Saturday, August 28

The Longest Yard: The Subjunctive

A. The subjunctive form of a verb is used following verbs or adjectives of urgency, obligation or advisability. Write the words below under the correct column.

Demand - Critical - Insist - Crucial - Propose - Desirable - Request - Essential - Recommend - Important - Suggest - Necessary - Imperative


Ex: Demand / Critical


Verbs and adjectives that don't express urgency, obligation or advisability don't need the subjunctive

B. Now watch the movie segment and choose the correct alternative for the items below. Make sure you decide whether you will use affirmative or negative form according to the information presented in the movie segment.

1. Paul Crewe thinks that the police are / aren't / be / not be party poopers.

2. It's essential that a drunk driver respects / doesn't respect / respect / not respect a police officer.

3. The officer demanded that Paul left / didn't leave / leave / not leave the vehicle.

4. It's critical that Paul drinks / doesn't drink / drink / not drink while or before driving.

5. According to the reporter, it's imperative that a football player is / isn't / be / not be accused of shaving points*.

* Shaving points in football is to articificially control the score of the game (using the players) so the game score comes in within a certain range. Usually done to manipulate the Las Vegas betting odds.

6. Paul's girlfriend insisted that he got / didn't get / get / not get one more scratch on her car.

7. He hoped everyone liked / didn't like / like / not like the accident he caused.

8. It is crucial that Paul gets / doesn't get / get / not get arrested because of the absurd mess he caused to the city.

C. Class discussion:

- What should happen to Paul Crewe? Should he go to jail, have an alternative sentence like helping the community or assist in institutions, or something else? For how long? Explain it.


Answer Key:

1. are

2. respect

3. leave

4. not drink

5. not be

6. not get

7. liked

8. get

Saturday, August 21

Year One: Future with Be Going To

This movie has funny moments, but I don't strongly recommend it. This scene is appropriate to contrast the uses of be going to in order to express the future.

Read the sentences that were taken from or made about the segment from the movie Year One. Decide the reason the structure to be going to is used and write it in the parentheses.

A. To refer to our plans and intentions: We're going to move to London next year. (= the plan is in our minds now.)

B. To make predictions based on present evidence: Look at those clouds - it's going to pour with rain! (= It's clear from what I can see now.)

1. I'm going to change my head. ( )

2. I'm going to eat the forbidden fruit. ( )

3. Eating a fruit is not going to change your entire life. ( )

4. He's going to ask some questions to test if his friend got more intelligent. ( )

5. The snake is going to constrict him. ( )

6. The snake is going to eat him. ( )

7. He's going to die a virgin. ( )

8. I'm going to go eat more fruit. ( )


Answer key:

Saturday, August 14

My Life in Ruins: Like to (Verb) x Like (Noun)

I like this comedy a lot. It shows Greece and tourists visiting the country with a fun, critic view about tour guides and tourists. I used this scene for the students to decide whether to use LIKE or LIKE TO, a simple grammar point beginners get confused with.

I. Watch the movie segment and circle the best alternative.

1. When people come to Greece, they like / like to see the ancient ruins.

2. Tourists also like / like to bask in history.

3. They like / like to be a part of the birthplace of civilization.

4. She likes / likes to the beauty and architecture of ancient Greece.

5. She doesn't like / doesn't like to modern Greece.

6. She also doesn't like / like to work as a tourist guide.

II. Write down 4 sentences saying what you like about the city where you live and and 4 sentences about what you like to do there.


I like the city park

I like to ride a bike near the lake.


Saturday, August 7

The Shawshank Redemption: Simple Past

This is a classic. Perfect for the simple past tense practice.

A. You will see the trial of Mr. Dufresne, accused of murdering his wife and her lover. Read parts of the judge's and Mr. Dufresne's speeches and fill in the blanks with the past tense form of the verbs in parentheses.

J: Judge

D: Mr. Dufresne

J: Describe the confrontation you _______ (have) with your wife.

D: It _______ (be) very bitter. She _______ (say) she ___________ (be) glad I _____ (know) that she ________ (hate) all the sneaking around.

J: And she ______ (say) she ________ (want) a divorce in Reno. What _______ (happen) after you ________ (argue) with your wife?

D: She ____ (pack) her bag.

J: ______ you _______ (follow) her?

D: I _______ (go) to a few bars first. Later, I ______ (drive) to his house to confront them. They ________ (be - neg) home. I __________ (park) in the turnout... and _______ (wait).

J: When they _________ (arrive), you ________ (go) up to the house and _____ (murder) them.

D: I ________ (get) back to the car and ________ (drive) home to sleep it off. Along the way, I __________ (throw) my gun into the Royal River.

J: The police _______ (drag) that river for 3 days and a gun was not found.

B. Watch the segment and check your answers.

C. Talk to a partner.

1. What's your opinion? Is Mr. Dufresne guilty or not guilty of the crime? Justify your answer.

2. What sentence do you think he got?

D. Now watch the second part of the segment with the sentence. Then answer the questions that follow.

1. What was the sentence?

2. Is it a fair sentence? Why (not)?

3. Do you agree with life sentences? Explain it