Jessica Stockwell Jessica Stockwell

Language & Birthdays
Elementary level


In this first 45 minute lesson sts will be presented with a language focus on past simple of 'to be' in the context of birthdays.


Main Aims

  • The main aim is grammar focused on usage of the past simple 'to be' in the context of Birthdays.

Subsidiary Aims

  • to help students speak with accuracy through a drilling activity
  • To motivate sts to use their receptive skills, reading and listening, for meaning and understanding.


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

1. Welcome students and review names. 2. Have students call out the date and practice with them the date today and the date yesterday. This leads into the present and past simple of to be. This sets the stage for a drilling activity that the students are familiar with.

Grammar Introduction (8-10 minutes) • To provide context for the target language through a text or situation

DRILLING with - WAS | WERE | WASN'T | WEREN'T 1. Review 'present simple' through three images (apples) posted to the WB. 2. Introduce 'past simple' ' was and were' by adding another set of images (apples) and date 'yesterday' and short sentence highlighting past participle that will disappear. I'll proceed with same drilling technique that was successfully used in previous lesson with these students. 3. Add a time line to reinforce target language tense differences.

Target Language Intro with TEXT on WB (8-10 minutes) • To clarify the meaning, form and pronunciation of the target language

RUNNING DICTATION: This activity 'running dictation' is designed to introduce the target language in context of birthdays. (appendix 1) Sts will pair up and divide reading and writing tasks. This short dictation text includes upcoming vocabulary that is going to be heard in a listening exercise and helps sts use correct sentence structure and word form.

Controlled Practice (4-8 minutes) • To concept check and prepare students for more meaningful practice

LEXIS ADJECTIVES are introduced through a VOCABULARY building exercise. Sts are divided into 2 groups. They stand on both sides of a small table in middle of the room. 10 adjectives with opposites are pass to each side. They place them on the table and match them up. Monitoring to keep things moving along as necessary.

Semi-Controlled Practice (8-10 minutes) • To concept check further and prepare students for free practice

LISTENING: Listening for gist and then for detail. Sts listen to Rebecca talk about her 13th birthday. Lead questions posed by book for sts to underline details and understand them. Mini Fill in Gap with positive and negative of 'to be'

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

SPEAKING: In Pairs students ask each other about their birthdays and answer simple questions that will produce speaking in the past and using new vocabulary introduced in the presentation session. Students are exposed to the past tense and prepared to practice more in the next session.

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