TP 7
Upper-intermediate level


In this lesson students learn about past modals for deduction and criticism in the context of relationships and arguments. The lesson starts by exposing and highlight the language through a video and prediction activity. Next, students clarify the target language through a guided discovery task. Finally, students have the chance to practice using a gap-fill, sentence completion and freer speaking activity to consolidate their knowledge.


Abc Sticky Tack
Abc Whiteboard
Abc HO1
Abc HO1, part II
Abc Picture prompts
Abc Free Practice Pictures
Abc Answer Key
Abc Projector
Abc Speakers
Abc Sticky Tack
Abc Whiteboard
Abc Extra Paper

Main Aims

  • To provide clarification and practice of past modals for deduction and criticism in the context of relationships and arguments.

Subsidiary Aims

  • To provide fluency speaking practice in the context of relationships and arguments.


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

*Ss watch part of a youtube video of a couple fighting (01:00-01:40) and think about who they are and what might have happened. *Pause the video at 01:40 and have Ss take notes for about 30 seconds: who are they? what might have happened? *Ss compare ideas with a partner and come to a conclusion. *Monitor and listen for any TL being used or sentences that need to be reformulated to introduce the TL. *Take short w/c feedback: What happened? Elicit: They must have argued.

Exposure (5-5 minutes) • To provide context for the target language through a text or situation

*Ss discuss in groups of three or four why the couple "must have argued" and write 3-4 sentences per group. They have 3 minutes. *Monitor and note down any use of the TL or sentences which can be reformulated to introduce TL. *Play 2:10-02:15 for feedback on video and activity. Ask Ss to discuss in pairs what must have happened and elicit, "They must have broken up".

Highlighting (2-2 minutes) • To draw students' attention to the target language

*Elicit 3-4 sentences that Ss wrote in the previous stage and write on the whiteboard. *If Ss produce sentences in the simple past, write their sentences with gaps to elicit the past modal form. *If necessary use use pre-made sentences in simple past and write gaps for past modal form and elicit missing words. *Write sentence 1 from HO1, "They must have fought" and ask Ss to discuss in pairs: Are we sure they fought? When do we think they fought? *Take short w/c feedback

Clarification (8-8 minutes) • To clarify the meaning, form and pronunciation of the target language

*Give Ss HO1 with sentences using past modals and CCQs. Ask them to work in groups of three (or pairs) and discuss the questions in part A. *Ss then match the sentences with the headings in exercise B with the same partner. *Monitor and assist Ss if necessary. *Have early finishers write their answers on the whiteboard under each heading. If no early finishers, elicit from w/c. *Have Ss work in pairs and rearrange the jumbled sentences in exercise C. *Have fast finishers write their answers on the whiteboard. If no early finishers, display answers. *Ask: Can we separate must/might/may/can't/couldn't/should/shouldn't and have? (No! They always go together). Ask: What comes after "have"? (The past participle of the verb) *Drill for pronunciation and mark the linking and stressed words.

Controlled Practice (8-8 minutes) • To concept check and prepare students for more meaningful practice

*Tell Ss to rewrite parts of the conversation on the back side of HO1 with a partner. *Regroup Ss and give them 4 minutes to complete. *Have Ss work with another pair and act out of the dialogue and check their answers. *Display answers and take short w/c feedback: did any pairs have anything different?

Semi-Controlled Practice (8-8 minutes) • To concept check further and prepare students for free practice

*Give each table 1 picture with 2-3 prompts. Have Ss work in pairs and complete the prompts with their partner, writing on a separate piece of paper. They have 1 minute per picture. *After 1 minute have pairs move to the next picture/table and complete until all groups have seen all the pictures. *Monitor and note down language for delayed correction at the end of the lesson. *Display all the pictures and have Ss compare their sentences with another group. *Take short w/c feedback, were your sentences similar to the other group's?

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

*Put pictures around the room and instruct students to speak about what they think might have happened with their partner. *Ss look at each photo and write their sentence. *Monitor and note down any language for the feedback stage. *After Ss have looked at all the pictures, have them compare their sentences with another group. *After 8 minutes, instruct Ss to turn the papers over and check what actually happened. *Take w/c feedback, how many were similar to the sentences you wrote? *Write language heard for delayed error correction and elicit correct sentences.

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