Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

"I ain't be listening that much" or "I don't be listen ing that much"?

Expand Messages
  • dk
    Which one is correct? I ain t be listening that much or I don t be listening that much ? There are millions of Americas who can tell you which sentence is
    Message 1 of 6 , Sep 5 4:52 AM
    • 0 Attachment

      Which one is correct? �I ain�t be listening that much� or �I don�t be listening that much�?

      There are millions of Americas who can tell you which sentence is grammatically correct because there is an accepted grammar at work here.

      Yet this is not a grammar that is taught in schools.

      Rachel Jeantel is the 19-year old girlfriend of Trayvon Martin. Martin was shot and killed in a tragic confrontation in Florida that was headline news around the world. Jeantel�s English also became news when she testified at the trial.

      Jeantel was born and raised in the USA and attended school like all American young people. Yet when she spoke at the trial, she spoke a different English. It was not an English that was in her English book. It was not an English that her teachers taught. It was not an English that her teachers modeled. It was not an English that was on her exam. But it was an English that millions of Americans know.

      �That there is nothing incorrect about the way Jeantel speaks is not so much an opinion as an undisputed fact that any authority on language could readily point out. I breathed a sigh of relief last weekend when linguist John McWhorter explained that Jeantel�s �English is perfect. It�s just that it�s Black English.� What McWhorter calls �Black English� is a dialect spoken by millions of Americans, and decades of linguistics research, much of it compiled by McWhorter himself, attests that it is a robust dialect like any other, with an internally consistent grammar and vocabulary. Many of those millions of speakers speak exclusively African American English in their communities, only to be taught from their earliest interactions with American public institutions, as schoolchildren, that their dialect is ungrammatical.� (1)

      Again we see that the most powerful effective way we learn English is not from the book learning and teacher teaching that goes on but is from our environment, the comprehensible input that we are exposed to and, as Krashen points out, the cultural �club� that we feel we belong to.

      And which of the above sentences is grammatically correct? Read the article referenced below if you are curious.

      Dave Kees

      (1) http://ideas.time.com/2013/06/28/Rachel-jeantel-explained-linguistically/

    • Jim Mahler
      Dave Kees asks: Which one is correct? I aint be listening that much” or “I don’t be listening that much ? He should be asking: Which one will help his
      Message 2 of 6 , Sep 6 12:55 AM
      • 0 Attachment
        Dave Kees asks: "Which one is correct? 'I ain’t be listening that much” or “I don’t be listening that much'?"

        He should be asking: Which one will help his students get admitted to graduate school, find a job, publish a paper....


        From: dk
        To: TEFLChina@yahoogroups.com
        Sent: Thursday, September 5, 2013 7:52 PM
        Subject: (teach) "I ain't be listening that much" or "I don't be listening that much"?

        Which one is correct? “I ain’t be listening that much” or “I don’t be listening that much”?
        There are millions of Americas who can tell you which sentence is grammatically correct because there is an accepted grammar at work here.
        Yet this is not a grammar that is taught in schools.
        Rachel Jeantel is the 19-year old girlfriend of Trayvon Martin. Martin was shot and killed in a tragic confrontation in Florida that was headline news around the world. Jeantel’s English also became news when she testified at the trial.
        Jeantel was born and raised in the USA and attended school like all American young people. Yet when she spoke at the trial, she spoke a different English. It was not an English that was in her English book. It was not an English that her teachers taught. It was not an English that her teachers modeled. It was not an English that was on her exam. But it was an English that millions of Americans know.
        “That there is nothing incorrect about the way Jeantel speaks is not so much an opinion as an undisputed fact that any authority on language could readily point out. I breathed a sigh of relief last weekend when linguist John McWhorter explained that Jeantel’s ‘English is perfect. It’s just that it’s Black English.’ What McWhorter calls ‘Black English’ is a dialect spoken by millions of Americans, and decades of linguistics research, much of it compiled by McWhorter himself, attests that it is a robust dialect like any other, with an internally consistent grammar and vocabulary. Many of those millions of speakers speak exclusively African American English in their communities, only to be taught from their earliest interactions with American public institutions, as schoolchildren, that their dialect is ungrammatical.” (1)
        Again we see that the most powerful effective way we learn English is not from the book learning and teacher teaching that goes on but is from our environment, the comprehensible input that we are exposed to and, as Krashen points out, the cultural “club” that we feel we belong to.
        And which of the above sentences is grammatically correct? Read the article referenced below if you are curious.
        Dave Kees


      • Thomas Krickl
        arrrhhh, Mateys   The second be more correct on International Talk Like a Pirate Day.   http://www.talklikeapirate.com/piratehome.html     The garbage
        Message 3 of 6 , Sep 6 2:01 AM
        • 0 Attachment
          arrrhhh, Mateys
          The second be more correct on International Talk Like a Pirate Day.
          The garbage Rachel Jeantel� speaks is eubonics. Calling it "Black English" is like trying to dress a sow in silk.� � A small group of black activists and their liberal gadflies�are trying to get this lazy English recognized as a separate language so they can teach�it as bi-lingual education.� Have you ever heard of such nonsense before?��
          Larson E. Whipsnade:� Who's the head Ubangi here...the head igarote?
          Black Employee:� I'se assumes that portfolio.���
          Let's�cater a little more to the lowest common denominator while we�wonder why American�test scores stink. ��
          Thomas Krickl, Jiangmen

