a more personalised approach to ING and TO

The gerund vs infinitive grammar has always seemed quite tricky for teaching to me: I have always felt there wasn’t enough really good materials, especially for the one-to-one situation.  Of couing to questionsrse there are all kinds of gap-fills and contextualised gap-fills (like short gapped texts and stories, where students have to choose right forms of verbs, then they can retell the story or discuss it). And that’s mosly it. Or I was looking in some wrong place.  To me these activities seem to have a serious drawback: not much room for personalisation.

Moreover, gerund and infinitive never seems to easy a thing to my students, so as I want to provide more practice for them, I have to expose them to more and more stories and gap-fills. Which is useful, but not terribly creative – the fact that usually brings some kind of excusing intonation into my voice. Something like “I know it’s not particularly creative or interesting to you, but you have to do it because you keep saying “I suggest to talk about it later” “. And that is actually another important point: even after having done tons of exercises they keep making the same mistakes when they speak – because they tend to forget the infinitive/ gerund grammar once they are out of the exercise frame.

So here is my little attempt to make the gerund/ infinitive grammar a bit more personalised and functional, fresh, from today’s morning class:

Is there anything you’d suggest /do to improve life in your city?
Is there anything you couldn’t afford/do 10 years ago but can afford /do now?
What do you think there is no point /do after the sanctions were introduced?
What do you wish you stopped/do but can not?
What do you want your colleagues /do this week?
Do you mind/talk about personal issues with business partners?
What do u regret /not do last weekend?

These simple questions served well as a follow-up on gerunds/infinitives, were a good lesson starter and invited some speaking at the very beginning of the class.

What do you think? And what do you do about gerunds/ infinitives apart from the standard things?

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About Svetlana Urisman (Englishteachingnotes)

I am an ADOS and an English teacher (and materials writer) in a language school in Moscow. I have been an ADOS and a teacher trainer for almost a year now and a teacher for about 5 years. I am keen to share some ideas and materials I've developed in order to take them further and not to forget or lose them You are welcome to use any materials represented in this blog, and I will be happy to get your feedback afterwards if you take them to your classroom! ;-)
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