Category Archives: Functional language

New teaching like and would like page

A year or so after publishing an article on comparing and practising like for preferences and would like for desires, I’ve finally got enough worksheets up to make it worth its own page on TEFLtastic: Like and would like games/ … Continue reading

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30 new TEFL articles and worksheets (Spring 2016)

A fairly typical amount of new stuff on Usingenglish.com and on TEFLtastic, though in my humble opinion the quality is getting a little better all the time… Help and Hindrance in IELTS Listening Whose is this Whose are these Possessives personalised … Continue reading

Posted in Cambridge First Certificate, past tenses, Photocopiable worksheets, possessive s, Requests | Leave a comment

New small talk games/ worksheets page

My Business English students often complain that the most difficult part of using English in their jobs is not making presentations or chairing meetings but the networking, chatting and bumping into people in the lift that can happen before and afterwards. There … Continue reading

Posted in Business English and ESP, Cultural differences/ cultural training, Photocopiable worksheets, Social English | Leave a comment

Getting more complex language from your students Part Two

The follow up to this article, also published in English Teaching Professional. Given the likelihood that your students often communicate with people who have a lower level of English than they do, there is much to be said for even … Continue reading

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Getting students to use more complex functional language

An expanded version of an article of mine just published in English Teaching Professional magazine as Keep Moving On Part One – available here on TEFLtastic for free! One of the best language learning tips that I have used and passed … Continue reading

Posted in Apologies, English Teaching Professional, Functional language, interrupting, Requests, TEFL games | Leave a comment

How to really teach imperatives

Updated 29 October 2018 Back in the bad old days of New Cambridge English Course and its like, most courses had a completely pointless unit teaching students to say “Turn off the lights” and “Don’t touch the paint”. That is … Continue reading

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Would functional language by any other name smell as unsweet?

The stats on my functional language classroom materials page have taken a brief blip upwards in the last few days. Perhaps because I’m a glass half empty kinda guy (when I’m not an “Are you looking at my pint?” kinda … Continue reading

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Teaching comparing/ contrasting

The comparatives and superlatives page is consistently the most popular part of this blog, but personally I rarely teach those two as isolated language points any more. Instead, I’ve moved onto combining “-er” and “more…” with “much”, “quite a lot” etc, plus even … Continue reading

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Key words card games (TEFLtastic classics Part 19)

This is another game which will feature prominently in my upcoming article in EtP magazine on getting students to use more complex language. Students are given a pack of cards with key words for one or more functions on them, … Continue reading

Posted in clarifying, Functional language, interrupting, TEFL games | Tagged | Leave a comment

Teaching hedging/ generalising

I don’t know if my thinking as well as my language is being affected by my favourite Janglish, but just two weeks after going crazy for advantages and disadvantages/ looking at both sides, I’ve got a new “my boom”. It’s … Continue reading

Posted in Language of generalisation | Leave a comment