• Verbs are words that express action or state of being. A verb is always the key words in the predicate. There are three types of verbs: action verbs, linking verbs, and helping verbs. I will talk about one of these types: the linking verbs. (No, not the band Linkin Park).

    Linking verbs connects the subject of a sentence to a noun or adjective that renames or describes the subject. The word, phrase, or clause which follows a linking verb to re-identify or describe the subject is called the subject complement.
    For example:
    The former athlete became a newscaster.
    A parody is a mocking imitation.
    The cake looks delicious.

    Some common linking verbs include be, appear, become, feel, seem, smell, taste, and sound.

    To test whether a verb is a linking verb, replace the verb with the appropriate form of seem. If the sentence is still saying pretty much the same thing, the verb is a linking verb.
    Action Verb: She tasted the ice soup.
    Linking Verb: The soup tasted good.
    (Tasted is used to help good describe the subject.)

  • Hi again! I’m sure you have studied the recount text structure and language features. Now, test your understanding about the material by working on the text in the document I attach here. Read and analyze the text. If you understand the structure and features, I am sure you will be able to produce a similar text. Good luck!

    Click this link to download the file, and have fun!

  • Hello again! In my previous post i wrote about an overview of a recount text. As promised, in this post I will tell you about the structure and language features of a recount text. If you understand this pattern, it will be easy for you to understand and analyze the text.

    The structure of a recount consists of:

    • Orientation or Opening: Information about who, where and when
    • Series of events in the order that they occurred

    Sometimes a recount can also be literary. You may pay attention to:

    • Personal comments and/or evaluation remarks (interspersed throughout the record)
    • A reorientation, which ‘rounds off’ the sequence of events

    A recount text usually uses the following language features:

    • descriptive language
    • past tense
    • time words to connect events
    • words which tell us where, when, with, who, how

    The following checklist may be useful when you read and finally decide whether a text is a recount:

    1. Does it have an introduction giving a rough idea of what it is about? (The W’s)
    2. Is it in time order? (In the order in which things happened)
    3. Are there suitable time connectives such as next, after, finally?
    4. Does it have an ending that brings the writing a clear end?
    5. Is it in the past tense?
    6. Is it written mostly using ‘I’ or ‘we’? (if a personal recount)
    7. Have adjectives and adverbs been used effectively?
    8. Has it been written with an idea of who it was written for?

  • Hi! I am sure you all have ever read a letter. Have you ever wondered when you read a letter you find that it is similar with other texts like biographies/autobiographies, postcards, writes-up of a trip or activity, newspaper reports, diaries, journals, magazine article, or historical events.? Are you aware that they also have a similar structure and language features?

    Those texts are called recount. A recount text usually tells what happened or retell events. It retells events in a chronological way. In non-fiction texts, recounts are used to create factual accounts of events (either current or historical). Recounts can also entertain and/or inform.In other words, recounts can be personal, factual or imaginative.

    1. Personal recount – retelling an activity that the writer has been personally involved in and may be used to build the relationship between the writer and the reader e.g. anecdote, diary journal, personal letter
    2. Factual recount – reporting the particulars of an incident by reconstructing factual information e.g. police reconstruction of an accident, historical recount, biographical and autobiographical recounts
    3. Imaginative recount – applying factual knowledge to an imaginary role in order to interpret and recount events e.g. A Day in the Life of a Roman Slave, How I Discovered Radium
    4. Procedural recount – recording the steps in an investigation or experiment and thereby providing the basis for reported results or findings
    5. Literary recount – to retell a series of events for the purpose of entertaining

    To help you understand a recount text, I will write the structure and the language features in my next post.


  • You can download the course slides by clicking the following links:

    1. lecture 1
    2. lecture 2
    3. lecture 3
    4. lecture 4
    5. lecture 5
    6. lecture 6
    7. lecture 9
    8. lecture 10
    9. lecture 11
    10. lecture 12


    1. kwary.net
    2. http://www.slideshare.net/heping/phonetics-and-phonology
    3. Introducing English Linguistics, 2009, Charles F. Meyer
    4. An Intro to Language, 2003, Fromkin & Rodman
  • March 4! It’s the National Grammar Day in the United States, but I want to celebrate it too as I’m a grammar teacher, haha. Here are some grammatical errors in Indonesian and English I found. Who else wants to join?

  • blah 06.11.2013 No Comments

    I have always wanted to see the world. I’ve been studying foreign languages (English in particular) since i was a kid. Of course when you study or learn a language you will also be intrigued to know more about the culture where the language is spoken, and then you will want to visit the country.

