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Susan Wilde

ENB4 - investiagtion work

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This is the time of year when our attention turns to this.

I went to my notes on previous ideas I've picked up over the years and found these, which I think originated from Dick Hudson at UCL - but not 100% sure , cos these notes were just cut and pasted for my use - never intended to go further - anyway - these are not MY wordsand not deliberately plagiarised!

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an undergraduate last year who did a lovely study of play-ground language in her old primary school -

were the kids still using the same skipping rhymes etc as when she was there? Were they using the same ones as in the school down the road?

There's some literature on this - see

http://www.phon.ucl.ac.uk/home/dick/bib.htm

What are the grapheme-phoneme correspondences in the local accent, and do they show up in kids' spellings? See:

http://www.leeds.ac.uk/english/staff/afg/lagbleeds.html.

You might like to visit the LAGB fact sheets that I've been trying to build for some years now, though without much uptake -

http://www.phon.ucl.ac.uk/home/dick/facts.htm.

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Edited by susanwilde

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Graveyards often get a mention as mini-projects

Look at words for death /the verses used / cliches used / the way the dead person was referred to /the grammar /graphology on gravestones.

Consider:

What can you infer about a society's attitudes to death from the gravestones?

Are there any diffs in the ways women and men are referred to?

Any children's graves?

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ideas circulating re agony columns

Barbara says:

Adrian Beard's book on Language Change in the Routledge series has a short

section on Problem Pages over time, with examples from Victorian magazines.

He's also done an article in emagazine on Language Change, (Issue 24, April

2004), using one of these examples as the basis for exploring some key

issues about language change

someone else suggested comparing the answers given to the problems posed in Fridays'editions of the Grauniad, which is all on line, and seems like a pretty good idea, since the problem is answered by "readers" who express themselves in varous ways - can the student identify generic features for "professional" advisors, and compare to the "reader in the street" responses?

Edited by Susan Wilde

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there might be some examples of agony aunt stuff in Angela Goddard's book "Researching Language" which I still think is a core text for this whole unit, full of good ideas.

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Guest brinn

Goddard's book does have something on problem pages. One of my weaker students did it last year; comparing pages across mags for different age groups: young female teens; young single female professionals and middle-years women. She managed to find out some interesting things that she hadn't known. It wasn't very original as such (except to her) but the Goddard text provided her with a framework that made this otherwise shaky student feel secure and she took it from there.

There's also an exemplar Language of Death Investigation in one of the AQA Phase material packs. It got an A and is a lovely example of a controlled and tidy investigation.

I wouldn't have got my investigations off the ground without you last year suze and it ended up being quite a huge learning curve! I have decided that I love doing them, though! Not a bad change after feeling as daunted as I did about them this time last year!

Edited by brinn

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I wouldn't have got my investigations off the ground without you last year suze  .....  I have decided that I love doing them, though!  Not a bad change after feeling as daunted as I did about them this time last year!

aaah - you've made me feel all warm inside! LOL that seems like ages ago - but as I recall, one of my best bits of advice - perhaps worthy of repetition, was that the teachers dont have to:

a) "know it all" about what the kids select to do

b. do it all for them!

<_<

I've had a mixed year due to SOME students with the ostrich-approach to study - the ppl who missed ALL their 1 to 1's, not collecting their data and pretending that the have left it home, avoiding handing in any drafts - you know the sort - it has been like a running battle at times.

There is a lot of pressure on staff in this module cos, despite a + b above - students DO need a lot of guidance to do this "new" style of assignement - but when they are good, they are delightful, interesting and genuinely demonstrate learning.

Edited by susanwilde

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