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Feel free to send your ideas to my email: / To use the lesson plans in my blog, you do NOT need photocopies for students. You MAY need to print instructions or to use a projector and/or a computer.

Browse LABELS to the right, underneath to find prompts and tasks.New!! VIDEO BLOGS on English for Communications and on English for Office Applications (Computers). See links below.

* English for Communications. Click HERE. By Beatriz Papaseit Fernández and myself, María Zabala Peña

* English for Office Applications (Computers :Word 2007 and more). Click HERE. By Beatriz Papaseit Fernández and myself, María Zabala Peña

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Small talk questions

Level: any level but students need to know how to ask basic questions about other people's job (where do you work?, marital status (Do you have a husband/wife?, everyday activities (Where do you usually eat lunch? ) ...
Material: provided video + provided teachers' pack with questions for students. PHOTOCOPIES FOR STUDENTS ARE NECESSARY

Click HERE to access the video and teachers' pack


A)this is NOT an activity without photocopies and therefore is not located in this blog. I have a blog for students in vocational training programmes. This is the blog where you will find the materials.

b) the teachers' pack contains possible answers for exercises. These answers have been designed for students in vocational training. You will have to adapt the answers to a high school setting if your students are not adults. The questions are the same for teenagers and adults.

Click HERE to access the video and teachers' pack

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Sarah’s terrible day. Third conditional drill practice

Purpose: practice of:

Materials: a print out of the story (see below)

Teachers read the story:

1. Students write each problem and its corresponding result on the board

EXAMPLE: Her alarm didn't go off – she overslept.

2. Students imagine Sarah had a good morning and use the third conditional:
If her alarm had gone off, she wouldn't have overslept.

Pairs of students make third conditional sentences with the remaining examples.


Sarah had to be at the airport for her flight at 9am, but her alarm didn't go off and she overslept. She got dressed very quickly, threw everything into her suitcase and ran out of the house.

When she got to the airport she realised she had forgotten her passport. So she jumped in a taxi and returned home. She grabbed her passport from the coffee table, got in a taxi and went back to the airport.

One mile from the airport the taxi broke down. She tried to flag down another, but they were all taken and so she ran the rest of the way.

When she arrived at the airport, she saw that she had missed her flight. She had to pay 500 dollars for another ticket for the next flight.

While she was waiting, she went to buy a book. She was so preoccupied with her difficult morning that she walked out of the shop without paying and was arrested by the police.

The police detained her for three hours and she missed her flight again. Sarah went home and decided never to fly again!

Adapted by Maria Zabala

What's the question?

Level: Any Level
Purpose: review question forms previously studied in class

Option A for smaller classes ( up to 20 students)
Option B for larger classes

REMEMBER: its is important to simulate the game once before the real competition starts.

Option A)
Form two teams (three will also work, but two seems to add just the right amount of competitive tension).

1. Have two players--one from each team--come to the front. Style it like a game show if you like, with the students standing side-by-side. If you have access to bells or buzzers, it's even more fun.

2.Next, read an answer to a question and say, 'What's the question?' The fastest player to respond wins a point for her/his team. New contestants come to the front for a new round.

Option B)
If your class is too big for option A, make groups.
Ensure you have at least 4 teams of between 5 and 6 students.

1. Each group creates a list of possible answers. The teacher (of a student ) gives answers of group 1 to group 2, group 2 to group 3…clockwise

This way every group has a set of answers that was created by another group.

2. Nominate: 1 person in each group as the moderator

The moderator acts as the teacher: he/she reads the answer and the other 5 say/ write the possible questions

3. Set a time. When the teacher sees some groups have finshed, each group passes the set of answers to the next group, clockwise. Nominate a different student as moderator. Repeat as long as students are working

Source :
Submitted by: Tim
Adapted by Maria Zabala

Looks: Can you find what is different?

Level: Easy

Ideal for revising and accessory and clothing vocabulary (ring, necklace)
Option A) for small classes. Ask a volunteer to go out of the classroom. While the student is out of the room, the other students change their sweaters, shoes, coats and so on. Bring the student who went out of the classroom back inside. He/she has to guess the differences in other students' appearances (speaking in English, of course.)

Option B) for larger classes. To make this easier to manage, ensure you have teams of 5 or 6 students. Groups have 1 minute to look at everybody in their team. One person in every team leaves and the other remaining students have to make 3 changes.
Let students decide if they change back to their original clothes after each round.

Repeat the exercise until students are tired (about 3 times)

Submitted by: Raquel Fiol
Adapted by Maria Zabala

Fold-over stories

Level: Any Level.

Students need to know question words
Procedure: Give each student a sheet of blank paper. Write the following words on the board one under the other: WHO?, WHAT ?, HOW ?, WHERE ?, WHEN ?, WHY ?

Explain that everyone will be writing a sentence story.

1. Tell students to write someone's name at the top of their paper, e.g. their own, a classmate's, the teacher's, a famous person that everyone knows.

2. Students fold the paper over once so that no one can see the name, then pass the paper to the person on their right.

3. Students write on the received paper what the subject did (suggest funny or outrageous actions), fold it over and pass it on to the right.

4. Students answer the next question (where?) fold the sheet and pass it to the right.

5. Repeat with the remaining question words.

6. Have the students unfold their stories, and read them silently. Help anyone who cannot read what the others wrote, or doesn't understand.

7. Ask one student at a time to read "their" story aloud and vote for the funniest.

Submitted by: Vicki Konzen