In my previous post I offered a set of materials to help you teach the 10 most frequent irregular verbs in English. Now, there are a couple of activities to teach, or if you are a student to learn, another set of 10 irregular verbs. We give you a set of activities to help you teach the past tense and the past participle of the verbs give, find, think, tell, become, show, leave, feel, put and bring.
Here you will find a video, a worksheet and a game. The video contains a short dictation, Random Repeat method and a simple fill in the gap exercise. In this way, your students will learn and remember the correct form and pronunciation of the past tense and the past participle of the given verbs. They can practise their knowledge using the worksheets below. And they can really enjoy the lesson by playing the Snake game in which they need to use the irregular verbs again.
[showmyads] I hope you like this post. If you find a mistake comment please!
Irregular verbs – video
The aim of this video is to help people learn the past tense and the past participle of the verbs give, find, think, tell, become, show, leave, feel, put and bring. In the first part, there is a dictation. You need a piece of paper and something to write with. Listen and write the sentences. At the end of the dictation you will see the correct version on the screen.
In the second part of the video, the Random Repeat method is used. This method was suggested in the book Human Memory by Baddeley. You first listen and just repeat the words, then you hear only the infinitive and your task is to say the past tense and past participle of the verb. You have 4 seconds to do this and then you hear the correct answer.
Then, you see a sentence and your task is to complete the sentence with a correct verb in the correct form. You have 5 seconds for this and then you hear and see the correct answer. Please read the whole sentence aloud to maximise the learning.
You can check your answers here:
Did you like the post? Do you find it useful? Have you found a mistake here? Please, let us know and comment!!! Thank you.
Sometimes it is very difficult for students to decide whether they should use the present simple or the present continuous tense. To help them decide correctly, I will share several activities with you. These activities make it clear which tense the students should use and how to form it.
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In this post there are two comic stories and an accompanying worksheet. Then there is an infographic focusing on the keywords which are often connected with the tenses. And the last activity is an interactive game to practise the usage of the two tenses.
Present simple or present continuous – Comics
Now, print the following worksheet and your students should complete the first exercise.
Check the answers and then ask the students to write sentences into the table in exercise 2. It is a good idea to elicit the first line before they start.
In the exercise 3, students write about their normal day.
As an additional activity, you can ask the students to use the comic story and retell the American´s day. Thus they can practise the third person singular.
Now, it is time to hand out the second comic.
You can print the comic here:
Students should read the comic and answer the questions in exercise 4 in the worksheet above.
Present simple or present continuous – explanation
Others might profit from the following infographic which focuses on the key words.
Present simple or present continuous – games
Students work in pairs. They choose a square where they would like to enter their cross or nought. However, they can do so only if they form a correct sentence using all the words of the coordinates for the given square. If they make a mistake they cannot draw anything. If they are not sure, they can check the sentence in the key grid.
The winner is the student who manages to draw four symbols next to each other.
The following game is called Quiz Darts. Your task is to put the verb in the correct tense and if you answer correctly, you can throw the dart. Your task is to score as many points as possible.
Present simple or present continuous – more
Which activity did you like best?
The verb TO BE is the most important verb in English. Unfortunately, it is the most irregular verb in English, too. However, as all students of English manage to master its forms in the end, there is no reason to dispair. This mastery comes through practise.
In this post I would like to share with you several several exercises and games in which your students can practise the verb. There are about 90 different sentences in which students should use the verb TO BE. The vocabulary is limited so that students with a vocabulary of 100 words will be able to do the exercises.
In this post there is an infographic, a worksheet, an online quiz and two games. I hope it is enough and your students will learn the forms of the verb to be.
Verb to be – infographic
If you teach a monolingual group of elementary students it is a good idea to translate the second infographic.
Verb to be – worksheet
Verb to be – online quiz and games
The first game is called Penalty Shootout. In this game you should choose the correct form of the verb to be and then try to score a goal. Good luck.
As the game is in Flash, it will only play on desktop computers.
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.
Verb to be – links
If your students do not know the adjectives used in this post, there is great song teaching the adjectives by my friend Jules from English Through Music Madrid.
