Task-Based Lesson: How to Make Questions about Ability [Past and Present]

How to Make Questions about Ability - Exercises

Structures to Make Questions about Ability

Used to

  1. Did you use to play soccer when you were a kid?
  2. Did you use to study a lot when you were in the university?


  1. Could you drive a car when you were in the university?
  2. Could you run very fast when you were wrong?

Able to

  1.  Were you able to speak English?
  2.  Are you able to speak French?


  1. Can you swim very well?
  2. Can you play the paino

Verbs Useful to Make Questions about Ability


  1. Cook
  2. Play
  3. Drive
  4. Jump
  5. Run
  6. Read
  7. Write
  8. Swim
  9. Ride
  10. Eat
  11. Clean


  1. Do
  2. Make
  3. Call
  4. build
  5. dance
  6. fix
  7. listen
  8. read
  9. go
  10. Watch
  11. Drink


How to Make Questions about Ability – Lesson Plan

Schema Activation and Review (15 Mins)

Crossword: Students are given a crossword then

  1. they have to search for a key verb used to talk about abilities
  2. once they finish searching for all of them, they make a positive or negative statement with one of them.
  3. When they have their statement ready, they read it aloud
  4. Students have to listen to their classmates and remember the statement of their classmate to the front and to the left.

Pre-Task (75 Mins)

Task #1

  1. Teacher explains how to make questions about past and present abilities
  2. Students are given statements, they have to turn  5  of those statements into questions.
  3. once they finish, they have to go around the classroom asking those questions to their classmates

Task #2

  1. Students are given a sheet of paper with questions or a Quizlet set with Questions.
  2. They have to interview a classmate. They sit down with him or her and they make those questions.
  3. Now that they are ready, they are going to prepare to report  their 3 to 4 finding to  another couple withing the group.
  4. They go and talk to other group members

Task #3

  1.  Teacher prepares students for a listening task by pre-teaching some key vocabulary.
  2. Student listen to the dialogue  and fill in the blanks with the missing words
  3. they listen to the listening passage  2 or 3 times
  4. Once they have it ready, they practice the dialogue with their partners

Main-Task (30 Mins)

Create a video

  1. Students have in groups of three have to create a dialogue.
  2. They have to practice the dialogue, once they have fix issues with grammar and pronunciation
  3. They have to record themselves.
  4. They are going to share their dialogues with another group.
  5. Groups that have been given the dialogues, have to identify the question these couples made and their answers.

It is  important to tell students to record a dialogue with good fluency, pronunciation and grammar.

Post-Task (30 Mins)

  1. Teacher stresses the importance of accurate pronunciation and grammar by giving them feedback.
  2. They are given a short list of key vocabulary that we have studied over the past week they have to figure out the pronunciation by saying these words to another classmate.

Learn More

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