During your study group, discuss the following questions with your fellow participants. After you have completed your study group discussion, email any lingering questions you have to the presenter.

  1. According to Green (2002), the preverbal markers finna, steady, and come have been identified in AAE, but they have not been analyzed to the same extent as habitual be, been, and done (page 70). Why do you think this might be the case? What should researchers do to more thoroughly analyze finna, steady, and come?
  2. How would you describe to a student how the existential it is used in AAE? What similarities and differences does it have with the Standard English existential they? Be sure to provide some examples.
  3. How might English learners be confused by the use of the “preterite had” in AAE, as used in the sentence “I was playing basketball and I had went for a layup and then came down and sprung my ankle” (Green, 2002, p. 91). What does Green mean when she explains that the “preterite had” in AAE and the pluperfect in Standard English are superficially identical, but express different grammatical categories in each variety of English? What grammatical categories does each structure express?
  4. How might you describe to a student how the suffix -s is used as a narrative marker in AAE, as in the sentence “I dos that” (pronounced like dues, not like does)? Compare and contrast the AAE narrative marker -s with the third person singular marker -s in Standard English (as in “he does that”).

Estimated time for this activity: 1 hour