Number one for English language teachers

IELTS set one - writing part 2 - language of comparison

Type: Teaching notes

Aims to practise grammar and vocabulary associated with drawing comparisons.

You can do this on any topic but here I’ve given an example of comparing living in the city compared to living in the country. Not only does this activity help the students with grammar and vocabulary but it also gives them ideas of things to talk about in the speaking test and possibly what to write about in the writing test part 2.

Draw a table on the board as follows and elicit examples of the advantages of living in the country and the city. I use a smiley face to illustrate advantages. The students can continue the activity alone or in pairs.

Living in the city Living in the country

• Job opportunities
• Amenities
• Education
• Health
• Public Transport

etc, etc

• Peace and quiet
• Natural environment
• Communities
• Cost

etc, etc

Complete the table with the students’ answers. In the table only write the nouns. Now you have the nouns in the table the students can practise comparing the two using comparative structures. e.g. there are more job opportunities in the city while finding the job you want may be more difficult in the country.

You could decide beforehand what structures you want the students to practise. e.g. comparative / than, on the one hand.......on the other hand, etc. etc. This exercise kills many birds with one stone e.g. forming comparatives, generating ideas, practising planning an essay etc. You could do the same activity focusing on disadvantages.

Finally it would be a good idea to get the students to write down some of their sentences or write an essay on the topic.

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Readers' comments (1)

  • Good idea, easily adapted to using in other lessons. Thanks

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