Recently my colleague noticed that our textbook contains too few exercises to practise the verb HAVE GOT. To bridge this gap I decided to create a board game. A board game will allow my students practise the grammar in a fun way and this activity can be used repeatedly.(more…)
Speaking activities are essential in a communicative approach. Most people agree that students should communicate ever since they start learning English. However, it is really difficult to design genuine communicative tasks for low-level students of English. In this post, I would like to share two communicative tasks for beginners. In the first one, students practise the verb HAVE GOT and in the second one they go shopping for clothes. I hope you like them.
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Speaking activity – HAVE GOT
For this speaking activity, you need two worksheets. Each student needs the following picture:
Second, each student needs to cut the following picture into the pictures.
Each student places four of the machines into their picture (one machine is in the garden, one is at home, one is in the picture and one is at school). They must not show their board to anyone.
Students work in pairs and they try to guess what their partner has placed in the places. They have to ask: “Have you got a computer?” If the answer is YES, they go on. “Have you got the computer in the garden?” If the answer is YES again, the thing is removed from the game. If the answer is NO, students swap roles. Students swap roles every time they answer NO.
The winner is the student who removes the four things from their partner’s plan first.
Students love the game.
You can download the worksheets here in pdf file.
Speaking activity – SHOPPING
I had to teach my students how to shop. There was a nice dialogue in the textbook which I turned into a vanishing drill and we learnt it. Then I was looking for a communicative activity where my students would be able to use the phrases. Unfortunately, there was none. So I spent quite a lot of time creating it. I hope you will find it useful.
Print the following worksheet. Students work in pairs and each of them has one half of the worksheet. They must not show their worksheet to their partner and their task is to find out how much they have to pay for the clothes with no price tags. They should use the dialogues in the boxes. Point out that they should use the blue dialogue for the clothes in the blue square and the yellow dialogue for the ones with the yellow background.
Speaking activity – your opinion
Which of these activities do you like better:
Speaking activities are the most important component of English courses using communicative approach. However, it is very difficult to find quality speaking activities that would work. That is why I would like to publish a speaking activity here once a week. All the activities will be based on the recommendations given by Keith S. Folse in his wonderful book The Art of Teaching Speaking.
In the first post I offer you two pair speaking activities using school subjects and the verb HAVE. Let’s start!
School subjects – language for the activity
To be able to complete the task successfully, students will need the following sets of language: the verb HAVE (or have got) and the names of the school subjects.
If you have not taught the school subjects yet, it is necessary to do so before you start the speaking activities. For the following tasks, your students need to know the following school subjects:
The other set of language your students need to know is the usage of the verb HAVE for questions like “What subject has she got on Monday?” or sentences like “She has chemistry on Monday at 11 o’clock.” You can find materials for teaching the verb HAVE GOT here. Once your students know the vocabulary and grammar you can move to the next part. Please, do not skip this step. Otherwise, your students might be either very quiet or use their native language to accomplish the tasks.
School subjects – speaking activities
In my experience students speak most when they work in pairs or groups of three. In bigger groups some students tend to dominate the task and some opt for not doing anything. That is why all of these tasks are designed for pairs or small groups.
The first activity is called Information gap. In this task students trade missing pieces of information to complete their sheet.
Information gap – in class
Put the students in pairs.
Hould up an example of the two sheets and explain that you’ll give each pair an A sheet and a B sheet.
Each sheet has a school timetable, but each sheet has only part of the timetable. Pairs need to work together to find out their missing information so that they end up with two complete and identical sheets.
Distribute the papers. Tell them not to look at each other’s papers. Let the students do the task.
Once they finish they can show each other the sheets and compare them.
Here are the two sheets:
Battle: Find it first – in class
In this task, students work in groups of three and they take turns asking yes/no questions to identify the picture that one student has in mind.
Print out one copy of the sheet (all 9 timetables) for each student.
Hold up one of the sheets and show everyone that the sheet contains nine timetables that are similar yet different. Students need to listen, think and then ask questions so that they can guess which picture the person is thinking about.
Put the students in groups of three.
Student A will pick a timetable and then students B and C will take turns asking yes/no questions to try to identify A’s timetable. B begins with a yes/no question. If A answers yes then B continues. If A answers no, then c asks a question. The goal is the to be the person who gets a yes answer to the a question such as, “Is it Jane’s timetable?”
After B or C has guessed A’s timetable, then A and C try to guess B’s timetable. Finally, A and B try to guess C’s timetable.
The winner is the student who guesses most timetables.
I hope that you find the School subjects – speaking activities useful and that you will use them in your classes. You can download the worksheets in pdf here. All the pictures are in much better quality here:
For an unknown reason many elementary textbooks teach HAVE GOT at the very beginning. Students find it difficult and they get confused. Moreover, they get even more fed up when they learn that the Americans do not use this form.
