The stories of famous entrepreneurs

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Grammar - Past Simple revision


Past Simple revision




This flipped lesson plans is perfect for Past Simple revision. Students practise using Past Simple by doing a few grammar and speaking exercises as well as learn verbs and phrases related to setting up and running a business. Moreover, they will do a jigsaw tasks and discover the stories of some famous entrepreneurs such as Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, Zhou Qunfei or Amancio Ortega.

B1 / Intermediate60 minFlipped LessonFree / Unlimited 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.


In this part, students do exercises which help them revise the rules and use of the Past Simple tense. First, they study a table presenting how we create questions, affirmative and negative sentences in the Past Simple tense and need to fill in some sentences with the correct forms of the verbs given. All the sentences are about famous people and their lives. Next, they learn some vocabulary connected with running a business, e.g. go bankrupt, found, expand. To practise both, the use of Past Simple and the vocabulary, students read a short text about Bill Gates and have to fill in the gaps with the correct forms of the verbs in brackets.


Speaking and listening

The in‐class part starts with a discussion. Students are asked to recognize some famous entrepreneurs and talk about successful people. Next, there is a short task on regular and irregular verbs in which students just need to write down the past forms of the verbs given. After that, they move to the video‐related tasks. First, they brainstorm what they know about Steve Jobs, watch a short video and learn about his early life. Then, they watch the second video, which concerns his early career, and have to mark the given sentences true or false.


Finally, students move to a speaking part. A good idea for the Past Simple revision is a jigsaw exercise. Give your students an infographic about a famous entrepreneur. Each person gets an infographic, but with some facts missing. Students read the information they get and ask their partner about the missing parts. The lesson plan includes three sets of infographics (about the lives of Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon, Zhou Qunfei, the richest self-made woman and Amancio Ortega, founder of Zara and the Inditex group).



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Leave a Reply

  1. Sabrina

    Excellent lesson plan. Can you prepare something to revise future tenses? Thanks in advance

    1. Stan

      Hmm, that’s an excellent idea 🙂

  2. Regina

    Hello there! I’m not familiar with infographic. How can I print them?

    1. Stan

      Infographics are visual representations of data and information. Normally, you’d use them in their digital, online format. But if you want to print them out, go to where they are published (the Teacher’s worksheet includes links), right click anywhere and select Print. Remember to scale it so that each fits on an A4 page.

  3. chunhong

    just do what you love

  4. Regina


  5. Dayana

    It is my first time teaching English and working with teenagers I was feeling really lost because of that. But, because of this lesson plan, I got the premium version and I’m incredibly in love with this lesson plan. I wish my ESL teachers would have taught me English this way. Thank you! I’m sure my students will love this as I do!

    1. Stan

      Best feedback ever! Thank you 🙂 You definitely need to share with us how it went with your students.

  6. Shan

    I don’t understand how to print the infographics without joining adiama.

    1. Stan

      No worries! I’ve just made video for you showing how it is done:

  7. Lucia

    love this plan. I believe it would be great to have more info gap activities included. I believe they’re amazing for all levels but mostly for the lower ones as students also practice question formation. Thanks!

    1. Stan

      Good point! I personally love such tasks and see the need for students to practise question making. In my experience, they sometimes have problems with that.

  8. Courtney's English

    Thank you! This is a great lesson plan!

  9. DavidDMY

    The lesson plan is really good. Students particularly like learning definitions through true/false statements. However, I’d like to point to a mistake in your lesson plan with the word bankrupt. You or your company may go bankrupt, but if used as a verb, it means to cause someone to become bankrupt. For example CEO’s new strategy may bring short-term profits but is certainly going to bankrupt the company in the long term. Other than that, an excellent lesson plan for lower B1 students (btw I’m hoping for more lesson plans for such students!) 🙂

    1. Stan

      Thanks David for spotting that. It was an unintended mistake on my side. I’ve already fixed that and uploaded revised versions. Glad to hear you liked this lesson – I will try to create more B1 lessons like this one in the future.

  10. Caroline Koshimura

    Thank you! It’s a great lesson for business students!


    Excellent lesson plan ,Thanks !

  12. Lula Cerbino

    this is amazing! My sudents loved the information gap activity 🙂

  13. Kseniya Molodaya

    That’s perfect! Thank you!

  14. Anna Franco


  15. Nieves

    Great lesson plan! But I’ve missed more female representation. Oprah is just mentioned in activity 2, and I think she would be a great example for activity 4 or 5.

    1. Stan

      Yes, you’re right! We could have replaced Elon Musk or Richard Branson with a businesswoman in ex.5. We might revisit that thought and update this lesson. The choice of Bill Gates for ex.4 was first to put a person known around the world, second to juxtapose that with another tech-billionare – Steve Jobs.

      1. Nieves

        Thank for your answer and taking comments into consideration! Keep up your wonderful job!

  16. Cris Wolves

    Great lesson! Can you fix the answers in slide 12?

    1. Stan

      Cris, are you opening the e-lesson plan in Google Slides? The answers there are positioned correctly (checked on Chrome and Safari). If you download it as pptx, we can’t guarantee the quality – the many factors depend on your computer configuration and software version you use.


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