These are activities for intermediate students to review travel related phrasal verbs. Students write their own definitions of the phrasal verbs and answer related questions in pairs or groups.
Time: 45 minutes
- To review travel related phrasal verbs.
- To provide definitions of the travel related phrasal verbs.
- To use the phrasal verbs in meaningful context whilst answering questions in pairs or small groups.
- Hit the road! Worksheet A, one per student.
- Hit the road! Worksheet B, one per pair or small group, cut up.
- Hand each student Hit the road! Worksheet A.
- Individually, students write their own definitions of the 15 phrasal verbs on the list.
- When the students have finished, they compare their answers with a partner.
- Check the answers and clarify meanings as a class.
- Hand each pair, or small group, a complete cut up set of questions from Hit the road! Worksheet B.
- In pairs or small groups, students discuss and answer the questions on each of the cards incorporating the phrasal verbs from the questions into their answers.
- Ask students to share the most interesting answers they have heard with the rest of the group.
Students briefly describe what they are going to do next time they go away for a few days, using as many of the phrasal verbs as possible. The student who manages to include all the verbs into their response wins, e.g. I will set off early to avoid traffic. I will book into a nice hotel by the beach, switch off my phone, kick back and relax.
Hit the road! Worksheet A
Hit the road! Worksheet B
P.S. Kick back and enjoy your holiday Alex.
This is a role-play to practise the structure of ‘have something done’. Students have bumped into an old friend and are trying to arrange a meeting but, unfortunately, they seem to be too busy having their eyebrows waxed and their coats dry cleaned to meet up with their friend.
Level: B1 +
Time: 45 minutes
- To clarify and reinforce the structure have something done.
- To do a role-play to practise and increase confidence in the correct use of have something done.
- What a lame excuse PDF worksheet
- Give the students the PDF worksheet and ask them to individually separate the expressions in Exercise 1 into two groups: things they are able to do themselves and things they would have to ask or pay someone to do for them.
- In pairs, ask the students to compare their lists.
- Explain and clarify the difference between to do something yourself and to have something done for you.
- Students work individually to complete the table (Exercise 2) with all the things they will need to have done the following week, e.g. have their car fixed, have their coat dry cleaned, etc. Tell them to leave three squares empty.
- Tell the students they have just bumped into an old friend from school who is only in town until Friday.
- The students have to check their schedule to see if they can squeeze their friend in. Student A: So lovely to see you again. Fancy a cup of coffee Tuesday morning? Student B: Oh my goodness. That would be lovely but I’m having my eyebrows waxed. How about in the evening? Student A: Oh no. I’m afraid I’m having my teeth checked.
- Students are only allowed to offer their friend 3 options (they don’t want to seem desperate after all!) before they switch pairs.
- When the students have spoken to at least 3 people in the classroom, ask them how many friends they have managed to squeeze into their busy schedules.
- Students write down 5 things they would be happy to pay for, e.g. to have their house cleaned every week, and 5 things they would rather do themselves to save money, e.g. to paint the walls in their house.
What a lame excuse! Worksheet
P.S. This post is dedicated to Alex who has recently discovered the joys of essentialism.
This is a fun, competitive board game for small groups of 3 or 4 players to review the time expressions used with past simple and present perfect tenses.
Time: 45 minutes
- To reach the end of the board with the highest number of points by forming questions or affirmative and negative sentences whilst using the time expressions written on the cards.
- 48 printable cards, one per group of 3 or 4.
- 1 board, 1 die and 3 or 4 checkers per group of 3 or 4.
How to play:
- Print and cut out the cards, one set per group of 3 or 4, and place in three piles (Qs, As & Ns) face down on the table.
- The players take it in turns to throw the die and move the number thrown.
- When a player lands on a Q, A or N square they take the top card from the corresponding pile and create a Question or Affirmative or Negative sentence using the time expression on that card. For example, Q: Have you ever ridden an elephant before? A: I’ve ridden a donkey twice. N: I haven’t ridden a camel this week. If the player uses the correct tense with the expression given they receive a point. The card is then placed at the bottom of the pile.
- Play continues in a circle going left.
- Monitor and write down the mistakes the players make and offer them an opportunity at the end of the game to correct them. They receive additional points for each mistake they correct.
- The winner is the player with the highest number of points for correct sentences.
P.S. Thank you for your helpful feedback Kate. I really appreciate it.
Best birthday ever
Summary of past or recent events
This is a role play for intermediate + students to review past modals. Students have upset someone important in their lives by doing, or not doing, something important and they must think of excuses to defend themselves.
- To review and correctly use past modals in context.
- To practise pronunciation of contracted verbs ‘should have’, ‘could have’ and ‘would have’.
Printable cards: print and cut out one set
- Review uses and form of ‘should have’, ‘could have’ and ‘would have’. Draw attention to the pronunciation.
- In pairs, students decide on their roles – student A is angry, student B is guilty.
