Cambridge B2 First Grammar Practice

The countdown to the summer official Cambridge examinations has already begun. B2 First exam candidates must have covered by now all the grammar structures necessary to know at this level. Now, these structures are put into practice, and most of the learning menu, these days, is full of exam tasks.

To me, this period looks like an enormous delicious hamburger: its bread layers are the two trial exams, the preliminary phase in January and the final one in April, and all the ingredients in-between are the official exam-based tasks taken from the previous official exams. For everyone, both teachers and students, these last months before the official exam are crucial since teachers identify each learner’s weaknesses thus providing a more individual support, and students, likewise, see how well they control a given grammar topic.

In my earlier written article, B2 First Grammar Checklist in Exam Context, I have listed all the B2 First grammar themes. Today, I’ve decided to come up with a treat for teachers. It is a game, divided into three parts, which covers all this grammar checklist. Its main goal is to identify and correct grammar mistakes, as well as provide an explanation to them. I hope students find this grammar practice fun activity entertaining and useful.

B2 Ultimate Grammar Game

Part 1

Aim

To recognize a well grammatically-built sentence, to identify grammar mistakes and collect as much money as possible on the way.

Contents

A. Adjectives with “ED” and “ING”

B. Comparisons

C. Conditionals: zero, first and second 

D. Nouns: countable and uncountable

E. Past tenses: simple, continuous/progressive, USED TO and WOULD

F. Past tenses: perfect and perfect continuous

G. Prepositions of time

H. Present tenses:  simple, continuous/progressive, perfect, and perfect continuous

I. SO and SUCH

J. TOO and ENOUGH

Players: Teams of 2-4 students

Material

  • A playfield for each team 
  • A copy of A-J grammar tables (shared by the teams) 
  • A copy of the ANSWERS for the teacher 

All the material is downloadable. Check below.

Tip: laminate all the grammar table sheets for future use.

Instructions

Before the game starts, the teacher presents the grammar points (on the screen or whiteboard) and each team elects an accountant who will keep the books.

Next, each team chooses a grammar category (A-J) and picks up a number from 1 to 8. Then the accountant crosses the given square on the field of play to avoid repetition.

The teacher hands to each team the chosen grammar sheet (A-J). To keep track of which questions have been chosen, the teacher also crosses the squares chosen by the teams, from the ANSWERS sheet, each time they pick up a grammar point and a question number.

Each team has a limited amount of time, e.g. 20 seconds, to decide whether the sentence chosen is correct or incorrect. If incorrect, they write the correct form and give an explanation to it.

When the time runs out, the teams, in turn, say the answer. Only then, the teacher awards the team with the given amount of money on condition they can explain why a given structure is wrong. And, given the square, the team either loses all the money they have saved up until that moment if it’s BANKRUPT, or equally shares all the money among the teams if it’s CHARITY.

Model

  • Team A: We choose B4 (comparisons, question 4). We think the sentence is grammatically correct. 
  • Teacher: You could have won 20 points. Unfortunately, the sentence is grammatically incorrect. Does anyone know why?

The teacher then decides to either elicit the answer from the students or give them the explanation. Question B4 can not be chosen any longer.

  • Team B: We choose C8 (Conditionals, question 8). We think the sentence is correct. 
  • Teacher: You are on the money. You’ve won 10 points.

Question C8 won’t be chosen by any of the teams until the end of the game. The accountant notes down the points won. 

The game can last as long as time available, and can continue the following lessons. 

I wouldn’t play more than 15 minutes each time. This game is hard play once hard work has been done. There are other important activities to organize during each lesson our students need help with.

Below you can find all the material you need. Just download and start the game. Parts 2 and 3 will follow soon.

Playfield for players

Grammar table of contents

Common playfield with answers

Being able to identify and correct grammar mistakes is paramount in the context of a Cambridge exam. Not only will candidates proofread their writings effectively in terms of the grammar resource, they will also speak correctly. Not to mention part 4 in the Reading and Use of English paper, task in which the candidates deal with the key-word sentence transformation questions. No other exam task assesses the grammar control more than part 4. So, let’s help our learners be ready for it!

Stay tuned for more words of advice and handy material!

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