Functions of English on the web-site for teachers and learners of English as a secondary language from a German point of view
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Functions of English or "*Equal goes it loose"

After having learnt the basic vocabulary and the basic grammar structures a huge step towards performance can be taken by learning some of the main functions of the English language.
What does "functions" mean in this context?
"Functions" are phrases or clusters of words that are appropriate to a specific situation if used correctly. They vary according to

1. your purpose for example "asking the way", "asking for help", "agreeing and disagreeing" etc.
2. your role as "student or teacher", "father/mother or daughter/son", "employer or employee",
    "friend to friend" etc.
3. the setting / place i.e. "at school", "at home", "at a party", "at a public meeting",
    "queuing at the bus-stop" etc.
4. topics like "pollution", "means of transportation", "friendship and love", "life in a community", "politics"
5. feelings of being happy, afraid, worried, annoyed, disappointed, infuriated, shocked etc.
6. pastime or socializing like "talking about weather"
Some linguists say, that functions only express the intention or purpose of a speech act, others think that your social role, the setting, the topic or even the mood you are in are criteria for choosing the right function to express yourself  effectively.
At school special classroom functions  are needed for discussing a topic, explaining, argument,s or expressions for giving reasons, stating opinions, summary writing , writing an analyse, a report etc.

So you don't have to translate an utterance word by word to get such a meaningless sentence like "**Equal goes it loose."
You must learn some functions like "It's going to start in a minute" or "We are ready to go." or "Off we go."
and when to use them in order to improve your English a lot.


<Click here and you will always get back to the table of contents> Table of Contents Functions of English HOMEback to the homepagePAGE back to the previous page back to
Working on texts
go on to
Functions "purpose"
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