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Grade 3-5Grade 3-5

Tick-Tok Tenses – Activity to teach the past tense in a fun manner

Recommended Grades:
Difficulty Level:
Content Type:

Number of Participants: Any (it is a solo activity, any number of participants can be assigned)

Setting (Indoor / Outdoor): Any

Estimate Execution Time: 1-2 days

The objective of this activity is to teach the past tense in a fun manner.

An alarm clock, notebook, pen.

  1. Give the students a home-work for a holiday. Ask them to set alarms on their alarm clocks or their parents’ mobile phones for random hours of the day like 9:30 a.m ., 1:00 p.m, 10:00 p.m and so on…
  2. Ask them to note down what they were doing during these specific hours of the day.
  3. Also, ask them to note down their major activities during morning, afternoon, evening and night.
  4. Also, ask them to note down what their parents, family or other people in their surroundings were doing during some other specific hours like 10:00 a.m, 12 noon, 5:00 p.m.
  5. Next day, on the basis of their notes, ask them to write down 5-10 sentences about what they did and observed other people doing, during the specific hours and time periods given to them.
  6. Students learn the concept of past tense through their own daily experience. Encourage them to think about various scenarios. Since no textbooks were involved, they learn the concept in an interesting manner.

For eg:- Student A writes,
“1. I woke up at 9:30 a.m.
2. I was playing with my friends at 1:00 p.m.
3. I had completed my homework by 6:00 p.m.
4. I had been studying for 2 hours by 8:00 p.m. …”

Ask them the following questions about the sentences:
a. Was the action complete in the past? ( Simple Past)
b. Was the action going on at some time in the past? (Past Continuous)
c. Was the action completed at some time in the past? ( Past Perfect)
d. Had the action started in the past and continued up until another time in the past? (Past Perfect Continuous)

Now, according to the students’ answer, tell them which tense had been used by them. Likewise, in the given sentences, the classification is
“ 1. I woke up at 9:30 a.m. – Simple Past
2. I was playing with my friends at 1:00 p.m.- Past Continuous
3. I had completed my homework by 6:00 p.m.- Past Perfect
4. I had been studying for 2 hours by 8:00 p.m.- Past Perfect Continuous

Concepts:
Past tense– The form of verb that describes actions that had been previously done or state that previously existed.
Simple Past Tense– Past tense in which the action gets completed in the past is called simple past tense.
Past Continuous Tense– Past tense in which the action was going on at some time in the past.
Past Perfect Tense – Past tense in which the action was completed at some time in the past.
Past Perfect Continuous Tense– Past tense in which the action had started in the past and also gets completed in the past.

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