Nevin Dogan Nevin Dogan

Intermediate level


In this lesson, students learn how to talk about their abilities. They will discover how and when to use a set of functional phrases expressing different levels of abilities. The lesson is based on a TTT approach. The lesson starts with a quiz (How computer literate are you?) in which students are tested on their understanding of the range of phrases defining abilities. They then have to discover themselves which categories these ability phrases correspond to (things you can do now, things you can't do now, ability in the past). With the help of the quiz text as a basis for the lesson, the sts find out how these phrases are formed. The sts are then tested again at the end of the lesson with a gap-fill text. If time allows, sts will get to practice the acquired grammatical structures through a freer practice.


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Main Aims

  • To provide clarification, review and practice of ability phrases and forms in the context of computers

Subsidiary Aims

  • To provide scan and deduction reading practice using a text about computer literacy, in order to enable sts to discover the different uses of ability phrases by themselves


Warmer/Lead-in (3-5 minutes) • To set lesson context and engage students

To start the lesson I will tell a story about my father and technology (how he used to be very bad at it but now he's gotten a lot better than me at it). Then I will ask sts about their own abilities when it comes to technology and computers. Are you good with new technologies? Can you use a computer? Are you good at it? Can you use several computer programmes? Which computer programmes can you use? Could you use them several years ago? Can you use any other new technologies? etc...

Test #1 (8-10 minutes) • To gauge students' prior knowledge of the target language

In order to find out sts' previous knowledge of ability phrases I will give them a quiz in which they have to choose between three answers for each question, with answers expressing a different level of ability. Following this I will project on the WB the results to the quiz, get sts to read them and discuss with their partner if they agree with the description of themselves.

Teach (13-15 minutes) • To clarify areas of the target language where students had difficulty in the first test stage

The quiz text will be used as a basis to teach them the form and meaning of these ability phrases. I will give them HO2 and tell them to focus on the top part only. They will discuss in groups and fill in the categories in the table, using the highlighted verbs and phrases from the quiz. Then for FB I will get one student from each group to come up to the WB and fill one category (things you can do now, things you can't do now, ability in the past). I will check with sts if there are any answers and get them to correct themselves if there are any. Then the sts will work in pairs and decide how to structure the ability phrases, they will unfold the HO2 and look at the bottom part in which they have to decide on the form to use. For FB I will project the answers on the WB. I will then concept check and make sure they understand what each expression means. In order to CCQ the word manage, I will project a sentence and two questions on the WB about this sentences and give sts one or two minutes to discuss them. Quick FB (1- Yes he/she did; 2- It was difficult). I will also ask them what other adjectives they can use with the structure be + adjective + at (be brilliant/great/excellent/not bad to say people are good at something and be hopeless/bad/terrible/awful/rubbish at to say people are bad at sth). I will then drill the sentences to make sure they are stressing them at the right place, and make sure they copy the weak forms of to and at.

Test #2 (6-7 minutes) • Check students' use of the target language again and compare with the first test

I will then give sts HO3 (gap-fill activity), and give them a minute to read it and tell me what Bill is doing now (he teaches retired people basic computer skills). Then I will tell sts to use the forms we have learnt previously, and check in pairs once they have finished. For FB I will tell them to look under their chairs, there'll be two AKs per table.

Free practice (9-10 minutes) • To provide students with free practice of the target language

I will then get sts to write 3 true sentences and 3 false sentences about other things they can and can't do, using a different phrase from exercise 2 of HO2 for each sentence. Then I will get them to work in pairs and tell their partners their sentences. The partner can ask two questions about each sentence and then decides if these sentences are true or false. I will give instruction little by little and use ICQs.

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