A Special Occasion

A multi-skill worksheet that incorporates speaking, listening, reading and writing, based on a short (1:22) BBC news video about a 100th birthday trip to London. Aimed at E3 / L1, but suitable for higher level E2 and for L2 as a recap (for L2 - elicit examples of the grammar and instructions beforehand).

Key learning outcomes: learners will:

  • ask questions, make notes about the answers and report the answers;
  • read text about a celebration and answer questions; 
  • find information in a text; 
  • use context to identify the meaning of unfamiliar words;
  • identify past tense verbs in a text;
  • follow instructions;
  • make a list of classroom instructions;
  • write a paragraph, using past tense verbs, to describe a celebration;
  • use at least one negative past tense verb. 

There are six activities: Q&A / discussion; listening / reading (the video is captioned) for gist and detail; vocabulary - synonyms and slang; grammar - past tense verbs; classroom instructions. Also, two homework tasks: writing - past tense recounts.  Activities include pair work, small group, whole class discussion and individual work, as well as a homework task. A worked answer is included for teachers, with planning guidance. The topic is a birthday celebration, using past tense verbs - a useful recap at L1 or above or introduction at upper E2 /  E3 to simple past / present perfect / present perfect continuous / past continuous in past tense recounts. The classroom instructions activity could be a good way to elicit instruction verbs / vocabulary for a classroom display.

Editor's notes

Although written for ESOL learners this resource and its delightful topic of a 100th birthday is also ideal for Entry Functional English (all three components,but particularly Speaking, Listening and Communicating) and has been mapped accordingly. The resource is a complete lesson plan and includes detailed and very helpful teaching notes, along with answer sheets. 

Resource File(s)
Physical format
10 page PDF