What We Know What We Don’t Know
1. Make a list of all the verbs the learners know, and after demonstrate how to make them progressive, ask learners to make sentences.
Compare the Simple Present with the Continuous Present
Ask the learners to write sentences like that and then read them aloud.
I speak Spanish everyday, but now I am speaking English.
What Are They Doing?
Have learners form sentences in the present progressive describing what actions are taking place in an image (they can be drawn, or come from books, newspapers, comics or magazines).
This activity can be used to familiarize students with thematic vocabulary by using images relating to work, health care, etc.
Another nice variation on this activity which can be used for getting to know each other if everyone brings in images of family and friends, and describe who is in the picture, what their names are, where they are, and what they are doing.
It might be useful to provide some familiar words, and/or ask the question “What is he/she doing?” while displaying each image.
Asking learners to write their sentences on the board is good for confidence building, but if people still seem weary about spelling, they can write them on paper, the facilitator can collect them and return them with corrections.
Drill the structure with a worksheet.
Who is doing what?
Learners raise their hands in response to questions about what they will be doing in the future.
Who is doing laundry tomorrow? Who is cleaning tomorrow?
What’s Your Schedule?
Each person writes down five times of the day (e.g. 7 am, 8:45 am, 1 pm, 5:15 pm, 10:00 pm).
Everyone pairs up, and each person looks at his or her partner’s schedule and asks, What are you doing tomorrow at ____ o’clock?
This activity can be done as a continuation of activity 3.
(Beginning and Intermediate Levels)
To identify people and objects:
Singular This is my pencil. That is (that’s) your book.
Plural These are my students. Those are my classmates.
Common phrases (Spring 2002 Sara & Olivia):
What’s all this?
What’s this about?
What was that?
Days like this make me sad.
That makes me sad.
Note from EFA Grammar Curriculum Fall 2002: Avoid teaching This, That, These and Those all in the same class because it could be confusing. First teach this and that, and then teach these and those at a later time using plural pronouns. Then integrate the two concepts once students have mastered each one.
Make two groups of pictures (with old vocabulary) and hang them on the wall.
Model the activity: This is a girl (point to picture close to you). That is a boy (point of picture far from you). Have students mimic.
As a variation, repeat this activity with classroom objects – this is a good opportunity to introduce some more vocabulary.
Another variation can be to identify things with groups of adjectives, for size, color, shape or anything else.
Comparing Images around the Room:
Hand out a set of pictures of people with opposite qualities (e.g. old man and young man, tall woman and short woman, etc.).
Everyone places a picture somewhere in the classroom.
People walk around the room until the facilitator calls “stop”, at which point each person finds the picture closest to him and describes it using “this” as well as a picture far from him and describes it using “that.”
This person is young. That woman is tall.
Practice this/these pronunciation distinction – find rhymes (this/kiss, miss; these/ cheese, please, he’s).
All the exercises used for this/that can be used for these/those; just switch the subjects of the exercise from singular to plural.
Possessive Case and Adjectives
Possessive form of nouns:
To indicate possession, we say first the name of the person who possesses the object. We put an apostrophe and ‘s’ ( ’s).
Singular noun: add apostrophe + -s, e.g. father father’s
Plural noun ending in –s: add apostrophe only, e.g. girls girls’
Irregular plural noun NOT ending in –s: add apostrophe + -s, e.g. children children’s
While teaching these topics, make sure to pace yourself, teaching first the possessive case and then possessive adjectives.
Most of the activities described can be modified to teach either grammar point.
Subject Posssesive Adjective Possessive Pronoun
I my mine
You your yours
He his his
She her hers
It its -----
We our ours
They their theirs
Who whose whose
How do we relate?
Have students draw a family tree with at least 5 family members and then describe relationships between various relatives.
Pedro is Oscar’s cousin. Oscar is Miguel’s brother.
After students grasp possessive form, have them use possessive adjectives.
Pedro is his cousin ; Miguel is his brother.
Whose is that?
Each student puts an object in the middle of the table.
Everyone takes something that doesn’t belong to them.
People say who their object belongs to and ask someone else in the class who his object belongs to.
The comb is Fernando’s. Fernando, whose scarf is that?
Whose shoe is this?
Everyone takes off a shoe and puts it in the middle of the table.
Person A picks up a shoe and asks someone, “Whose shoe is this?”
That person answers or guesses, saying “It is hers.” or “It is Claudia’s.”
Person A turns to the shoe owner and confirms, “Is this your shoe?” and the owner responds, “Yes it is mine.”
Aldo se olvidó su libro.
Aldo forgot ____ book.
Julio y Thelma aman a sus nietos.
Julio and Thelma love ______ grandchildren.
Esta aula pertenece a todos nosotros. Es nuestra aula.
This classroom belongs to all of us. It’s _______ classroom.
Esta es mi hija. La quiero mucho.
This is _____ daughter. I love her very much.
¿Dónde está mi pluma? No puedo encontrarla.
Where is _______ pen? I can’t find it.
Esto pertenece a mi, es mío.
This belongs to me, it’s _______.
Este libro pertenece a mi padre. Es suyo.Esta cucharra pertenece a ella. Es suya.
This book belongs to my father. It’s _________. This spoon belongs to her. It’s _______.
Esa carpeta pertenece a Gaby y Sasha. Es de ellas.
That carpet belongs to Gaby and Sasha. It’s ________.
Este carro pertenece a mi y mi esposa. Es de nosotros.
This car belongs to me and _____ wife. It’s _________.
(Gaby - Beginner A, October 12, 2002)