“Making” someone “do” something (not “forcing”)

February 11, 2013

A common (language and ideological) mistake in Intermedio 2’s Writings — which I hope all of you can jot down in your List of Mistakes + Oral Drilling — is this:

– to force students to do their homework (and similar sentences).

In terms of LANGUAGE, the structure is:

– to MAKE learners* DO their homework

* adults who take courses just because they want to do so (in non-compulsory education) are learners — “students” is not a mistake, it’s OK, but you could use/learn “learners” too.

The IDEOLOGICAL mistake is:

– Teachers cannot MAKE an adult DO anything, so learners should stop using this idea. Teachers cannot make learners do their homework because learners are responsible for their own behavio(u)r, that’s why we call them adults. 😀 If learners do not do what they need to do when they enrol/enroll in /on a course they freely choose, the logical explanation is not that teachers fail to do their job properly. The fact that teachers are understanding and relate to learners respectfully (not “telling them off” as if they were little children!) should not lead people to assume teachers are not competent! – this is not logical reasoning / this does not make sense. Sadly, when learners “do their homework” is generally speaking when the course is expensive.

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