In 1993 Michael Lewis shook the foundations of the ELT industry with the release of The Lexical Approach. In this seminal work, he suggested that practitioners would be better off stepping away from their traditional grammar based syllabi and instead putting a spotlight on formulaic chunks and collocation, arguing that this is in fact how language is stored in and recalled from our brain. A few years later Lewis released Implementing The Lexical Approach and Teaching Collocation, much more practical and digestible texts for language teachers. The theories and techniques he espoused have, in fact, been realized in the way language is presented in many of the more popular ELT textbooks of the past 20 years. Have a look below for more info.
For anyone not so familiar, THIS Guardian article is a good introduction.
I came across Leo’s blog a number of years ago. It’s a language teaching blog with a lexical touch!
And lastly, the two videos below were made to introduce students to the concepts of language chunks and collocation.