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  #1 (permalink)  
Unread May 10th, 2006, 11:40 am
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Default Re: The SLAM Game (OR my favorite game ever!!!)

Could you suggest some active and funny games to teach the difference between past simple and present perfect tenses? Please!
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  #2 (permalink)  
Unread May 10th, 2006, 04:47 pm
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Default Re: The SLAM Game (OR my favorite game ever!!!)

Quote:
Quote nshubin
Could you suggest some active and funny games to teach the difference between past simple and present perfect tenses? Please!
I would just teach them separately. Their usage is quite different. If your students are having a hard time with them, it might be that they don't really understand the usage of each individually. So, I think you're better off mastering each one and then you probably won't need an exercise to teach the difference.
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Unread May 16th, 2006, 10:29 pm
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Default Re: Games to teach the difference between past simple and present perfect tense?

After they know the three and their differences, I can think of a game. You can have a poster on the board with past, present, and future, as well as some verbs with their correct tenses underneath the appropriate columns. You should cover up most of the verbs, so the students only see one of the verbs. You can turn this into any kind of game that you want, but the idea is the student has to guess the hidden verbs, and then bonus points for using them in a sentence. Hopefully this'll help you once you get past the "fun" of teaching them the 3 tenses.
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  #4 (permalink)  
Unread Jun 5th, 2006, 11:36 am
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Default Re: Games to teach the difference between past simple and present perfect tense?

Thanks, Andrew,
The point is that in Russian (our native language) both of the tenses are expressed the same way - PAST. We have only one past tense. To show them the difference between Past Simple and Present Perfect I need some pictures with the result of the action or connection with the present time, you see?
Games or worksheets are very desirable.
Anyway, thanks a lot. I will try.
Natasha
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Unread Jun 13th, 2006, 02:33 am
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Default Re: Games to teach the difference between past simple and present perfect tense?

It's the same in German. And these two tenses (even more than present simple and present continuous) are the bane of even the best students! Will have to think up some games, too. This time round I had two board games of questions: Did you? and Have you? and we alternated one question from each board.

I even did something unorthodox and told them to *always* start with the present perfect (has/have + past part) and then by a flow chart process of elimination either end up with the same sentence or, based on the evaluation of the time phrases, then remove the has/have and change the past part to the past tense. They seemed to appreciate that approach.
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  #6 (permalink)  
Unread Jun 13th, 2006, 04:14 am
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Default Re: Games to teach the difference between past simple and present perfect tense?

Is it that they are mixing the two tenses up or is it that they can't do one or the other.

In Japan there is no perfect tense as well and it's hard for them to understand but I get the best results by working with both separately. If I try to mix them too early to explain the difference in usage it's very confusing. However, if i deal with each one and their usage separately. Later when I go to explain the difference, the kids just look at me like I'm stating the obvious.
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  #7 (permalink)  
Unread Jun 13th, 2006, 06:56 am
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Default Re: Games to teach the difference between past simple and present perfect tense?

The German (business students) use a pseudo present perfect when they mean the past; i.e., I have parked my car on the road because I couldn't find a free space in the parking lot. That's because the German spoken past tense uses the "have."

A good game for the present perfect: the mes-english "get four"!
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Unread Jul 30th, 2007, 04:34 am
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Smile Re: The SLAM Game (OR my favorite game ever!!!)

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Quote nshubin
Could you suggest some active and funny games to teach the difference between past simple and present perfect tenses? Please!
What is the difference between past simple and past perfect tenses
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  #9 (permalink)  
Unread Jul 30th, 2007, 01:29 pm
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Default Re: Games to teach the difference between past simple and present perfect tense?

Haven't come across any problems with students understanding the difference between past simple and past perfect, just between the past simple and present perfect.

Past simple: Charles Dickens wrote some good books. (He is dead, so his bookwriting days are past.)
Present perfect: J.K. Rowling has written some good books. (She's still alive, so she can always write some more books, although her Harry Potter series is done.)

Past simple: She waited in line for 8 hours before she could buy the latest Harry Potter book.
Past perfect: After she had waited in line for 8 hours and had bought the book, she sat down and started reading it immediately.
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  #10 (permalink)  
Unread Sep 11th, 2007, 07:48 am
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Default Re: Games to teach the difference between past simple and present perfect tense?

You cannot teach them separetaly. I undersdant what you mean . We have the same problem in Polish.
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Unread Sep 11th, 2007, 07:55 am
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Default Re: Games to teach the difference between past simple and present perfect tense?

But Mesmark is right, you cannot mix them too early. Students must know both tenses perfectly to understand the difference.
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Unread Oct 3rd, 2007, 01:51 pm
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Default Re: Games to teach the difference between past simple and present perfect tense?

