

3. in the d. headache

4. sun and e. cold

5. catch a f. night

6. hand in g. moon

3) sets. The learners are asked to read the lists of expressions. It is necessary to find the mistake in each list.

in the morning to leave town the Pacific Ocean

on the earth by chance the Lake Baikal

side by side from left to right at hand

the Black Sea at t he work arm in arm

4) completion exercises. This type of exercises requires more of the pupils than either the multiple choice or the matching type. In this type, the pupils are asked to supply the missing part of incomplete sentences.

Put in a/an, some, or the.

One day last month I was driving through the countryside, I saw … man and … truck next to … covered bridge. … bridge crossed … small river. I stopped and asked … man, «What's the matter? Can I be of help?»

«Well,» said … man, «my truck is about a half inch too tall. Or … top of … bridge is a half inch too short. Either way, my truck won’t fit under … bridge. «

«Hmmm. There must be … solution to this problem,» I said.

«I don’t know. I guess I’ll have to turn around and take another route».

After a few moments of thought, I said, «Aha! I have … solution!»

«What is it?» said … man.

«Let a little air out of your tires. Then … truck won’t be too tall and you can cross … bridge over … river. «

«Hey, that’s … great idea. Let’s try it!» So … man let a little air out of … tires and was able to cross … river and be on his way.

5) The task is to choose one of the topics from those given below. The pupils should pay special attention to the use of articles.

«My Family»

«At School»

«My Working Day»

«My Holidays»

«Seasons and Weather»

Opportunity should be given for the pupil to express his own thoughts and ideas in these exercises. Though the pattern is there to limit or control the language he uses, he should be encouraged to express what he thinks, using the vocabulary he knows and the situations he is familiar with. It is only when the speaker feels that he is communicating his real purpose and intention that language has meaning for him.

In conclusion, it should be said that everything a pupil writes as a test must be easy for him because he is asked to write only those which he already knows thoroughly.

It cannot be stressed strongly enough that none of the above types of tasks can be used as tests if the pupils were not taught to do them in the process of learning the target language.

The results of my investigation show that there is no easy, systematic way to learn articles. They are best learnt through examples, word combination, phraseological units, and practice of different exercises. Teachers of English should draw pupils' attention to articles in all possible ways. Here are some advantages you may wish to highlight:

— more information about using articles,

— more examples,

— often have grammar exercises,

— illustrations to teach lexical sets,

— have some exercises.

There is no «magic» way to learn articles. The best way to approach them is through regular and extensive practice. Exercises presented will give pupils practice in both understanding the meaning and using articles appropriately in context. [7: 53; 11: 138]


The article is a form-word of the noun, and serves to specify it. There are two articles in Modern English: the indefinite article and the definite article. The use of these articles depends mainly on whether you are referring to any member of a group, or to a specific member of a group. Another important, and so far unsolved problem is the question of teaching articles.

The indefinite article has two forms: a and an. The form a is used before words beginning with a consonant. The form an is used before words beginning with a consonant. The form an is used before words beginning with a vowel. The indefinite article originated from the Old English numeral an (one). As a result of its origin it is used only with countable nouns in the singular.

The indefinite article is used before a noun when we name an object referring it to a class of objects having this name or when a person or thing unknown to the hearer or reader is mentioned for the first time.

The definite article has one graphic form the. It originated from the demonstrative pronoun that; it is used with nouns both in the singular and in the plural. The definite article is used before a noun when a particular object is meant which we single out from all the other objects of the same class or with a noun if it is clear from the context or situation what particular object meant.

While some nouns combine with one article or the other based on whether they are countable or uncountable, others simply never take either article. No article is used with nouns preceded by possessive, demonstrative or interrogative pronouns as well as the pronouns some, any, no, each, every. Zero article is used with a noun in the plural if the indefinite article was used in the singular, with the names of seasons, months and the days of the week. But when these words have limited attribute, they are used with the definite article. The article is often omitted in newspaper headlines and in a number of set expressions.

Another important, and so far unsolved problem is the question of teaching articles, as there is no easy way of teaching and learning articles. Only through different exercises pupils can learn how to use articles correctly.


Курсову роботу присвячено особливостям викладання теми «Артикль». В англійській мові перед іменниками вживається особливе службове слово — артикль. Відповідно ця робота розкриває поняття про означений та неозначений артиклі, різницю між ними, основні особливості вживання, випадки коли артикль відсутній, тобто нульовий артикль. Також увагу звернуто на різноманітні вправи для вивчення, вдосконалення та перевірки правильності використання артиклів.

Мета цієї роботи розкрити і описати поняття про артиклі; відмінності у вживанні; способи викладання теми «Артикль»; шляхи подолання труднощів у процесі викладання.

Відповідно до мети поставлено наступні завдання:

· розкрити поняття про артикль;

· визначити основні відмінності у використанні артиклів;

· описати способи викладання теми «артикль».

Перший розділ роботи розкриває поняття про неозначений (якщо особа чи предмет згадуються вперше), означений (якщо з ситуації, попереднього досвіду або з контексту зрозуміло про який предмет іде мова) та нульовий артикль (коли артикль опускається). Другий розділ розкриває шляхи та методи викладання теми «артикль», способи пояснення даної теми, характеризуються вправи для вивчення даної теми, способи контролю та способи подолання можливих проблем. В другій частині своєї роботи я навела приклади вправ, які допоможуть вчителеві урізноманітнити процес пояснення даної теми та зацікавити учнів, спонукаючи їх до активної співпраці.

List of References

1. Betty Schrampfer Azar. Fundamentals of English Grammar. Second Edition. 1992.

2. Collins Cobuild English Grammar. Harper Collins Publishers. London. 1990.

3. David Crystal. Rediscover Grammar. Longman.

4. Edward Woods, Nicole Mc Leod. Using English Grammar: meaning and form. Cambridge. 1990.

5. Geoffrey Leech and Jan Startvick. A Communicative Grammar of English. Longman. 1994.

6. Geoffrey Leech. An A — Z of English Grammar and Usage. Nelson. 1991.

7. Jeremy Harmer. How to teach English Grammar. Longman. 1998.

8. L. G. Alexander. Longman English Grammar. Longman. 1998.

9. Michael Swan. Practical English Usage. Oxford University Press. 1992.

10. Penny Ur. Grammar Practice Activities: a practical guide for teachers. Cambridge University Press. 1988.

11. Raymond Murphy. English Grammar In Use. Cambridge University Press. Second Edition. 1994.

12. Sidney Greenbaum, Randolph Quirk. A Student’s Grammar of the English Language. Longman. 1990.

13. Английский артикль и его роль в грамматике текста. Шмелинг Д. А. // Иностранные языки в школе. № 6. 1978.

14. London And Its Places of Interest. Svitlana Kochergina // English. № 41(425), 2008

15. Викладання англійської граматики: філософські аспекти, комунікативні методи. // Англійська мова та література. 2003. № 17−18.

16. http: //owl. english. purdue. edu/handouts/print/esl/eslart. html

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