In my latest post on irregular verbs I tried to teach 33 irregular verbs. In this post, I would like to add other 30 verbs which I hope you will learn through either the associative method or by using the spaced mp3 recording.
Irregular verbs – associative method
Look at the picture. There are the verbs with pictures and under each of the forms, there are two cells. Complete the cells with words in your mother tongue (or any other language you know) which are similar to the English words. For example: RODE – óda, rod RIDDEN – rýt, den. Don´t be afraid to split the words or jumble them. Write each of your associations into the cells and then you will see that it is much easier to remember the words.
You can download all the worksheets for all the 30 irregular verbs in pdf here:
Irregular verbs – Random repeat
Listen to the recording and in the pauses try to say the past tense and the past participle of the given word.
If you want to listen to all the verbs again and again you can use the following recording:
If you want to download the files and listen to them for example in your car you can do this here:
Irregular verbs – games
To have a better experience on a mobile device, we recommend that you play it on a full screen. Click below
In the second game you should complete the sentences using the correct verb. If you pass this quiz you can play the game called Indiara. Good Luck!!!
Once again if you view this post on a mobile device, use the full screen mode by clicking the button below.
The greatest thing that can happen to a teacher is the aha! moment when suddenly the students get it. And this happened to me on Thursday. I was teaching the modal verbs of deduction for a hundredth time and suddenly the students could understand it and use it correctly. Wonderful feeling!!!
In this post I would like to share all the materials I used in the lesson. There is a mind map and two games. Moreover, for the teachers of English there is a hand out for an activity called pair cards.
Modals of deduction – mind map
The meaning of the modals is often influenced by the context. These mathematical expressions of the meaning should be understood in context. By these modal verbs the speaker expresses how certain he is about the given thing .
Modals of deduction – games
[showmyads] In the first quiz you should complete the second sentence is such a way that its meaning will be the same as the first sentence. Sometimes more than one answer is correct however you have to use the modal verbs of deduction all the time. If you pass the test you can try our new game called Tower defence.
In the second quiz you should do the same as in the first one. However, this time if you pass the test, you will be given a chance to play the game Angry finches. Good luck 🙂
Modals of deduction – for teachers
Cut the worksheet into four different cards. Ask the students to work in pairs and give each student one of the cards. Make sure that each student in the pair has a different card.
On each card some sentences are blue and some are white. The blue ones are the correct answers and the white ones are the students’ task.
Students work in pairs and they read their white sentences and complete the one with the gap in such a way that it has the same meaning as the first one. Their partner listens to them and checks their answer in the blue sentences.
Students take turns and go through the whole cards. Students do not write anything! They just read their answers so they can swap the cards and do the same if they get to the end.
Students often use the wrong prepositions. So I have created this post in hope that this short explanation and practise will help them get at least some of the prepositions correct.
[showmyads] Many teachers claim that students use prepositions incorrectly because of interference from their mother tongue. It is true in many cases but I think it is not the main reason. I believe that students confuse prepositions mainly because these small words often do not hinder communication. Even if students use the prepositions wrongly most of the time, people can still understand them.
In this post students will get a chance to learn some basic nouns + prepositions. To achieve this goal there is a mind map depicting basic nouns + prepositions. Then, there are three games where you can practise what you have learnt in the mind map.
Nouns and prepositions – mind map
You have probably noticed that several words are used with more than one preposition. In some cases there is a difference in meaning and in others there are none. Let’s have a look at these words:
Advantage of / in / to – the meaning is the same.
A relationship / a connection / a contact with – with one noun.
A relationship / a connection / a contact between – between two things or people
An attitude to / towards – both have the same meaning.
Nouns and prepositions – game
En Garde game
The third game is called Teacher invaders and your task is to protect your planet against the invaders. And from time to time you have to complete the sentence with a correct preposition.
The environment is one of the most frequently discussed topics in the world. However, to be able to speak about this topic you need some basic vocabulary. In this post I try to introduce some words related to the topic of Environment. Later you can practise the new words in games.
In this post on you can find a video presentation of all the words given here:
run out of
Environment vocabulary – video
Environment vocabulary – mind map
Environment vocabulary – games
The first game is a simple quiz. Your task is to match the words and definitions, and then complete the sentences with the new words. If you pass the quiz you can play the game called Angry Finches as long as you like.
