20 October 2008

overgeneralizing

My Spanish 3 students are overgeneralizing. It's fine, it's a normal part of language acquisition, but it's driving me nuts. In case you aren't familiar with the phenomenon, overgeneralizing is what happens when a child acquires the irregular past "went," then discovers that we form past by adding -ed to verbs, and overgeneralizes to the irregulars and suddenly starts saying things like "she goed" and "he singed."

My Spanish 3 cherubs are doing it with the most elementary things--I'm getting tons of yo es and yo gusto. At least they don't think me means "I," which is what frequently happens after students learn me gusta. So today we're taking this quiz, not really to test the difference betwee soy and estoy, but rather to make them write yo soy and yo estoy repeatedly, as well as me gusta and me gustan.

This is the quiz:
Yo soy / yo estoy…
1. estudiante
2. alto
3. en casa
4. listo (inteligente)
5. chico/chica
6. estadounidense
7. listo (preparado/a)
8. enfermo/a

(No) me gusta / me gustan…
9. los payasos
10. la escuela
11. la Internet
12. burritos de frijoles
13. uvaslos libros en español

Here's hoping it works!

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