sibel sibel

To be: past form/affirmative/negative
Beginner level


In this lesson students are presented and get to practise the simple past of "to be" in its positive and negative forms, in the context of the place of work.


Abc Pictures (for lead-in task)
Abc Reading Text
Abc Listening Track
Abc Listening task handout
Abc Pictures with words (freer practice task)

Main Aims

  • To present and practise the simple past of "to be" (positive and negative forms) in the context of the place of work.

Subsidiary Aims

  • To develop productive skills (speaking)


Warmer/Lead-in (3-5 minutes) • To set lesson context (place of work) and engage students (group discussion pictures)

-T organises small groups (four). -T gives instructions for lead-in task: shows pictures, asks students to discuss the pictures ("where are they?") -T asks each group, writes on WB "at a meeting, "in hospital", "on holiday", "busy".

Reading task (8-10 minutes) • To practise reading for gist + introduce the TL

-T gives instructions for reading task: shows handout, tells students to quickly read and answer two questions (writes on WB: how many people in the text? is it about the present or the past?) Work alone -I C Q 's : you read slowly or quickly? quickly. Work alone or in pairs? Alone. -Time limit: one minute. -T asks students to check with partner. -T asks WC answers (how many? 6. Names? Present or past? Why?)

Highlighting (3-6 minutes) • To draw students' attention to the target language

-T asks students to underline verbs and circle subjects in the text (demo on WB). -T asks students to check with partner. (T writes sentences on WB: three people were at the meeting, I was there..) -T asks WC verbs and subjects (underlines and circles on WB).

Clarifying TL + Listening Task (10-15 minutes) • To clarify the meaning, form and pronunciation of the target language

T clarifies meaning: is it present or past? today or yesterday? T clarifies pron: repeats the sentences, marks stress, highlights weak form T clarifies form: corner of WB (I was, you were..) eliciting from students. Back to the sentences, T asks what is the negative form of was and were, writes on WB, work on pron again (focus on weak form of "wasn't" and "weren't). -Following the pron work on "wasn't" and "weren"t, T gives instructions for listening task: shows handout, tells students they will listen to the CD, listen carefully and choose was or wasn't, were or weren't (demo on WB, T circles to show how they choose) -I C Q: talk or listen? listen. Circle? was or wasn't.. -T gives students some time to read, then 3,2,1 listen. -T makes them listen again if necessary. -Check with partner. -Writes answers on WB (they self check). -If not clear, T does a bit of pron again.

Freer Practice (8-10 minutes) • To provide freer oral practice and use of the language productively

-T sticks pictures on WB + writes "you weren't at the meeting yesterday. Why?" -T gives instructions for freer practice activity: asks one student to come at the board, points at the question (encourages the student to ask me the question), answers (for ex: I am sorry, I was in hospital, points at picture), then switches roles (T asks, student answers using a picture from the board). T sends the student back to his seat. I C Q: one angry boss, one sorry employee, talk and change. -T organises pairs (angry boss/ sorry employee), start! -T monitors (listens to pairs, makes sure they use TL correctly. -If time left, make them change partners (mingling)

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