The second game is called Reaction and your task is to complete the sentences with the missing words and then click on the ugly frog as quickly as possible.
The third game is a dictation game. Listen to the sentences and if you write them correctly you will be given a chance to play the game called Hot race.
The last game is just loosely connected to the topic. It is called Reaction and your task is to write the adjectives of the given words. If you create the adjectives correctly you will play the game Reaction. Wait till the ugly frog appears and then click on it as quickly as you can.
In this post I would like to introduce about 20 new words connected with towns. These words are neccessary if you want to speak about the place where you live or stay.
The vocabulary is for elementary and pre-intermediate students and it covers different basic features which can be found in towns and cities.
[showmyads] This post contains a video with the correct pronunciation and example sentences. Then there is a mind map to help you organise the vocabulary and learn it. In the last part there are several games to give you an opportunity to practise the town vocabulary.
Town vocabulary – video
If you feel that you need to practise the words, watch the video several times.
Town vocabulary – mind map
Town vocabulary – games
Many of my students feel that listening is the most difficult skill. Therefore, I have prepared the following dictation activity. You will hear several sentences and your task is to write the sentence you hear. If you are successful, you will get a chance to play the game Rock, scissors and paper. (Of course, you can skip the game, if you do not want to play it. Just click on the NEXT button and you will get another dictation.)
Students usually understand the usage of the modals in present tense very quickly. However, when they start speaking about the past, they use the present tense or some non-existent forms, like “musted”.
Here I’ve tried to create a simple overview of all the modal verbs and their usage in present and past tenses. I hope you will find it at least a bit useful.
Modal verbs – mind map
Modal verbs – games
English Learning Magazine
Or you could practise the names of the plants in a post which contains the video with the names of the plants and three tests. Moreover, you can listen to a song and complete its lyrics.
The whole site is mobile phones friendly (unlike this one, where the games play only on desktops).
In English there are many ways to speak about future and at the same time there are many grammarians who claim that there is nothing like a future tense in English. I do not want to discuss this issue here, I would only like to present two ways of speaking about future.
[showmyads] First I will introduce the basic system of future tenses in English according to the speaker’s certainty. The tenses presented at the bottom of the pyramid are the least certain to happen. The tenses at the top of the pyramid are the most certain.
MAY/MIGHT and WILL – mind map
MAY/MIGHT and WILL – GAMES
In the second game you should choose the correct form again and score a basket. Good luck.
Here we go at last! This is the last chapter of the story Two Dates. Are you curious what will happen to Alan, Martha and Bruce. I hope that the ending of the story will surprise you at least a bit and that you will like it.
So, what are you waiting for? Start with the mind map and revive what happened in the previous parts of the story Two Dates. Then translate the vocabulary on the vocabulary branch. This time some of the words are pretty challenging. And once you know the new words start the story video.
In the end answer the comprehension questions in the mind map and discuss your opinions with a partner. Good luck and enjoy the story.
Two Dates – story mind map
Two Dates – the story
Two Dates – games
If you are using a mobile phone or an iPad you might be interested in another HTML5 game, you can go to Two Dates Chapter 3 where there is the memory game in HTML5.
The last game is in Flash and it is called Half a minute. Your task is to unjumble the words in 30 seconds. Good luck 🙂
If you prefer reading the story, here is the text of the fourth chapter:
Two Dates – chapter 4 story
Alan decided to hide out in the library where it was quiet, and he knew most people would not be able to find him. He knew he was not a bad kid. True, he might not have the best qualities, or he might not be the best student, but he knew he was a pretty nice guy. He loved animals, and he loved helping people out. He did not deserve such a cruel treatment, so why were they so mean to him?
The sound of footsteps coming up towards him made Alan look up. Susan stood in front of him, with her arms across her chest.
Alan frowned. “What do you want from me?” he said rudely. “Haven’t you guys had enough?”
The look on Susan’s face softened. “I did not laugh at you Alan. That was mean of Martha.” She smiled gently at him and asked him if she could sit next to him. Alan grudgingly agreed. He was wary. Susan could pretend to be nice and then humiliate him again in front of the whole class just like Martha had.
