Past Modals – Video Tutorial – Quiz




Practice the use of Past Modals

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How to learn new words – Memrise

We all know that when it comes to learning a foreign language, the biggest question we face is how to learn new words, or to be more precise, how not to forget them. It's been scientifically proven that we forget 80% of new information within 24 hours. Hermann Ebbinghaus was the first to study the process of forgetting and he introduced "the forgetting curve".   The obvious way to avoid such a drastic information loss is properly-timed revision. By regular revision we slow down the Read more [...]

Money and Shopping ESL – Ka-Ching Shania Twain – English with Songs

I've wanted to create a presentation of the lesson plan based on the song "Ka-ching" for a while, since I often use it to add some more fun to the topic of shopping and money. It's a good source of money  vocabulary, as well as ideas for discussion.    That's how I'd use it in class: 1. Brainstorm adjectives and verbs that collocate with the word "money".  Teach some new words, if necessary.    2. Tell the students that they're going to listen to a song called "Ka-Ching". Read more [...]

You can learn anything (Listening task)

Have you heard of Khan Academy? It's an amazing organisation that stands for free high quality education in all the world. You can study math, science, computer programming, history, art, economics absolutely free on their professional online courses.  I'd like to share an inspiring video from the Khan Academy and use it as a listening task. Watch the video, listen carefully and fill in the missing words in the text below.     What do you think? Do you believe Read more [...]

The surprising truth about what motivates us – ESL lesson plan – TED talk

1. A traditional way of motivating people at school and at work is a carrot and stick approach. The "carrot and stick" approach is an idiom that refers to a policy of offering a combination of rewards and punishment to induce behavior. It is named in reference to a cart driver dangling a carrot in front of a mule and holding a stick behind it. The mule would move towards the carrot because it wants the reward of food, while also moving away from the stick behind it, since it does not want the punishment Read more [...]

TV series for learning English – a waste of time?

Are you one of the awesome English learners who watch TV-series to improve their skills? Then you already know how much you benefit from this simple activity. you get exposed to real, authentic pronunciation and words usage you train your listening skills you have fun and study at the same time   BUT    Ask yourself how much of the episode do you understand by listening only?  how much do the pictures help you? can you retell any of the dialogs or jokes? how Read more [...]

Roar – Katy Perry – ESL lesson plan

The song "Roar" perfectly fits the topic of gender roles/stereotypes, feminism. Besides, it's a great source of idioms, set expressions and phrasal verbs.  That's how I would use it in class. 1. Tell the students that we're going to study 7 new expressions (slides 2-4). Having introduced them, I'd ask some questions to use them in speech. 1. Can you think of a moment when you wanted to speak up, but had to hold your tongue? 2. Are you the kind of person who rocks the boat or holds his/her Read more [...]

8 graded books for upper-intermediate and advanced level

In one of the previous posts I recommended 8 graded books for pre-intermediate and intermediate levels. Now it's time to give out more of the books I consider really worth reading. All the books are accompanied by audio, which makes it a perfect combination for developoing reading and listening skills.  Clicking on the title of the book will lead you to a webpage where you can download the book with the audio for free. Just click the read button "descargar". You may need to register there Read more [...]

The Seven Ages of Man – Conversation and Reading ESL lesson

Ever since I came across a beautiful reading of "All the world's a stage" by Benedict Cumberbatch I've wanted to make a conversational, not-too-deep-into-poetry lesson. As most of my students are busy adults, I was almost convinced they would hate to spend the lesson reading Shakespeare. Fortunately, I dared to give the lesson described below, and I was pleasantly surprised to find a lot of enthusiasm, interest and appreciation of this wonderful piece of poetry. Discussion 1. Think of stages a Read more [...]

The sound of Present Perfect

Present Perfect is one of my favourite grammar points, because it presents the biggest challenge for my students and me. I always have to think of new ways to show how it works and how it is an always present part of oral and written speech. Once you've come to grips with the form and typical uses, it's important to become aware of this tense when you hear it. It also can be quite difficult to understand present perfect in quick speech. You need to realize that the part "have, has, haven't, hasn't" Read more [...]