Present Simple Affirmative Negative ESL Activities, Games and Worksheets

Collocation Dominoes

ESL Present Simple Game - Matching and Speaking Activity - Elementary - 20 minutes

In this fun present simple game, students make affirmative statements with have, take and go verb-noun collocations. The students are divided into groups of three and each group is given a set of dominoes. The students shuffle the dominoes and deal out six each, leaving the rest in a pile face down. The students then turn over the top domino from the pile and place it face up on the table. The first player makes a verb-noun collocation by placing one of their dominoes at either end of the domino on the table. If the player successfully makes a verb-noun collocation, they say a true present simple affirmative sentence with the collocation, e.g. 'I have a shower every morning'. The other group members judge the player's sentence. If the sentence is grammatically correct, the student leaves the domino where it is. If the sentence is wrong, the player picks up the domino and keeps it. The next player then tries to put down one of their dominoes at either end of the domino chain and so on. If a player cannot put down one of their dominoes, they take a domino from the top of the pile, put it down and make a sentence if they can. The first player to get rid of all their dominoes wins the game.
 

During the Week

ESL Present Simple Game - Matching and Speaking Activity - Elementary - 25 minutes

In this rewarding present simple game, students make affirmative and negative statements about their routine activities. Each group of three is given a chart showing days of the week and parts of the day. The students are also given a set of verb cards and noun cards. A verb card is put face down in each empty square of the chart. The noun cards are dealt out evenly. Students then take it in turns to turn over a verb card on the chart. If the verb matches with one of their noun cards, the student makes a true present simple affirmative or negative statement about what they do or don’t do at that time and day. For example, a student turns up the verb 'go' on the square representing 'Wednesday morning', matches it with the noun 'cycling' and says, "I don’t go cycling on Wednesday morning." If the group agrees that the sentence is grammatically correct and appropriate, the student puts their noun card on top of the verb card. The next student then turns over a verb card and so on. If a student cannot match one of their noun cards with the verb on the chart, the verb card is turned back over and play passes to the next student. The aim of the game is to be the first student to get rid of all their noun cards. The first student to do this wins the game.   
 

Fact or Fiction

ESL Present Simple Activity - Reading, Matching, Writing, Listening and Speaking - Elementary - 35 minutes

In this entertaining present simple activity, students match verbs and nouns together to make collocations and then make true and false present simple affirmative and negative statements using the collocations. The students then play a present simple true or false guessing game with the sentences. Each student is given a copy of the worksheet. The students begin by matching verbs with nouns/noun phrases on their worksheet. The students then write 12 present simple affirmative and negative statements about themselves using the verb-noun collocations from the first exercise. Half the sentences should be true and half should be false. When the students have finished writing, they are divided into pairs. Students then take it in turns to read one of their present simple statements and their partner decides if it's true or false. Students score one point for each correct guess. The student with the most points at the end of the game is the winner.
 

Habits and Lifestyles

ESL Present Simple Activity - Reading, Listening and Speaking - Elementary - 30 minutes

In this present simple activity, students find out about their classmates' habits and lifestyles by playing a guessing game using present simple affirmative and negative statements. Each student is given a folded copy of the worksheet with only a 'Name' column showing. The students write the names of 14 people in the class in the column. The students then unfold the worksheet and look at the present simple affirmative sentences. The students read each sentence and decide whether it's true or false by putting a tick or cross in the next column. Students then find out if their guesses are right or wrong. They do this by checking their guess with the person who is the subject of the sentence. If students think a sentence is right, they make a present simple affirmative statement, e.g. 'Emma, you watch TV in the evening'. If students think a sentence is wrong, they make a present simple negative statement, e.g. 'Emma, you don't watch TV in the evening'. That person then tells the student if they are right or wrong and gives more information, e.g. if a student made an affirmative statement, the person might say 'That's right. I watch TV every evening when I come home' or 'That's wrong. I chat to my friends online in the evening'. If students guess correctly, they put a tick in the last column. If they are wrong, they put a cross. The student with the most correct guesses is the winner.
 

Monday to Friday

ESL Present Simple Activity - Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking - Elementary - 25 minutes

In this engaging present simple activity, students talk about their Monday to Friday routine using affirmative and negative sentences. Each student is given a copy of the worksheet and paired with someone they don't know very well. The students then complete the sentences about their partner's Monday to Friday routine by guessing the information and writing it in the spaces provided on the worksheet. When the students have finished, they take it in turns to read out each sentence to their partner, e.g. 'I think that you wake up at 7 a.m. every day'. Their partner tells them if the statement is right or wrong. If the student's guess is wrong, their partner gives the correct information by first making a present simple negative sentence followed by an affirmative sentence, e.g. 'I don't wake up at 7 a.m. I wake up at 6 a.m., because I go jogging in the park'. The student with the most correct guesses at the end of the activity wins. When the students have finished, they discuss whether they have a lot in common with their partner or not. As an alternative, students complete the worksheet and then prepare a present simple yes/no question for each sentence, e.g. 'Do you wake up at 7 a.m. every day?' The students then ask and answer the questions in order to find out if their sentences are right or wrong.
 

My Animal

ESL Present Simple Activity - Drawing, Reading and Writing - Elementary - 25 minutes

This present simple worksheet is ideal for teaching young learners the present simple to express habitual actions. In the activity, students take on the role of an animal they would like to be and complete present simple affirmative and negative sentences as if they were that animal. Each student is given a copy of the worksheet. Students choose one animal that they would like to be. The students draw a picture of their animal in the box on their worksheet. The students then complete present simple affirmative and negative sentences about their animal's habitual actions. The students write as if they are the animal using the first person. Students also create one more present simple sentence of their own at the end. After that, the students work with a partner. The students take it in turns to read their sentences to each other. Finally, the students find the most dangerous partner they can and read their sentences to each other again.
 