- Student B takes a card with the description of their wrongdoing. They must place themselves in the situation and briefly describe what they have done to student A, e.g. ‘I am so sorry I didn’t call you last night, but I was out with friends and my battery died.’
- Student A is annoyed and must use ‘should have’, ‘could have’ and ‘would have’ in the discussion, e.g. You should’ve charged your phone before you left home. You could’ve looked for an internet café and emailed me. I would’ve have done anything in my power to get in touch with you.
- Student B must defend themselves, e.g. ‘The electricity went off and I couldn’t charge my phone!’, until student A has given at least 3 examples using ‘should’ve’, ‘could’ve’ or ‘would’ve’ done.
- Monitor and offer feedback. Students swap roles and repeat with a different situation.
- When the students have finished, ask them to choose their most interesting exchange to write as a dialogue and perform to the other students.
P.S. Stu, you really should’ve cut up the cards before the class the other day 🙂
P.S. Thank you Alex. I couldn’t have done it without you.
P.S. Thank you Stu. Without you putting me in a bit of a sticky situation in December, I would have procrastinated even more.
This is a fun Find Someone Who… with a twist activity to practise asking for opinions. It allows students to interact with 6 different classmates and discuss a variety of topics.
- To practise asking for opinion using the expressions given.
- To find out why students’ classmates agree or disagree with the statements given.
- To get other classmates’ opinions on all the statements on the worksheet.
- Hand out one worksheet to each student.
- Students must mingle with other students, asking about the statements on their lists.
- Students must ask a classmate their opinion on the given topic, using one of the expressions at the top of their worksheet. They must then complete the box with the name of that classmate and the reason why they agree or disagree with the statements given e.g.: Student A: I’d be very interested to hear your views on cutlery. Do you think it’s useless? Student B: Well, to be honest, I think it’s a complete waste of money and we should all use our fingers instead.
- Students are not to discuss more than two statements with each classmate.
- When the students have had a chance to ask everyone’s opinion, ask them to share the most interesting views with the rest of the class.
This is a lesson plan for intermediate + students. Students look at relationship related vocabulary, create a short love story and write an informal letter to a friend asking for advice.
- To introduce relationship related vocabulary.
- To use new vocabulary in context to create a short love story.
- To write an informal letter to a friend asking for advice.
- Give each student worksheet A with relationship related vocabulary.
- Go through the vocabulary together to make sure the students understand all the expressions.
- Working individually, the students divide the expressions into ones they have positive and negative associations with and then discuss it with their partner.
- In pairs, the students must now create a short love story using as many expressions from the previous stage as possible.
- Monitor the use and repetition of the target language.
- Still in pairs, the students describe in detail one of the couple’s conflicts or arguments.
- When the discussion is over, students now become the main characters in their stories (student A represents one character and student B his or her partner) who are unable to resolve their issues without help. Individually, they must write an informal letter (Worksheet B) to a mutual friend (140- 190 words), in which they present their version of events and ask for some advice. The students must use at least 6 new relationship expressions in their letter.
- When the students have finished, they swap their two versions of events with another pair who then must discuss and decide the best course of action for the couple in question.
These are some activities you can do with lower intermediate + students to review countable / uncountable nouns and quantifiers. Students divide the nouns into categories, make a shopping list and use the language in a role-play.
- To review countable and uncountable nouns.
- To review common quantifiers used with countable and uncountable nouns.
- To give learners an opportunity to use the target language in a role-play situation.
Cut up Worksheet A (countable / uncountable nouns) and Worksheet B (quantifiers).
- Elicit examples of countable and uncountable food items from students and put them in two categories on the board.
- Divide the students into pairs and hand out each pair one set of countable and uncountable nouns cards (Worksheet A) for students to divide them into two columns: countable and uncountable.
- Correct and provide feedback.
- Elicit examples of quantifiers they could use with countable nouns, e.g. a few, many, several, some, a lot of, a large number of etc.
- In their pairs, students now think of an appropriate quantifier they could use with each of the uncountable nouns on their list, e.g. a bottle of oil, etc.
- Give each pair of students the set of quantifier cards (Worksheet B) for them to match the quantifiers to the uncountable nouns.
- Correct and provide feedback.
- Students now choose 6 food items from their lists and move all the other food cards aside. Using only these six ingredients, they must think of a dish they would make and discuss it with their partner.
- With this dish in mind, students then make a shopping list, e.g. a bag of flour, six eggs, a kilo of oranges, etc.
- Divide the class into two groups, shopkeepers and shoppers.
- Divide ONE set of countable / uncountable nouns cards (worksheet A) equally between all the shopkeepers.
- Using their lists, the shoppers must try to buy the ingredients they need to prepare their dish from the shopkeepers. If they use their ingredients correctly in a sentence with the correct quantifier, they keep the card, e.g. Can I have half a kilo of apples, please? Can I have a bottle of olive oil, please?
- When the shoppers have completed their shopping lists, the students swap roles and repeat.
- Students make a detailed list of things they need to buy next time they go grocery shopping.