Creative Communication with Causative Verbs

How to Get Along with Your Roommate

Step 1 – Create sentence completions based on advice for getting along with one’s roommate. Each sentence must use a causative verb. If you’d like, use my suggestions below. (Or use my printable template. Activities for Causative Verbs_Handout)

  1. Always help your roommate __________.
  2. Let your roommate _________ sometimes.
  3. Never make your roommate _________.
  4. If you have a messy roommate, you might try to get him or her _________.
  5. Sharing is a nice idea in general, but you don’t have to let your roommate _________.

Step 2 – Have students work in pairs and generate ideas to complete the sentences.

Step 3 – Combine pairs to form small groups of four and ask students to discuss their advice. You can give additional prompts for conversation: Have you ever had a roommate? Did you follow any of this advice?

Neighborhood Gossip

Step 1 – Prepare a list of prompts on the board that include the name of a neighbor and the object that person has/ had influence on. For example: Mr. Jones – his dog, Mrs. Greenwood – her son, the Smiths – their grandchildren, etc. (Additional suggestions are available here. Activities for Causative Verbs_Handout 2)

Step 2 – Tell students to imagine living in the same neighborhood with all the people listed on the board. Each student must repeat all the gossip s/he has heard and share a new piece of gossip. Each piece of gossip must use a causative verb. In short, this is a memory game. Have students sit in a circle.

  • Student A asks Student B (on the left): Have you heard about Mr. Jones?
  • Student B may reply in the negative: No, what? / No, tell me.
  • Student A then shares the gossip. Example: Mr. Jones let his dog eat all the flowers in Mrs. Greenwood’s garden.
  • After Student B reacts appropriately (Oh my! Really? Etc.), Student B then repeats the gossip to Student C (on the left) and adds a new piece of gossip: Mr. Jones let his dog eat all the flowers in Mrs. Greenwood’s garden…and you know what else? Mrs. Greenwood got her son to build a fence around her garden so the dog can’t get in anymore.
  • Student C must address Student D (on the left) and pass on all the gossip and, of course, add a new piece of gossip. The game continues until all students have had a turn to spread some gossip. Allow previous speakers to help the current one to recall information if necessary.

3 Comments Add yours

  1. sarah forrester says:

    I love your blog. However, do you have any archives or new lessons for more basic students? My ESL students are very low level. Thank you. Sarah

    1. englishwithjennifer says:

      Hi Sarah,

      I think a good number of the activities I post can be modified for lower level students. You can do a key word search using “lower level students”, “beginners”, and “basic students”. I often use those phrases in my posts.

      Here are just some possibilities:
      1. Warm-up activity: simple past tense Q & A “Breakfast Club”
      2. Counting Game
      3. Warm-up activity: sequence markers, food vocabulary. “Food Fest”
      4. Numbers, listening practice: Using Authentic Weather Reports
      5. Listening/ speaking practice, explaining a process, garden vocabulary: Everyday Vocabulary video “Gardening”
      6. Exercise with modal verbs to express ability

      Please let me know if you’re looking for activities on specific topics or to target certain skills. I love creating posts as responses to requests.

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