With a private student, I have verb cards and time cards. The time cards are cards like: yesterday, last week, two days ago, today, this week, this month, etc. I play some kind of game where the student must pick verb card and a time card and make a sentence. The candy and spiders game on mes-english is good for this, just keep the time cards separate and make them choose one of each.

I hope this makes sense. I am very tired.
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Unread Oct 3rd, 2007, 02:05 pm
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Default Re: Games to teach the difference between past simple and present perfect tense?

Very useable idea! Thanks!
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  #14 (permalink)  
Unread Oct 13th, 2007, 09:55 am
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Default Re: Games to teach the difference between past simple and present perfect tense?

thank you very much.
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Unread Oct 20th, 2007, 01:06 am
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Default Re: Games to teach the difference between past simple and present perfect tense?

Although it sounds a bit odd, I've had some success using magazine ads, photographs, and postcards. For example, students look at the image and write only in past tense. What did you do yesterday? Write to a close friend or relative. I usually suggest some irregular verbs to make the point clear. (In the US, you can find free postcards at many restaurants and you can often pick up inexpensive tourist postcards in popular destinations. I love giving students postcards to use for short writing assignments. Next, you pose various present perfect questions. How have your eating habits changed in the last year? What movies have you seen in the last month? What have we studied in this class so far? How have you changed in the last five years? What tourist sights have you seen in the last few weeks?
Postcards allow students to write short messages, focus on a single language skill, and display their English language skills to friends and family back home. You might find the technique adds some fun to what can be a rather boring grammar exercise.
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Unread Mar 8th, 2009, 09:12 pm
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Default Re: Games to teach the difference between past simple and present perfect tense?

I had a very successful game I played in my class last week.

On separate pieces of paper write little phrases like "eat raw fish", "travel to Europe", "run 5 miles", "teach a class", "listen to American radio", etc.
All the phrases should be using the verb in the present tense. Before you play a game, review the past participle of all the verbs you used. Say "eat" and have the class shout out what they think..."eaten", "travelled", "ran", "taught", "listened", etc. If they are a higher level, give them irregular verbs that are more difficult "ride"/ "ridden", "write"/"written", etc.
The class sits in a circle (in chairs) and one person is in the middle without a chair. They have to pick a card and chose a person to ask the question (present perfect) to. If the card reads "eat raw fish" they have to ask "Have you ever eaten raw fish?"
If the person they are asking says "Yes, I have", everyone has to stand up and switch places. The person who asked will take the opportunity to steal a seat.
If the person says "No, I haven't", only the people on their immediate right and left have to switch places without the questioner taking a seat.

The students LOVE this game. The goal is to not be a questioner. But it is fun to see them using the present perfect while having a good time!
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  #17 (permalink)  
Unread May 23rd, 2009, 02:14 pm
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Default Re: Games to teach the difference between past simple and present perfect tense?

An exercise that almost always clarifies the difference between past simple and present perfect is a simple sentence matching activity. Choose 2 famous actors, authors, and artists that are well known by your students. One person in each category must be alive, and one deceased. For example: actresses - Marilyn Monroe and Julia Roberts. Write a sentence that can be applied to both of them, but obviously with different tenses. I use:

"She was one of the world's most famous actresses for many years."
"She has been one of the world's most famous actresses for many years."

The students usually have no problem matching up the sentences to the correct category, but when they have to pick the difference between Marilyn's sentence and Julia's sentence, they struggle. This is a great opportunity to point out the completed action (Marilyn is dead and can no longer act) and the continued action (Julia is alive and still a famous actress - she was 10 years ago and continues to be today). This is simple to set up and very clear to the students. They always get it.

Last edited by mteach : May 25th, 2009 at 05:27 am.
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  #18 (permalink)  
Unread Aug 9th, 2010, 10:24 pm
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Wink Re: The SLAM Game (OR my favorite game ever!!!)

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Quote nshubin View Post
Could you suggest some active and funny games to teach the difference between past simple and present perfect tenses? Please!
Well, I donīt have any special game or activity but some time ago I realized something that is not written on any book I īve seen my all life. Present perfect is used when you donīt want to say when it has happened, that everybody knows, but there is something much better behind it! When you start giving DETAILS of something you use the past simple. So that you would use more present perfect in general things or when you start talking about a new topic. However, as soon as you want to detail you use the past simple.
If you consider that, starting a game or activity with ever and experiences is wonderful; as you get a positive answer about anything in class you might encourage the other students asking questions with WH about the topic.
I hope this "light" help you guys, see you
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  #19 (permalink)  
Unread Aug 31st, 2010, 02:57 pm
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Default Re: Games to teach the difference between past simple and present perfect tense?

what is mes-english?
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  #20 (permalink)  
Unread Aug 31st, 2010, 04:56 pm
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Default Re: Games to teach the difference between past simple and present perfect tense?

MES-English.com is a website with ESL materials, printable activities, games, and such.
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