“Direct” and its predecessor “Natural” methods of learning foreign languages claim that explicit grammar study is not necessary. Students extract grammar inductively from grammatically correct phrases.
But, the Swedish linguist and polyglot Hunnemark believed that knowledge of a certain minimum of grammar rules doesn’t hurt, but rather helps.
What are these rules?
(We will use examples from Spanish)
1. Word order in a sentence.
The order of words in Spanish sentence is the same as in English: subject, predicate, addition.
Example: A man goes home. - Un hombre va a casa.
2. Place of definition (adjective)
In English before a noun. In Spanish, the adjective comes after the noun:
a big house - un casa grande
3. The grammatical gender.
Not available in English. In Spanish, nouns, adjectives, and articles can be masculine or feminine.
a beautiful girl - una chica hermosa
a little boy - un chico pequeño
4. Plural form.
Same way as in English, formed by adding the letter "s";
Unlike English, Spanish articles and adjectives also have the plural form.
the little boys - los niños pequeños
the beautiful girls - las chicas hermosas
5. Conjugation of verbs.
Verbs conjugation in Spanish language is a very big topic because unlike English each verb in Spanish has more than 200 forms.
Basic conjugation rules are described here.
The order of the study of Spanish conjugations is given here.