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Isolation of difficulty: should it be 'was' 'were' or 'did'?!

My kids are in the middle of their new project. Their topic is "important Poles from the past" so as you can imagine Past Simple is being used A LOT!

I've noticed that quite a lot of my students could not understand when to use 'did' and when to use 'was/were' in negative statements and questions. Well ... actually ... now that I think of it, I didn't have to notice it because they straight up told me: "we don't get it" 😅 I was very pleased with my students for 1) being aware of what exactly they're struggling with; 2) telling me about it.

I said that I'll try to explain it again to those students and asked if anyone else would like to join us for a mini lesson. A couple more people joined the group. As I was explaining and giving examples I continued asking now and again "do you understand now?". One by one they were leaving happy with themselves for finally getting it.

Just to make sure that they got it I made something for them. You know it, you love it ... it's task cards!! 😅 Remember the Present Simple and Present Continuous task cards (if not check them out here)? These ones work exactly the same. They isolate the difficulty completely by providing the student with all they need to create a correct sentence. The only choice the student needs to make is "should it be 'was' 'were' or 'did'".

The cards work for students whose L1 is Polish. Feel free to copy the design and make them for your students using their L1. The top of the cards says either "you want to say" or "you want to ask" and then gives the sentence in the L1.

I'll ask my students to work with the cards next week and see how well they get on. If anyone finds themselves still struggling, we'll continue working together 😊

Do your students struggle with this grammar point as well? You can download my task cards in the downloads section above. They're completely free, all you need is a member's account (also completely free) 🙂

PS: Christmas is coming!! Get your Christmas Vocabulary Enrichment Set here!!!!! Use the code "VES are here!" at the checkout and get additional 25% off the already discounted price🤑

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