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Word formation: negative prefixes


negative prefixes


This lesson plan deals with synchronous and asynchronous communication. Apart from doing listening comprehension tasks, students will build adjectives with negative prefixes and learn some communication idioms.

B2 / Upper Intermediate60 minFlipped LessonUnlimited Plan

This is a Flipped Classroom lesson plan. In a nutshell, it means that the first part of the lesson needs to be done by students at home. Learn more about flipped classroom and how we implement it in these lesson plans in our post.


The pre‐class part is all about word formation with prefixes. Students get a list of adjectives and have to match them to the correct negative prefixes. Of course, they can use a dictionary if necessary. Next, they practise them by completing the gaps in the sentences in the next exercise. The idea here is that students should decide on their own which adjectives require a prefix and which don’t. The list of adjectives practised in this part of the lesson plan includes, e.g. irrelevant, dishonest, asynchronous, misleading, uneventful, etc.


Discussion & Vocabulary

The in‐class worksheet starts with a few statements about communication that students need to complete with the correct prefixes. Next, they discuss them and say whether they agree or disagree with them. Before watching a video, students learn a couple of phrases that will help them do listening comprehension tasks. First, they match halves to create the phrases and then, they rewrite a few sentences using one of the phrases.


Students watch the video about synchronous and asynchronous communication and in their own words say what these types of communication are. Next, they just listen to the first part of the video and complete a table with the missing information. Finally, they watch the second part and discuss a few questions about different types of communication and express their preference.

Communication idioms

The worksheets ends with three exercises on communication idioms. First, students match the idioms to their meanings. Then, they complete some sentences using the correct forms of the idioms to get more context when we can use them. The last activity is a discussion which can be done in pairs or as an open discussion. In this part of the worksheet, we want students to learn the following idioms: clear the air, keep someone posted, put someone on the spot, touch base, and beat (AmE)/flog (BrE) a dead horse.



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Leave a Reply

  1. Andy

    Great lesson!

  2. deborah

    Love it! Love your work! Keep it up, team!

    1. Justa

      Thank you! We’re happy to hear that 🙂

  3. Nastassia

    there’s a misprint in the second task point six: the e-lesson plan has the answer ‘uneventful’

    1. Justa

      Thanks for spotting it! Just fixed that!

  4. Karolina Warchol

    Exercise 2, g There’s a mistake – it should be “your”.

    1. Stan

      Oh, what a typo! We’ve just fixed that. Thank you very much for letting us know.

  5. Marcin Tauter

    Typo in section 2
    g) Can you elaborate on this point? You explanation is a bit unclear.

    1. Justa

      Already fixed! Clear your cache if you don’t see new versions.

  6. Ibrahim El-gamel

    Go ahead!

  7. [email protected]

    I love this lesson, but I would suggest a different title; how about “Negative prefixes; synchronous and asynchronous communication”

  8. timexer

    Error Alert! 😉

    Slide 34

    “put me on the spot” not “put me one the spot”


    1. Justa

      Thanks for spotting that! Already fixed 🙂

  9. Yeni Wardani

    Love all your work, keep up good works like this, amazing ”

  10. mtorrusio

    Misleading isn’t really the opposite of leading. To mislead is a separate verb than to lead. It might be better to use an adjective like misguided. I edited the worksheet to remove it, so I didn’t have to explain that it doesn’t fit with the rest of the list.

    As always, I find your lessons incredibly helpful!!!

    1. Stan

      Well, I understand your decision to change the word to something more straightforward but I’d say that both ‘lead’ and ‘mislead’ have the same root word ‘lead’. Originally, the word mislead meant ‘to lead or guide wrongly’. Click here to see its etymology. ‘Misleading’ is not the opposite of ‘leading’ in the sense of
      ‘chief, most important’ but in the sense of ‘guiding’.

  11. Alina Nemyrovska

    How is this a flipped classroom lesson plan? What part of this lesson is done at home/individually? This is what I get of the flipped lesson, e.g. there’s always some homework to be done before the actual in-class activity, isn’t there?

    1. Stan

      In the Teacher’s Version you have clear indication where the pre-class and in-class sections are. In the flipped classroom lessons, the students are supposed to acquire some knowledge outside the classroom (or review something) so that they can use it in practice during the lesson. This way you can use the classroom time most efficiently. Read more here:

  12. Cindy Naidoo

    Hi there!
    I used this lesson with my level B2 business students and they really enjoyed it, thank you for a great lesson.
    I have a question …

    An honest person/ a honest person, my understanding is that “a” is correct as “h” is not a vowel. In the lesson “an” is used, is that correct and if so, please offer an explanation. Much appreciated!

    1. Olia

      Hi! Thanks for the feedback 🙂 Regarding your question, when deciding which article to use (a or an), we look at the sounds, not the letters. And the word ‘honest’ starts with a vowel sound.

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