This week I learned two concepts that improve my teaching skills.
First, Korean in a pro-drop language. The subject of a Korean sentence in routinely dropped. The pronoun is dropped. Thus, it is a pro-drop language.
I am hungry.
배고파요. This literally translates as “Stomach hurts.” Korean leaves out the “I”.
In contrast to this, English requires dummy subjects. These are empty subjects that have no meaning.
In the English sentence:
“It is raining.” What does the “it” refer to? There is no antecedent. It could refer to nature, weather, or the sky. However, it is never explicitly defined.
Second, pronouns do not replace nouns. I have been teaching English wrong for years. Sigh. Pronouns replace noun phrases.
“The little green man is cute.” can not be written as “The little green he is cute.”
It has to be written as, “He is cute.”
When teaching English as a foreign language, it is important to know what is a language omits and what can not. Especially, dummies can not be forgotten.
Hornsby, D. (2014). Linguistics: a complete introduction. London: Teach Yourself.