So, this lesson is designed to be taught as a follow up to teaching the dreaded verb patterns (stop, remember, forget, regret, try). I usually bring this out a few days after they’ve been taught. But it can also be used as part of a test, teach, test type lesson. If the students read it for errors before you teach these verbs and then reread it again at the end, they’re generally delighted that they can now identify the mistakes that completely eluded them at the beginning of the lesson. You can’t argue with that type of in-your-face improvement.
The main idea is to check their understanding of the differences between the gerund and infinitive versions of these verbs but also to get them to analyse language in a text and not just skim over it. The awwwwww moment when they realise that something they’ve happily read 3 or 4 times is riddled with errors is always fun to be a part of.
Materials: Smoking – gerunds and inf story
Feel free to do any sort of lead in about vices, smoking or health or to change the end of the story if you think it’s too depressing (although I find that happy stories don’t really generate much discussion in classrooms). I also think that the vocab sections are pretty run of the mill and there’s nothing special there really.
The interesting part is when you’ve finished discussing the topic and examining the vocab and you ask the students to go back and read the text for errors. You can then get them to underline all of the gerunds and infinitives in the text and decide which ones are correct and which ones need to be changed. The real kicker is when both are possible but have slightly different meanings.