Faculté des lettres et sciences humaines

Grammatikterminologie in den Lehrwerken sowieso und Auf Deutsch!

Lenz, Peter

In: Revue Tranel (Travaux neuchâtelois de linguistique), 1999, vol. 31, p. 95-107

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    The present article discusses the grammatical terminology used in two of the German textbooks which are being introduced into the schools of French-speaking Switzerland. Sowieso (Langenscheidt) uses a solid, Latin-based terminology throughout but, at the same time, encourages teachers to use the terminology which is best known to the respective pupils. It is argued in this article that it makes little sense to introduce a competing terminology into the work with sowieso since grammar work and the use of grammatical terms are so tightly intertwined with the textbook lessons that this step would lead to confusion and make some interesting communicative activities and otherwise useful reference parts useless. An analysis of Auf Deutsch! (Heinemann) shows that explicit grammar is apparently one of the weeknesses of this textbook. The information provided is often faulty, and the use of terminology is inconsistent and confusing. The question is raised whether teachers should replace and complement the grammar parts, or rather reduce grammar teaching to a minimum and take advantage of the assumed strengths of the textbook. Finally, it is suggested that the ongoing introduction of the new German textbooks should be thoroughly evaluated in order to gain enough information for well-founded decisions at the time when the next generation of textbooks will be created or chosen.