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Is learning grammar important?
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Grammar helps us to learn foreign languages

Understanding our own grammar is essential for learning and adapting to the grammar of other languages. Learning a foreign language's proper sentence structure will help one in forming sentences that are clear and understandable to speakers of said language.
Education English Grammar Language
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The Argument

In order to learn a foreign language, two things must occur: an English-speaker must have a mastery over their own language's grammar, and they must have a firm grasp of the grammar of the language which they are learning. Understanding the grammar of one's own language is an essential first step to learning another language. One who is well-versed in sentence structure and especially verb conjugation will be able to translate those skills more easily into the language which is being learned. Sentence structure is crucial because it's important to know where in a sentence a part of speech is supposed to go: Where does the verb go? Where does the subject go? Where do you add in other parts of speech such as pronouns, conjunctions, prepositions? Verb conjugation is of even higher importance because of the many forms a verb can take: How do you say "I/he/she/they/you go to the store" in past, present perfect, future, past perfect, and other tenses? Now, how do you translate all of this knowledge into another language? Once one has a solid command of English grammar, one can learn and compare English grammar with the grammar rules of the language they are learning. What is the sentence structure like? Do the different parts of speech go in the same order as they do in English? Are verbs conjugated in the same way? What about irregular verbs? Without knowledge of English grammar, one would be lost in a confusing mess of learning unfamiliar concepts when attempting to learn the grammar of a foreign language.

Counter arguments

Having a knowledge of English grammar rules will not ensure success at learning another language. We speak our own native language intuitively, and most people are able to do so without knowing a single grammar rule.[1] If we had to know grammar rules in order to speak our language, we wouldn't be able to speak it at all. Babies do not study grammar to learn how to speak; they listen and repeat. The same needs to be done in order to learn a foreign language: Learn it by listening to common phrases and repeating them.[2] Likewise, a speaker of a foreign language does not need to understand their own grammar rules in order to speak their own language, and neither do we. Again, it is listening, speaking, and immersing oneself into a language that makes it easiest to learn a language.


[P1] English-speakers must understand their own grammar to learn the grammar of another language. [P2] In order to learn another language, one must understand its grammar to know how to form sentences and conjugate verbs properly so that one can be understood.

Rejecting the premises

[Rejecting P1] We learn our own language without understanding its grammar rules. [Rejecting P2] One doesn't need to know grammar rules in either English or the language being studied in order to learn said language.


This page was last edited on Monday, 26 Oct 2020 at 14:23 UTC

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