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EFL - ESL activities and games for teaching questions about the future

This A2 ESL lesson plan contains practical activity and game ideas for teaching elementary level students(A2) how to ask questions about the future. As always, our ideas and lesson plans require minimal resources(markers and a whiteboard). If you use an iOS or Android device, don't forget that you can get offline access to these materials, along with a much more extensive selection of ESL lesson plans, through the TEFL Handbook app.

Lead-in activity

The sample board below assumes that the students have prior knowledge of talking about the future using going to + infinitive. Start off by adding a couple of going to + infinitive statements to the board and having the class attempt to form questions from them. After that, elicit some example short-form responses. Finally, run through a few Wh- questions and explain how they change the meaning of these questions.

EFL - ESL Board work for questions about the future | Elementary

ESL activities for questions about the future

What are your plans? 

A pairwork speaking activity where students interview each other about their weekend plans. 

Students start by writing down six typical weekend activities. They will use these to interview each other about their plans for the weekend. Demo this with another student before they begin their interviews. You could also add the following language to the board to help them come up with ideas. 

Are you going to ___ [time expression]? 
What are you going to do [time expression]? 
What about [time expression]?

Wh- questions: Future 

Working with a different partner, students create more complex questions using the target grammar. 

Begin by eliciting some more future time expressions that you can use with these type questions, and make a list on the right-hand side of the board. If you can, use the L1 to help you elicit these time expressions: 

This Friday / Saturday / month / year 
On Saturday morning 
On Friday night 
In the summer 
In August 
Next week / Tuesday / month / year 

Next, have the students write down three to five Wh- questions using the new time expressions that they will use to interview a new partner. 

When they are ready, they can use these questions to interview their classmate. Tell them to record their partner's answers, as they'll need them for the next activity.

Report 

For this follow on speaking activity, students share what they learned about their partner during the previous exercise. 

Go round the class asking each student three or four questions about their partner's answers in the previous activity. Remind them that their responses should be in the third person singular and correct any mistakes you hear. 

Teacher: What was your second question? 
Student: Where are you going to go on holiday this summer? 
Teacher: And where is he going to go? 
Student: He's going to go skiing in France.

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Ideas for ESL games

Hot seat: Going to + Infinitive 

Students have to describe sentences that contain the target language to the player in the hot seat. 

Divide the class into two teams. On each turn, one student will sit with their back to the board facing their teammates. You'll write a statement on the board using the 'going to + infinitive' future construction. For example: 

Penguins are going to go to Paris. 
An elephant is going to learn Chinese. 

The other students then have to make that student say the sentence without using any significant words from it. You can set a time limit if you wish.

More A2 level ESL lesson plans

If you've found these ideas useful, be sure to check out our complete list of ESL lesson plans for elementary level students, A2 lower and A2 upper. For other levels, see the entire collection of ESL lesson plans. Also, iOS and Android users can access all of our materials through the TEFL Handbook app. An ESL lesson planner for English teachers.

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