Tom Tom

TP 7- Grammar- Simple past forms of be
A1/A2 Elementary level


In this lesson, we will be introducing the past tense form of 'be' within the context of peoples' life stories. Students will identify the forms within the lesson and then use it to ask and answer questions. There will be some gap filling exercises to reinforce students knowledge of appropriate use and then the final productive activity to put what they have learned into practice.


Abc Quiz Hand out
Abc Task 4-5 handout
Abc Task 1 2 3 handout
Abc Audio 7.1 and 7.2

Main Aims

  • To provide clarification of the form and use of the simple past form of the verb 'be' within the context of talking about peoples' life stories.

Subsidiary Aims

  • For students to use past simple forms of be accurately within a conversation about their life story.


Introducing context of life stories (8 minutes) • For students to become engaged within the context through a quiz.

Instructions- 1.In pairs, do the quiz. (Show quiz) 2. You have 5 minutes. ICQ- Are you working on your own? 2. Now listen and check your answers. Listen to CD. Repeat if students need.

Introduce past simple form of be meaning, forms and pronunciation through discovery learning (7 minutes) • For students to start to identify the forms of the past tense of the verb be.

Write was/ were on the board. Hand out Task 1/2 sheet Instructions. Task 1- 1. Find was/were in the quiz. (Show quiz). 2. Underline them. 3. Work in pairs. You have 2 minutes 1. Look at task 2. (Show Sheet) 2. Look at the examples of was/were. 3. In pairs, fill in the gaps. 4. You have 5 mins. Feedback- Will be given during the next activity. Monitor group talk and help students to correct any misconceptions.

Clarification of forms through student focussed WB activity. (10 minutes) • For students to demonstrate understanding and for the teacher to correct errors.

Split board into 3 sections Meaning/Form/pronunciation with the title past simple: was/were. Meaning- Draw two timelines. One showing the correct meaning of past simple was. Form- A large form of the table in the previous task with mistakes. Instructions- 1. Look at this board it is wrong. 2. In groups, talk about how to correct it. 3. You have 3 minutes. ICQ- Is the board correct? Monitor as groups discuss what needs to be changed. Draw their attention to their previous work. 3. Now come and correct it. ( Hand pens to 2 or 3 students, change in the middle). Once it is complete- CCQs- I was a student. Is this now or in the past? She was a baby. Is this now or in the past? Do any error correction required then move to pronunciation. Pronunciation-Drill example sentence. Write and mark weak form of was and were.

Controlled written practice of past simple forms of be. (6 minutes) • For students to start to appropriately select simple past forms of b within a controlled activity.

Instructions- 1. Look at task 3 2. Fill in the gaps. Give example from sheet on WB. 3. Work on your own you have 5 minutes. Then prompt students to complete 3b and then partner check. Feedback answers A. Were/Weren't B. Wasn't/Was C. Wasn't/Was Listen to examples of students' sentences do error correction if needed.

Preparation for free practice activity (6 minutes) • For students to complete questions using the past simple of be that can be used in a free practice.

Instructions- 1. Look at task 2a. 2. Fill in the gaps with was or were. Complete example on the board Where WERE you born? 3. Work in pairs. You have 4 minutes. Feedback with audio. 1. Listen to CD 2. Check your answers

Free speaking practice using past simple forms of be (10 minutes) • For students to apply learning from the lesson and a final chance for error correction.

Instructions- 1.Look at task 3 (show sheet and point to task) 2. Talk to your partner 3. Ask them these questions(point to 2a) They will answer. 4. Then swap over. Do demo with a student elicit an answer. Monitor student responses error correct of note down for delayed feedback. Swap partners for extra practice. Feedback- hear some examples and comment/error correct as necessary.

Plenary- If time allows (3 minutes) • To draw together the learning from this lesson.

Instructions: 1. In groups, speak about your life story. 2. Use was/were. Example: When I was a baby I was very quiet. As I got older, I was very talkative. 3. You have 3 minutes. Monitor and give feedback

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