Tag: common mistakes in English

Common mistakes – present simple
Common mistakes – present simple

After teaching present simple to my elementary students, we wrote a test and I collected the most common mistakes my students made. I analysed the mistakes and prepared games and exercises to help my students learn from their mistakes.

In this post there is an infographic with all the mistakes, their corrections and explanations. Then there is a worksheet with 4 exercises, two games and an online quiz to practise the most difficult aspects of the present simple tense.

Common mistakes – present simple – infographic

In the following infographic there are all the most common mistakes my students make in the present simple tense. I have divided the mistakes into three categories. First, my students struggle with questions (they often forget to use DO/DOES). Second, their negative sentences frequently miss something. And last but not least, they still do not stick to the SVOMPT word order.

In the mind map there are all the wrong sentences, their corrections and in blue ink there is an explanation why the sentence was wrong.
[showmyads] Common mistakes in the present simple tense

Common mistakes – present simple – worksheet

Some might find it attractive to start the lesson with the mind map but I do it differently. I use an activity which I found in the book by Scott Thornbury called Teaching Unplugged. I copy all the wrong sentences – each on a separate piece of paper – and I place the sentences around the classroom. Students take a sheet of paper and a pen or pencil and go around the classroom. Their task is to copy and correct the sentences on the sheet. They can help each other. I stop the activity after ten minutes and then I elicit their corrected sentences.

Only after this activity I display the infographic and explain the mistakes.

Then it is time to hand out the following worksheet:

Common mistakes in present simple tense worksheet

In the worksheet there are four exercises. The first one is slightly unusual. First the students have to decide where the verbs go and then they have to put the words into the correct order. The rest of the exercises are all standard exercises.

Common mistakes – present simple – games

The first game is called Penalty Shootout. In this game you should choose the correct form and then try to score a goal. Good luck.
As the game is in Flash, it will only play on desktop computers.
[showmyadsa] Present simple – Penalty game

To practise the present simple tense you can play the following game. Its name is En Garde. Your task is to choose the correct answer and then stop the target as close to the centre as possible. Hopefully, you will be faster and more accurate then your opponent. The game is in Flash and will play only on desktops:

Present simple – En Garde game

The following quiz can help your students practise the past simple tense at home. The quiz consists of two parts. In the first part, students should put the words into the correct order. In the second part, students have to put the verbs into the correct form. Students will be rewarded with a game after each part of the quiz they pass. The quiz is in HTML5, so it will play on all desktops and mobile devices.

Present simple tense – quiz
Common Mistakes in English
Common Mistakes in English

Mistakes that students make should serve as an opportunity to learn. But more often than not students just look at or listen to your correction and pass the opportunity. And that is a pity. As I do not want my students to miss this precious opportunity any more I have come up with a lesson plan which does not allow the students just to pass the common mistakes they make in English, but gives them a fair chance to learn from them.
[showmyads] In this post you will find an infographic, a game and a worksheet with the most common mistakes my students made in their essays.

Common mistakes in English – beginning

Print the following worksheet and give a copy either to each student or ask the students to work in small groups and give a copy to each group. Ask the students to look at the first exercise. That the sentences come from the essays written by other students and that they should correct the red places.

Common Mistakes in English – worksheet

Common mistakes in English – infographic

First elicit the mistakes students have found and corrected.

Then display the following infographic and explain the mistakes and the corrections.

Common mistakes holiday 2

You can hand out the infographic if you think your students might profit from it. Once you have explained everything (as we always do), it is time to give your students a chance to use the knowledge. Now they have to do the exercise 2 and complete the sentences with the words from the infographic.

At the end check their answers – be open to more than one correct answer.

Common mistakes in English – game

The second game is in Flash and will play only on desktop computers. It is called On Target, and your task is to choose the correct option and then shoot all the bad cows and ducks. You can shoot one of the bottles on the wall to get a bonus. Enjoy.

Common Mistakes – On target game