          From: dk
          To: TEFLChina@yahoogroups.com
          Sent: Thursday, September 5, 2013 7:52 PM
          Subject: (teach) "I ain't be listening that much" or "I don't be listening that much"?
          Which one is correct? “I ain’t be listening that much” or “I don’t be listening that much”?
          There are millions of Americas who can tell you which sentence is grammatically correct because there is an accepted grammar at work here.
          Yet this is not a grammar that is taught in schools.
          Rachel Jeantel is the 19-year old girlfriend of Trayvon Martin. Martin was shot and killed in a tragic confrontation in Florida that was headline news around the world. Jeantel’s English also became news when she testified at the trial.
          Jeantel was born and raised in the USA and attended school like all American young people. Yet when she spoke at the trial, she spoke a different English. It was not an English that was in her English book. It was not an English that her teachers taught. It was not an English that her teachers modeled. It was not an English that was on her exam. But it was an English that millions of Americans know.
          “That there is nothing incorrect about the way Jeantel speaks is not so much an opinion as an undisputed fact that any authority on language could readily point out. I breathed a sigh of relief last weekend when linguist John McWhorter explained that Jeantel’s ‘English is perfect. It’s just that it’s Black English.’ What McWhorter calls ‘Black English’ is a dialect spoken by millions of Americans, and decades of linguistics research, much of it compiled by McWhorter himself, attests that it is a robust dialect like any other, with an internally consistent grammar and vocabulary. Many of those millions of speakers speak exclusively African American English in their communities, only to be taught from their earliest interactions with American public institutions, as schoolchildren, that their dialect is ungrammatical.” (1)
          Again we see that the most powerful effective way we learn English is not from the book learning and teacher teaching that goes on but is from our environment, the comprehensible input that we are exposed to and, as Krashen points out, the cultural “club” that we feel we belong to.
          And which of the above sentences is grammatically correct? Read the article referenced below if you are curious.
          Dave Kees
        • dk
          The interesting fact about Jeantel s English is that it gives insight into how people really learn English. They learn it from their environment, not their
          Message 4 of 6 , Sep 8 3:50 AM
          • 0 Attachment

            The interesting fact about Jeantel’s English is that it gives insight into how people really learn English. They learn it from their environment, not their teaching. They learn it from the comprehensible input they are exposed to.

             

            We are deceiving ourselves if we think this is not so. We are constantly learning from our environments. Urban music, Wall Street traders, mechanics, southern rednecks, New Yorkers, etc., all have a special English that they have developed independent of teaching.

             

            But the additional interesting thing about Jeantel’s English and millions of others is that despite all the teaching many people certainly received, they have not acquired the so-called proper English, the English they were taught. We cannot say this is a phenomena limited to African-America English. It’s true with all Englishes. You can teach an American from the southern states over and over that he cannot say “aint” but he aint gonna necessarily change.

             

            Of course teaching does have an impact on how our students learn and use English. But overall it is a very weak impact. The primary way our students are acquiring their English is from the comprehensible input of their environment.

             

            The relationship is like that of health and hospitals. Our health is not determined by the amount of time we spend in hospitals. Our health is primarily determined by the food we eat, the air we breathe, the exercise we get, the weather and all of those factors that we are exposed to. Hospitals are useful to straighten out problems, deal with infections, something broken, etc.

             

            Our students are going to acquire English from the English environment they are exposed to, the comprehensible input and their cultural identity in the world. Teachers are useful to help students correct problems, things the student has acquired incorrectly.

             

            Dave Kees

          • Margaret Orleans
            Dave points out ... but I think he overlooks two important factors: 1. Second and third languages learned later in life cannot be learned entirely in the same
            Message 5 of 6 , Sep 8 6:28 AM
            • 0 Attachment
              Dave points out

              >But the additional interesting thing about Jeantel’s English and millions of others is that despite all the teaching many people certainly received, they have not acquired the so-called proper English, the English they were taught. We cannot say this is a phenomena limited to African-America English. It’s true with all Englishes. You can teach an American from the southern states over and over that he cannot say “aint” but he aint gonna necessarily change.

              but I think he overlooks two important factors:

              1. Second and third languages learned later in life cannot be learned entirely in the same way as first languages because of the lack of sufficient input.

              2. People who speak more than one language/dialect fluently often code-switch between them, depending on their context and audience.

              I'm a bit shocked at the virulence expressed toward Black English by some of the subsequent posters.  True, it's not standard English and therefore is not very useful in most job situations, but it is a grammatically regular dialect and obviously has important uses for its speakers.  The better educational approach is not to beat it out of students but to make sure that they have mastered both dialects.

              --Peg

              * Discover great books with Suzanne Beecher, five minutes a day, at
              www.DearReader.com *
            • Merton Bland
              Margaret Orleans wrote that people who speak more than one language/dialect fluently often code-switch between them, depending on their context and audience.
              Message 6 of 6 , Sep 9 10:40 AM
              • 0 Attachment
                Margaret Orleans wrote that people who speak more than one language/dialect fluently
                often code-switch between them, depending on their context and audience.

                Possibly the world's greatest code switchers may be the Aussis, who can be sitting around a pub chatting away in "Stryne"until a Brit or some other non-Australian walks in. In less than a blink of a eye everyone is speaking the international version of English.

                When I was training teachers of English in Malaysia one of my master's candidates did her "dissertatiom" (as a Yank I would call it a thesus) on code switching. All the members of her family were fluent in five languages and switched according to subject matter (i.e.: family matters were discussed in Hakka).

                In my own family both my wife and I consider ourselves to be bilingual (English and French). But she was born in France and I was born in the States so our bilingual grandchildren usually speak English to me and French to her.

                Mert - Dr. Merton L. Bland, Arlington, VA, USA
              Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.