Present, Past and Future

Written on . Posted in First Day of Class Games.

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Language Practice: present, past, and future simple

Language Level: High-Intermediate, Advanced

Age group: 10 and older

Time: 30-40 minutes

This is a writing activity that you can do with your ESL (language learning) students on the first day of class (or later) in order to get to know them a little bit better.

Materials Needed:

  1. paper for drawing and writing
  2. art supplies
  3. pencils


  1. Give students three small pieces of paper (1/3 of a regular sheet of paper). Ask them to draw three pictures: one that would show them in their present (who they are, what they like doing, where they live, what is new in their family, etc.), one that would show a memorable moment from their past (visiting grandparents past summer, fishing with dad, little sister was born, etc.), and one that would show where and how they see themselves in the future (it can be a week, a year, or may be even 20 years from now).
  2. When students finish drawing their pictures, ask them to write descriptions for each one of them, providing as much details as possible. Depending on the level of language skills of your students, you can ask them write as little as a sentence or as much as a whole page for each description).
  3. Finally, students combine the three pieces on a bigger paper entitling it "My Present, Past and Future". Optionally, your students can use some art supplies to create a poster.

This is a great activity for the first days of school, especially if you don't know the level of language skills of your students. This activity will allow students even with limited language skills to express themselves through more drawing and less writing.

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True or False

Great for practicing present indefinite, past indefinite

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