Back in the old days, when people wrote letters to each other, there was a distinct difference between formal and informal written English. Nowadays, people tend to use email rather than writing letters and the difference between the two styles have become blurred. This lesson plan focuses on the differences between formal and informal letter (or email) writing style. Another important aspect to writing style is choosing the right voice. In other words, which words and phrases are appropriate for a certain situation.
One of the challenges to teaching intermediate to advanced level classes is encouraging students to start using the vocabulary they've been learning. In other words, students understand the vocabulary, but they don't necessarily use it. This lesson plan provides activities to help students begin using a wider range of vocabulary. The lesson asks students to explore words that relate to expressing happiness. You might also find this guide to expressing enthusiasm or joy helpful as it provides language patterns for using this type of vocabulary.
Spring arrives on March 22. It might still seem like winter to many, but spring is just around the corner. Learn the different months and seasons, as well as which time words to use with each. For example, we say:
My birthday is in April.
My birthday is on April 23.
The use of in / on / at with time expressions can be confusing, so here's a guide to when to use these prepositions of time as well.
In the other room.
Because it costs too much.
We went to the show, and we had dinner, then we had a drink at a bar.
Each of the sentences has a mistake. The first sentence is a sentence fragment. The second needs another clause to make a complete sentence because it is a dependent clause. The third is a run on sentence. Learn more about the 10 most common sentence mistakes in English. These are often commonly used in speaking, but should be avoided in writing. If you are focusing on your writing, you can check out these 5 common writing mistakes, or the common mistakes in English page for other easily avoided mistakes.
Practice conversations give you the chance to first practice a conversation about a certain topic. Once you've done this, you can improve your English by having related conversations with other students or friends. Here are some helpful dialogue resources to get you started:
Collocations are words that go together with specific verbs or other words. Here are some examples:
Let's take a break.
She made the bed.
He does the housework on Saturdays.
I took a shower this morning.
These collections of combinations focus on and common words and expressions that go with the following verbs:
Catch, Pay, Keep
Come, Get, Feel
Miss, Get, Do, Make
Save, Find, Go
Take, Have, Break
One saying that I think is true is:
A picture is worth a thousand words.
I'd say this is certainly true. That's why I'm a big fan of using pictures of tense use to help explain usage. Here's an example with one use of the present perfect:
Here are 19 pictures that explain each tense, with multiple images for tenses with more than one use. Let your eyes do the explaining. Then follow up with a quiz to test your understanding. Teaching guides on how to teach each tense are also linked to from these pages.
Reading can improve your English in a variety of way. You can certainly learn a lot of new vocabulary through reading, as well as improve your fluency, but you can also use these suggested exercises:
Reading Tips to Improve Your Conversation Skills
Reading Tips to Improve Your Pronunciation
Reading Tips to Improve Your Vocabulary
Reading Tips to Improve Your Conversational Skills
Reading Tips to Improve Your Grammar
Reading Tips to Improve Your Listening Skills
Asking English learners to use quotes as a basis for discussion is a great way to encourage students to explore their own preconceived ideas and expectations while improving conversational skills. Through the process of trying to describe their interpretations of quotes, students need to stretch their speaking abilities. Here are three discussion lessons including ten quotes to use as the basis of conversation.
The gerund or 'ing' form is used in many different ways. For example, use a gerund as the subject of a sentence.
Learning English can be a lot of fun.
Gerunds can also be used following certain verbs.
Angela enjoys talking long walks in the woods.