Do you need all this stuff? (verb formation)

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  • B2
  • General
  • Global Issues

Verb formation - prefixes and suffixes

verb formation


In this lesson based on a video about minimalism students get an opportunity to practise verb formation (exploring prefixes and suffixes) and reflect on their lifestyles.   

B2 / Upper Intermediate60 minStandard LessonPremium Plan


Instead of a discussion, this lesson starts with students brainstorming suffixes used to form verbs (e.g. ate – activate) as well as common prefixes (e.g. down – downsize, up – upgrade). Afterwards, they put them into practice. The aim of the word formation task which follows is to change the words in brackets into verbs so that each of them fits in a gap in a corresponding sentence (e.g. minimal – minimise). The next exercise invites students to reflect on their workspaces. They compare photos of an organised desk and a cluttered one, and decide whether they identify with any of them. Next, they move on to a matching activity and join half phrases (e.g. take it-to the extreme, do what – feels right) and engage in a discussion about consumerist lifestyle which leads to a video about minimalism and its life-changing effect.


In the second part of the lesson, students watch the video and focus on answering three questions. Then, they look at seven gapped pieces of advice on how to lead a minimalist lifestyle and a box with some words and phrases studied in the earlier stages of the lesson (e.g. declutter, get out of debt). They complete the gaps and decide whether the tips are easy to follow, adding their own ideas. The lesson finishes with a guessing game. Students in turn pick a verb (with prefixes and suffixes they’ve learnt earlier) and have to describe its meaning to their partners. To make this final activity more challenging, each verb comes with three words which they aren’t allowed to say.



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Leave a Reply

  1. RiddickChase

    Wow, another great topic – relevant, intelligent and loaded with useful language. I’m looking forward to sharing this with a few different groups this week.


    1. Justa

      Thanks! We hope you and your students will enjoy it! Any feedback is welcome 🙂


  2. Ana Paula Moura

    Excellent vocabulary! My students will enjoy learning this! Thanks!


  3. Mariola Moçka

    Great lesson and vocabulary!


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