But I have to teach the grammar, so there is no use crying over spilt milk. To be honest, I was not very successful the last time I taught this grammar, and that is why I decided to create some new materials.
In this post you will find a song, an infographic, a worksheet with communicative activities, and an interactive online quiz.
Have got – song
Start the lesson with the following song. Ask the students to listen and complete the lyrics. Check their answers and ask the students to listen and sing along. In this way they will practise their pronunciation and grammar at the same time.
Have got – infographic
Now draw the students’ attention to the following infographic. Explain the form of the verb have got. This may be the right time to drill the form.
Once you have explained the grammar, it is time to practise it using the following worksheet. Download it and print it out.
Ask the students to work in pairs. They must not show their pictures to their partners.
In the first exercise they look at their picture and write what they have in the bag.
In the second exercise they write questions asking whether their partner has the same things in their bag . When the students finish writing their questions, they work in pairs and ask and answer in pairs.
In the third exercise, the students look at their bags. Then they look at the objects on the right. They ask their partner whether Jane or David has these things in their bags. They tick or cross out the objects in their pictures.
Have got – online quiz
The following quiz can be taken at school or you canask your students to do it at home.
In the first part, the students should write correct sentences about the pictures using HAVE GOT. If they produce enough correct sentences, they will be able to play the game called Angry Farmer.
In the second part of the quiz they should first match the pictures and the words and then write them. In the last part of the quiz they have to write the correct answers. Again, if the students pass the quiz they will be rewarded with a game. This time they should write the words they see in the picture (of course, in English).
I have changed jobs and now I teach at elementary school. And even though I think that I am an experienced teacher I have never taught students with actual learning problems. Now I do, and I face real challenges. For example, this week I taught the verb HAVE GOT from the Project 1 textbook, and I failed to teach anything at all. When I asked my students to complete the green table with the correct forms, there was no reaction. And when I asked them to transform the affirmative sentences into negative ones, there was just one student who could do this.
At that moment, I realised that I have to teach them differently. So I created the following materials to help my students learn to use the verb HAVE GOT in affirmative and negative sentences. I hope I will be more successful this time, and that you will find these materials helpful too.
HAVE GOT – visual presentation
First I tried my usual graphic presentation with all the forms in a colourful table. This works great with gifted children. However, it did not work with my weak students:
As I write above, table like this was very good for talented students but not for the pupils with learning problems. They need something else. But what?
When we wrote a test on vocabulary 75% of them were able to learn all the words correctly. So why not teach them the verb and its forms as a vocabulary item. No fine deduction just a crude memory work. I believe that is the way. So I have created the following graphical presentations.
Ask your students to learn the forms by heart. Then ask them to use the phrases and write sentences to the pictures. If this proves too difficult write the five sentences randomly on the board and ask them to match them to the pictures and copy them.
Work in the same way with the negative sentences. In this way the students might comprehend the logic behind the forms or they will just remember the phrases and thus be able to use them.
HAVE GOT – classroom practise and worksheets
I usually give only a game or two here, but this time I see it necessary to offer a few activities the students could do in a classroom without the interactive whiteboard. Moreover, from my experience these children are not very good at the computer games and the quickly lose interest in them.
The first activity is called MT Board. I have create the following worksheet. At the top there is a table with the mother tongue sentences (the sentences are in Czech, so you have to change this one if you are not Czech). Below it there is the same table with the English sentences. Cut the English sentences along the lines and leave the mother tongue board intact. Ask the students to work in pairs and give them the Mother Tongue board and the English pieces. Ask them to place the pieces on the
board. Check their answers.
The second activity is called a pair card. Print out the following worksheet and cut it in the middle (from top down not from side to side). Ask the students to work in pairs. Each student gets 8 completed sentences and 8 sentences with gaps. Students read (they must not write anything) their gapped sentences and complete them with the correct forms of the verb HAVE GOT. Their partner listens and checks or corrects their answers (He/she has the full sentences). Once they finish they can swap their cards and start again.
The last classroom activity is a drill. Once you feel that your students got the hang of the grammar, you can play the following recording. The native speaker will say the subject and the students have to supply the correct form of the verb HAVE GOT in the pause. Each pause is followed by the correct form and another subject.
To download the file, right-click the following link and choose the option SAVE AS…
Have got_mp3 drill
HAVE GOT – Games
And finally here are the games for people who like to play them either on the interactive whiteboards, desktops or their mobile devices.
The game is called Basketball. This game is in flash and it will play only on your desktop.
Your task is to choose the correct form and then score a basket.