Present not so simple

I’ve often wondered about the logic of teaching present simple to beginners. It is the most complex and fiddly tense to get right. If proof were needed, how many high level students still make mistakes with it? Yet we ask beginners and elementary students to struggle with this tense, their first.

Of course, I know why we focus on this tense. It has to be done. The present is the logical starting point. It doesnt make it any easier for our poor students though.

This lesson aims to try to solidify those rules, and also offer reading skills practice and some vocabulary work. The context is someone talking about their likes and dislikes looking for a flatmate. The final task is about them leaving a voice message with the opportunity for some controlled and free practice.

Here is a copy of the text.

Hi there!
I’m looking for a social friendly fun flatshare with people my age. I currently live in Dalston east london and looking to move south. New cross, Brockley or Deptford. £650 pcm is my absolute budget and I would like a double room.

I work 9-5 at a housing trust and volunteer youth working on the weekends. Keeps me pretty busy but i love having flatmates i can have a drink and socialise with. I love going out to eat, exploring fun bars, stand up comedy, watching good films and experiencing all london has to offer. Looking to share with liberal minded, interesting people. Not into having separate culterly or leaving notes around the home, not a neat freak but clean. I also love animals so cats and dogs is not a problem for me! I’m a smoker so I’d need somewhere I could smoke but happy to go outside.
Thanks in advance!

Enjoy and let us know how it goes

Aim: practice present tenses

Level: Elementary +

Procedure:

Pre reading task

1.1 Chat about flats, ask students to think of what they want when they move to a place?

1.2 Ask about what they they want the people they live with to be like?

Vocab

2.1 Do vocab match and check as a class

Grammar focus

3.1 Look at the Present simple practice exercise, checking together.

3.2 Look at the rules and help the students by monitoring

Production

Target: to record a voice message that they could leave on Sarah’s phone

4.1 Ask the students to think whether they would like to live with Sarah

4.2 Ask them to complete the plan for a phone call and add any extra parts they choose

4.3 Ask the students to record it and email it to you

Materials: word doc: present-not-so-simple

PDF: present-not-so-simple

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