Present Simple Dominoes

ESL Present Simple Game - Reading and Matching Activity - Elementary - 25 minutes

This entertaining present simple game is perfect for teaching or reviewing present simple affirmative and negative sentence structure. The students are divided into groups of three and each group is given a set of dominoes. The students shuffle the dominoes and deal out five each, leaving the rest in a pile face down. The students then turn over the top domino from the pile and place it face up on the table. The first player tries to make a present simple affirmative or negative sentence by placing a domino down either before or after the domino on the table. If the player can make a sentence, they read it to the group to show the match is correct. The next player then tries to put down one of their dominoes at either end of the domino chain and so on. If a player cannot put down one of their dominoes, they take a domino from the top of the pile and put it down if they can. If there are no dominoes left in the pile, play passes to the next student. The first player to get rid of all their dominoes wins the game.
 

Present Simple Places

ESL Present Simple Board Game - Reading and Speaking Activity - Elementary - 25 minutes

In this fun present simple board game, students practice making affirmative sentences with prepositions of place. Each group of three or four is given a copy of the game board, a set of cards, counters and a dice. The students shuffle the cards and deal out five each, placing the rest of the cards face down in a pile on the game board. Players take it in turns to roll the dice and move their counter along the board. When a player lands on a square, they read the subject pronoun and verb, and match it with a place on one of their cards. The player then makes a present simple affirmative sentence, adding in the correct preposition, e.g. 'They work in an office'. If the player's sentence is grammatically correct, they place the card at the bottom of the pile and take one from the top. It's then the next player’s turn. If the player's sentence is incorrect, they keep the card and go back to their previous square (or you can have them miss a turn). If a player hasn’t got a card that goes with the verb on the square, they pick up a card from the top of the pile and match it with the verb if possible. The first player to reach the finish wins the game.
 

Present Simple Practice

ESL Present Simple Lesson - Reading and Writing Activity - Pre-intermediate - 45 minutes

In this productive lesson, students learn to identify the rules and verb forms associated with the present simple tense. Students start by writing third-person singular verb forms, adding –s, -es, or –ies to the end of verbs. The students then complete the spelling rules for third-person singular verb forms by going through their list of verbs. Students then underline the correct verb form in a set of present simple sentences and write what they understand about subject-verb agreement in the present simple. After that, the students fill in the correct verb forms in affirmative and negative sentences and write the rules for negative verb forms in the present simple. Finally, students rewrite sentences, adding adverbs of frequency and frequency expressions in the correct position. After which, they complete sentences, explaining the correct position of frequency adverbs and expressions in a sentence.
 

The Name Game

ESL Present Simple Board Game - Speaking and Pronunciation Activity - Pre-intermediate - 30 minutes

In this present simple board game, students make present simple affirmative sentences and practice pronouncing third-person singular verb forms correctly. The students are divided into groups of four. Each group is given a copy of the game board, a dice and counters. Each player also writes their name on eight blank name cards. All the name cards are shuffled together and placed in a pile face down on the table. Players take it in turns to roll the dice and move their counter along the board. When a player lands on a square, they take a name card from the top of the pile. If the card shows their own name, they put it back and take another one until they turn up the name of one of the other players. The player then reads out the name on the card and tries to make a true present simple affirmative sentence about the person using the verb marked on the square, pronouncing the third-person singular verb form correctly. The person whose name is on the card tells the player if their sentence is right or wrong. If the sentence is true, the player stays on the square. If the sentence is untrue or the pronunciation/grammar is incorrect, the player goes back to their previous square. The first player to reach the finish wins the game.
 

Simon the Sportsman

ESL Present Simple Activity - Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking - Pre-intermediate - 25 minutes

In this useful present simple activity, students practice making questions and affirmative sentences in the third-person singular together with adverbs of frequency, adverbial time expressions and sports vocabulary. The students are divided into pairs (A and B) and each student is given a corresponding worksheet. The worksheets contain a chart showing Simon's free time routine. However, some of the information is missing. The students' task is to complete the missing information in their chart by asking and answering present simple questions with their partner.  When the students have finished, they complete a matching activity about Simon's routine where they match two halves of a sentence together to make true present simple sentences about Simon. Finally, students create five more true present simple affirmative sentences of their own about Simon's routine using the information in the chart. Students then read their sentences to the class.
 

What do you do at the weekend?

ESL Present Simple Activity - Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking - Pre-intermediate - 25 minutes

In this insightful present simple activity, students discuss what they usually do at the weekend. The class is divided into pairs and each student is given a copy of the worksheet. Students take it in turns to ask their partner about what they usually do at certain times during the weekend. Their partner replies by making present simple affirmative statements. The students then complete the worksheet with information about their partner's weekend by writing present simple sentences in the third-person singular. When the students have asked and answered all the questions, the pairs discuss how their weekends are different. When everyone has finished, the students describe their partner's weekend to the class.
 

Your Neighbourhood

ESL Present Simple Activity - Reading and Writing - Pre-intermediate - 50 minutes

This present simple activity helps to teach students how to talk about housing, transportation, facilities and services in their neighbourhood. The worksheet contains guided questions and answers for the students to follow. Each student is given a copy of the two worksheets. Students then work with a partner and take it in turns to ask and answer the questions on the worksheet, using the prompts to guide them. When the students have finished, they use the vocabulary, questions and answers to create a conversation about their neighbourhood in pairs. Finally, students present their conversations to the class.
 
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