Deniz Erkan Deniz Erkan

Grammar Focus 4 - Be: Personal Questions
Elementary level


In this lesson, students learn about the copular verb -be, and Yes / No questions through reading and writing short sentences, and completing a variety of task-based and also student-centered activities including role playing and singing.


Abc Board and Marker
Abc Flashcards
Abc Cutting Edge - Third Edition Elementary Students' Book
Abc Pictures of celebrities

Main Aims

  • Reinforcing students' grammar skills with a simplified use of descriptive sentences and Yes / No questions.
  • To establish a base for auxiliary verbs with an introduction to the verb 'to be.'

Subsidiary Aims

  • To introduce a new way of asking questions with the familiarization of personal questions.
  • To help students differentiate between 'am-is-are.'


Warmer/Lead-in (3-5 minutes) • To set lesson context and elicit simple sentences and vocabulary from the students.

As a warm-up, the lesson starts with the teacher holding up pictures of five well-known celebrities (Bülent Ersoy, Kıvanç Tatlıtuğ, Daniel Radcliffe, Beyoncé Giselle Knowles-Carter, William Shakespeare) and sticking them on the board as the students progress. The goal is to elicit simple sentences and vocabulary from the students, and to lead the discussion to the Exposure Stage.

Exposure (8-10 minutes) • To introduce the target language to students through presentation and choral drilling.

The teacher quotes William Shakespeare to start the stage, sticking his picture to the board. "To be, or not to be, that is the question..." Next, he demonstrates a chart based on the Present Simple form of the verb 'to be' and utilizes subject pronouns to elicit the correct forms of the verb. Concept checking questions are asked. Shakespeare, William, and Cyrus Hoy. Hamlet. New York: W.W. Norton, 1996. Print. Accessed 4 July 2017.

Task (6-8 minutes) • To support the previously shown grammar structures by questions with written answers.

Students work solo, then, in pairs, and they are asked to answer the questions on the board on a sheet of paper handed out. Voluntary students ask other students questions. The answers will be shared with the whole class. Instruction checking questions Teacher is monitoring the students as they are writing.

Role Play (8-10 minutes) • To provide an opportunity to practice the given information on 'be' and Yes/No questions through acting and role playing.

The teacher lays down 10 flashcards with pictures of celebrities, and their full names, professions, and ages. Students are asked to pick a random card, and to act out their characters, speaking accordingly to the given information with creative comments. Instruction checking questions. Teacher is only monitoring without interrupting the students.

Task II (5-8 minutes) • To ensure that students can correctly use the target language.

The teacher demonstrates two different tasks related to verb 'be' and Yes / No questions, students complete the tasks as the teacher is monitoring. Students work in pairs. Concept checking questions. The teacher checks the answers with whole class.

Listen and Sing-Along (2-4 minutes) • To familiarize the students with the correct uses of 'be' by listening and singing along to a song.

The teacher plays a song on the computer, projecting the animated lyrics - solely based on am-is-are - on the board. Students are encouraged to sing along.

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