“Why did she do that?” Alan asked Susan. “What did I do wrong?”
Susan shrugged. “Kids do stupid things. Kids can be mean. Martha is just being immature. Forget about her.”
Alan groaned and hid his face into his hands. “I’ll just switch schools. I can never go back to class again.”
Susan hit Alan lightly on the hand. “You can’t give up just like that!”
Alan sighed. “You don’t understand! Everyone laughs at me. I’ll never be able to go to the dance. I’ll be at home alone again, this year.”
Susan smiled, a little shyly. “Guess what,” she said. Alan looked at her. Susan was beautiful too, in a different way. She had a kind face, and a very sweet smile. “I could be your date for the dance.”
Alan stared at her in shock. After a while, he started laughing. “I won’t fall for that again. You’ll humiliate me too, like Martha did.”
Susan rolled her eyes. “Sure Alan. I skipped class, argued with Bruce in front of the whole class, let Martha yell at me too, defended you and looked for you all over the school, just so that I could humiliate you.”
Susan smiled at him. “C’mon, you can’t let bullies ruin your day. Chin up! The day isn’t over. So will you come to the dance with me?”
Alan hesitated for just a moment, enough for Susan to say, “What? Do you think Martha is prettier than me? Is that why you don’t want to come with me?”
“No!” Alan protested, and before he could even think, he grabbed Susan’s hand tightly. “I will come with you,” Susan smiled and kissed him lightly on his lips.
“See you in the class,” she said and walked away.
It was going to be a very different year indeed.
Have you been wondering what the big shock for Alan was? The story continues here. Once again you can learn 16 new words and practise them in a game. Then you can check your comprehension with a mind map which once again serves as a worksheet too.
The next chapter of the story Two Dates will be the last one, so do not miss it. It will be published on Wednesday 2nd April 2014.
If you have missed the previous chapters of this story for teenagers, you can find Chapter 1 here and Chapter 2 here.
Two Dates – a mind map
I hope you like the story and that you will come back for the last chapter of Two Dates.
Once you know all the words it is time to go to the next section.
Two Dates – a video
Two Dates – a game
As there are no articles in my mother tongue, using them correctly in English is a real challenge. Like many other non-native speakers, I often leave them out or use one too many. And my students do this too.
I have been thinking for years how to teach articles effectively and finally I feel that I found the way. I created a mind map which shows the thinking process you should go through to have the articles correct.
Articles – mind map
There are two mind maps. The first one is simpler and the other is for more advanced students.
The mind maps show the thinking process you should go through to get the articles correct. Start at 1 o’clock and go clockwise.
Articles – Video
If you still feel that you need more explanations, you can watch the following video explaining the usage of the definite article “THE”. The recording was prepared by BBC learning English.
Articles – games
For those of you who regularly come to our site there are two new games this time. The first one is a classical game called Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?. You have to answer all the questions correctly to win this game. Good luck!
Articles – Who Wants to be a Millionaire.
The second new game is called Fling the teacher and your task is again to answer all the questions correctly. If you manage to do this you will fire the teacher :-), because you will not need him any more.
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Phrases to ask for advice and for giving advice are incredibly useful for normal life. Students should be able to express their needs and I believe this post will help them with this.
If you go through all the activities here, I am sure that you will learn these phrases in twenty minutes. However, to make this knowledge permanent it is necessary to practise the phrases for asking and giving advice at least once in the following week.
And to practise all the phrases there is the storyboard game:
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My pre-intermediate students are confused by all the different verb patterns. So the last two weeks I spent designing a mind map that would help them. It is in no way a comprehensive description of the grammar, but I feel quite happy about it. Looking for some rules I discovered that the pattern verb + to + verb is much more common than verb + verb-ing.
So my advice to my students is: “If in doubt, use TO + verb.” I hope this mind map will help you understand the verb patterns too.
To practise the verb patterns you can try the following games.
The first game is called Penalty Shootout. Your task is to choose the correct answer and then score a goal. To be able to play the game, you need to download the file and then open it in Acrobat Reader by Adobe.
To practise the verb patterns 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 if you download the file and open it in Acrobat Reader by Adobe.
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