    It was pretty hard to go back then because going abroad is something that neither my parents nor I could afford, and airfare was very expensive. Nothing is impossible, though. I managed to go anyways. Working as a university teacher gives me opportunities. If it’s too expensive to go for a vacation, there are other ways. One door closes, other doors open. If you’re an academic, besides studying abroad, what else can you do but writing a paper, sending it to a conference, and praying that it will be accepted and that the university can be your sponsor (and definitely you have to save some money as you can’t expect to be completely funded, and you will need to  buy souvenirs for your friends and family). That way you can get more benefits: learning new things from the conference, and having a vacation at the same time. Cheap tickets can also be advantageous as you will have connecting flights and then you can see more places too if you’re lucky.

    So far i’ve been to British commonwealth countries. I’ve visited Malaysia, Hongkong, Australia, Singapore, and one ex Portuguese colony, Macau. Seeing the pattern, who knows if i can go to Canada, or USA, or England next, haha! (and Mecca for sure!)

    Kuala Lumpur, 2011

    Sydney, 2012

    Singapore, 2013

    Hongkong, 2013

    Macau, 2013

  • Click the link below to download the slides of Introduction to General Linguistics course. You might also need to install IPA fonts so you can see the symbols used in some of the .ppt files.

    1. Course information

    IPA fonts (.exe file)

    IPA fonts

    2. Second meeting slide

    3. Third meeting slide

    4. Fourth meeting slide

    5. Fifth meeting slide

    edited: check this link

    6. Sixth meeting slide

    7. Eighth meeting slide

    8. Ninth meeting slide

    9. Tenth meeting slide

    10. 11th meeting slide

    11. 12th meeting slide

    12. 13th meeting slide

  • blah 27.08.2012 No Comments

    Tahun 1945 pemuda galau karena Belanda
    Tahun 2012 pemuda galau karena tidak dianggap gaul oleh temannya
    Tahun 1945 banyak pemuda tak sempat sekolah
    Tahun 2012 banyak pemuda malas kuliah
    Tahun 1945 pemuda menulis syair dan lagu perjuangan
    Tahun 2012 pemuda meng-update status dan sibuk pacaran
    Tahun 1945 pemuda teriak ‘merdeka!!’
    Tahun 2012 pemuda teriak ‘ga punya pulsaaa!!’
    Dirgahayu Indonesia

  • tips 04.03.2012 1 Comment

    Happy National Grammar Day! Well, yes. The National Grammar Day is celebrated on March 4, today. I’m trying to write something motivational, and I hope it works :D.

    I often find students and friends who are frustrated when learning grammar. Sometimes English grammar is difficult and discouraging, and you just hate to deal with it.

    I’m not much of a prescriptivist (I use slang too sometimes), and not that because I teach grammar, but I consider grammar important. Why?

    If you study a language, you will also learn its grammatical rules. Let’s say you take a major in English in the university I am working for right now, you will have to take grammar classes for 4 semesters whether you like it or not. As a consequence, you’ll have to answer questions in the grammar exam. You will have to answer questions about dependent clauses, causative, or identify errors in poorly written sentences. If you have an ear of music, you might recognize if a song is by Justin Bieber or Green Day. If you have an ear for a good grammar, you will recognize when something doesn’t sound right.

    Good grammar also helps you get good grades and good jobs. No matter how great your thoughts are, if they are written with grammatical errors, you won’t get good grades. No matter how wonderful person you are, if you have to do a job interview and say “I done good at school and I’ma do good on the job ya gimme, Sir”  to the boss, I don’t think you can get the job, especially if you apply for a language teacher.

    Grammar is the basic rule of forming words into phrases, phrases into sentences, etc. You can study and recognize the pattern. If you understand the pattern, you will know how to arrange words and your sentence will be good, meaningful, thus easy to understand. If it’s not good, people will not understand what you say or write, or at least the meaning is not accurate. If you use your words correctly, you will avoid misunderstandings.

    “I hate grammar, and i think it is okay to throw away my grammar as long as people understand what i say.” That is true somehow, and that is not your fault. Grammar is indeed boring sometimes and often you hear English is spoken in a very different way. Even you see many advertising slogans or songs contain ungrammatical sentences. It is okay though, sometimes violating grammatical rules sounds better when you write slogans or songs. (But hey, are you a famous rock star yet? Haha). Your grammar teacher will help you learn the difference between good and bad grammar to make you do well on exam, because in such situation, bad grammar is not okay (you don’t want to fail on it and repeat the class next semester, right?)

    What about grammar and spell checker on my computer? Well, they are machines. Trust me they don’t always work. Our brain is the most powerful machine in the world.

    So, have fun learning grammar! If you want to check out my previous post on how to make grammar easy, you can click this :D

    (Credit to Liz Buffa and her book Grammar Smart Junior)