Heather Heather

TP7: Time Phrases in the Past
Pre-Intermediate level


In this lesson, students learn how to use time phrases with at, on, in, and ago in the context of memories. Students read a short text for specific information to set the context and get familiar with how time phrases are used. Then, students discover the meaning, form, and pronunciation of these phrases and practice using them correctly by choosing the correct preposition to include in sentences and by interviewing one another about the last time they did something.


Abc p.18 from New Cutting Edge Pre-Intermediate
Abc TP 7_8 PowerPoint
Abc p. 14 in New Cutting Edge Pre-Intermediate WorkBook

Main Aims

  • To provide students with clarification and practice with using time phrases in the past in the context of memories

Subsidiary Aims

  • To provide students with practice with reading for specific information in the context of memories
  • To provide students with speaking practice in the context of memories


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

T shows pictures from summer camp and asks Ss what they think it is. T tells Ss to give a thumbs up if they have been to summer camp. T nominates one of two Ss to share about their experience.

Presentation through Text (6-8 minutes) • To provide context for the target language through a text or situation

T shares a written story about her experience with summer camp and has Ss complete a reading for specific information activity on Google Forms. T puts link in chat and tells Ss, "Click on the link in the chat. You will have 4 minutes read the story and answer the questions. T demos first question with Ss. Ss complete task individually and then check in pairs before OCFB.

Highlighting (2-4 minutes) • To draw students' attention to the target language

T points out the time phrases and asks Ss, "Do the bolded phrases refer to the past, the present, or the future? (the past) Do they answer the question Who, what, or when? (when). " These are time phrases that we use to refer to the past.

Clarification (8-10 minutes) • To clarify the meaning, form and pronunciation of the target language

T puts link in chat and instructs Ss: "Open the link in the chat. What part of speech are the words in yellow? (prepositions). Match the prepositions with the correct times or dates, pictures, and descriptors. You can refer to the story for help." Ss work together in breakout rooms to match phrases from the reading to their meaning and form in Google Jamboard. T reviews answers and uses relevant CCQ's to check understanding T uses hands to show specific and period of time when asking- Does at refer to a specific time or a period of time? (specific time) Does on refer to a specific day or a period of days? (specific day) Does in refer to a specific time or a period of time? (period of time) Does ago refer to a specific event? (yes, a specific event that happened in the past). Form: “Which is correct: ago 4 years or 4 years ago?" (4 years ago) T shows PPT slide on pronunciation. T reads phrases: in 2016, in the afternoon and asks Ss, "Does my voice rise or fall?" (it rises), T shows diagrams with slight fall before rising intonation- T reads phrases: four years ago, one week ago and asks Ss, "Does my voice rise or fall?" (it falls), T shows diagrams with slight rise before falling intonation. T Treads phrases In 2016, In the afternoon and asks Ss, “Where is the stress?” T shows boxes above stressed syllables. T asks, "Are the stressed syllables when my voice is high or low?" (high). T does the same for four years ago and one week ago. T models and drills these phrases with Ss.

Controlled Practice (5-7 minutes) • To concept check and prepare students for more meaningful practice

T sets controlled practice activity on Google Forms "Click on the link in the chat. Choose the correct preposition for each sentence." T demos task by eliciting answer to 1st question from Ss. "You have 3 minutes." Ss work on their own, then compare in breakout rooms before OCFB. T conducts quick OCFB, focusing on problem areas.

Freer Practice (8-10 minutes) • To provide students with freer practice of the target language

T gives each Ss a link to an individual Google Doc. T instructs Ss to fill in the chart for 2 minutes. Then, they will go to breakout rooms and ask and answer questions with their partner using the information from their chart. T monitors breakout rooms and helps Ss as needed. T notes down language for content feedback and DEC.

Delayed Error Correction (3-5 minutes) • To raise learners' awareness of language production through delayed error correction

T shares a few correct and incorrect phrases from the freer practice activity. Ss identify which are correct and incorrect and T elicts correction/reformulation from Ss.

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