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EFL - ESL activities and games for teaching questions with do

A collection of resources for teaching present simple 'questions with do' to elementary level students (A2). It includes a suggested lead-in activity, along with practical ESL activities and games that are suited for low-resource ESL classrooms.

Lead-in activity

The sample board work assumes some prior knowledge of the present simple tense. You should try to elicit as much as possible, using the colour-coded text as a guide.  If you need to bring these materials into the classroom for reference, the TEFL Handbook app gives you offline access to all of the ESL resources on this site, plus a lot more.

EFL - ESL Lead-in activity for present simple questions | Beginner

ESL classroom activities: Questions with do

Basic question formation

A writing activity where students have to make present simple questions from a list of prompts on the board.

Write the following style of prompts on the board and have the students make questions. These can be a mix of questions with the verbs do and be.

1. John / live / Spain? - Does John live in Spain?
2. Clare / French? - Is Clare French?
3. Where / you / live?
4. What / her / name?
5. she / like / maths?
6. When / she / have piano practice?
7. you / get up at half-past eight?
8. Why / they / walk to school?
9. Where / we / going?

Before they begin, elicit the solutions to the first two and add them to the board.


A pairwork activity where students interview each other using the target language for the lesson.

The students will make five 'questions with do' that they'll use to interview a partner. Before they begin, add the following prompts to the board to help them, and elicit some example questions:

Get up? / Go to bed?
Musical Instrument?
Brothers or sisters?

When they have finished creating their questions, split the class into pairs and tell the students to interview each other using the present simple queries that they have created.

Teacher question time

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

If you did the previous activity, go round the class and ask each student some questions about their interviews:

Teacher: What was the first question you asked?
Student A: Where do you live?
Teacher: Where does he live?
Student A: He lives in Madrid.

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Related games

Here is one idea for a fun ESL classroom game for practising present simple questions. As usual, our games require the minimum of classroom resources and materials (whiteboard and markers).

20 Questions: Present simple 

Players use the target grammar of the lesson to nail down which famous person their classmate is thinking of. 

We can play a modified version of this game to revise the present simple. On each turn, one student will pretend to be a famous person and answer yes/no questions from the others, until they can guess who it is: 

Student A: Are you a man? 
Student B: Yes, I am? 
Student C: Are you an athlete? 
Student B: No, I'm not.

More A2 level ESL lesson plans

If you've found these ideas useful, have a look our complete list of ESL lesson plans for elementary level students, A2 lower and A2 upper. For other levels, see our entire collection of ESL lesson plans. Our suggested next lesson is on subject and object pronouns.

Are you an Android or iOS user? Then you should give our app a go! The TEFL Handbook app has over 100 lesson plans, 300+ ESL activities and over 100 ideas for classroom games. All of which can be accessed offline, perfect for quick reference in the classroom.

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