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Exploring Phrasal Verbs

Level: Intermediate/Upper-Intermediate

Objective: By the end of this lesson, students will be able to understand and use phrasal verbs in context.


  • Whiteboard or blackboard

  • Markers or chalk

  • Handouts with phrasal verb examples

  • Sentence strips or flashcards with phrasal verbs

  • Worksheets or exercises for practice

Warm-up (10 minutes):

  1. Begin the lesson by writing a few sentences on the board that include phrasal verbs, such as "She turned down the invitation," "He ran out of time," or "They put off the meeting." Ask students to identify the phrasal verbs in the sentences and discuss their meanings briefly.

Introduction (10 minutes):

2. Explain to the students that phrasal verbs are combinations of verbs and particles (prepositions or adverbs) that create new meanings. Give examples of common particles used in phrasal verbs, such as "up," "down," "on," "off," "in," "out," etc.

  1. Provide a handout with a list of common phrasal verbs and their meanings. Discuss a few examples together as a class to ensure understanding.

Meaning and Usage (15 minutes):

4. Divide the students into pairs or small groups. Give each group a set of sentence strips or flashcards with different phrasal verbs.

5. Instruct the students to match the phrasal verbs with their corresponding meanings. Encourage them to discuss their answers and provide explanations for their choices.

6. Invite each group to share their answers with the whole class, and facilitate a brief discussion to ensure understanding.

Form and Structure (15 minutes):

7. Explain that phrasal verbs can be separable or inseparable. Write two examples on the board, one of each type, such as "I picked up the book" (separable) and "She put on her coat" (inseparable).

9. Discuss the rules for separating or keeping the particle attached to the verb, and provide additional examples for each type.

10. Clarify any questions the students might have regarding the form and structure of phrasal verbs.

Practice Activities (20 minutes):

10. Distribute worksheets or exercises that provide opportunities for students to practice using phrasal verbs in context.

11. Encourage students to work individually or in pairs to complete the exercises. Walk around the classroom, providing assistance and feedback as needed.

12. Review the answers as a class, and discuss any questions or difficulties that arose during the activity.

Wrap-up (10 minutes):

13. Engage the students in a final discussion about the importance of phrasal verbs in everyday English. Encourage them to share any personal experiences or examples they have encountered.

14. Summarize the main points covered during the lesson, highlighting the meaning, usage, form, and structure of phrasal verbs.

15. Assign a homework task that requires students to create their own sentences using phrasal verbs.

Note: Adjust the timing of each section as needed, depending on the students' progress and engagement.