TeachingEnglish
Events that changed history

This activity is designed to be used as a consolidation exercise for the third conditional.

 It could be used as a writing activity to check the grammatical form of the 3rd conditional or as a speaking activity (see procedure 2) to guess the condition part of the sentence.

Preparation
Download the student worksheet and make one copy for each student.

Procedure

  • Brainstorm events that have changed the course of history dramatically. You could use pictures for this of famous people or inventions. This works better if the brainstorm is directed to personalise to include events relating directly to the students.
  • Write these on the board and then elicit the changes that would have occurred had these events not happened. This should elicit the 3rd conditional. However, don't worry about that at this stage as the worksheet directs learners to the form quite explicitly.
  • Give out the attached worksheet and ask learners to complete the sentences alone with their own ideas. Set a time limit and monitor the students work.
  • When learners have finished put them into groups depending on the class size. They can then compare ideas and discuss together.

You could also direct students to the correct form of the 3rd conditional and have learners peer correct any errors.

Alternative Procedure

  • Brainstorm events that have changed the course of history dramatically. You could use pictures for this stage of famous people or inventions. This works better if the brainstorm is directed to personalise to include events relating directly to the students.
  • Write these on the board and then elicit the changes that would have occurred had these events not happened. This should elicit the 3rd conditional. However, don't worry about that at this stage as the worksheet directs learners to the form quite explicitly.
  • Give out the attached worksheet and ask learners to complete the sentences alone. Set a time limit and monitor the students work.
  • Put students into pairs or groups of three depending on the class size.
  • Student A then reads out the result of one of her sentences. After reading the sentence student B tries to guess the correct condition. 
Example
Student A: I wouldn't have been able to speak to my friend last night...
Student B: If Bell hadn't invented the telephone.

 

    Written by Derek Spafford, Teacher & ICT Coordinator, British Council, Thailand

    Average: 3.7 (73 votes)