CELTA – Precourse – Section 3B, Tasks 33, 34 and 35


Task 33: Make a list of reasons why you think non-native speakers might find listening more challenging than reading. 

Listening usually goes at a much more rapid speed than reading, especially for non-native speakers. With reading, people can go according to their level of understanding, as well as re-read and take time to comprehend a sentence.

Task 34: Think of three different situations in which you listened today. Make a note of who you were listening to, your motivation for listening and describe how you listened. 

  1. Nuremberg Nazi Museum Audio guides: Listening for information – intensive.
  2. CELTA interview: Listening for information – intensive.
  3. German radio: Listening for pleasure – skim/gist listening.

Task 35: Match the above sub-skills to the following listening texts.

  1. A lecture for a course you are taking at university. – Intensive listening
  2. A sales pitch for a computer that doesn’t really interest you. However you are at work and you can’t just walk out. – Skim/gist listening.
  3. Announcements at a train station when you are waiting to hear the time of the next train to your destination. – Scan listening.
  4. Instructions from your boss for a new task that is critical for your job. – Intensive listening.
  5. An interview with someone who is famous and whose political opinion you would like to find out about. – Listening to infer meaning.
  6. A radio programme on a topic that is mildly interesting for you. – Skim/gist listening.

CELTA – Precourse – Section 3A, Tasks 30, 31 and 32


Task 30: Think of all the texts you’ve read today and comment on the way in which you have read these texts. 

Text message: scan fast for meaning. Correction for punctuation and grammatical errors.

Tram journey on Google Maps: scan reading multiple times.

News article: skim/gist reading for information.

CELTA precourse: Intensive/detailed reading.

Task 31: Below are some different text types. Think about which of the above reading sub-skills we would use to read these texts:

An academic article we need to read for an essay we are writing – Intensive/detailed reading

A telephone directory – scan reading

The editorial of a newspaper on a topic we care about a lot – reading to infer

An advertisement for a job that might be suitable – skim/gist reading, then detailed if it turns out to be promising

Task 32: When people read in a language that is not their first language, they often forget to use appropriate language skills and will read all texts in a great deal of detail. They are also likely to over-use bi-lingual dictionaries, pausing in their reading every time they find a word they do not understand. What problems are there with this way of reading?

Not all texts need this level of detail, and could actually be understood by just scanning for the required information and using the context to make sense of the information.


CELTA – Precourse – Section 2B, Tasks 21, 22 and 23


Task 21: Make a list of what extra information dictionaries can provide about words apart from the meaning. It would be a good idea to refer to a dictionary to help you. 

Dictionaries can include meaning, usage, etymologies, phonetics, pronunciation and translation. – Wikipedia

Task 21: In the following sentences, there is a vocabulary error of some kind. Identify and describe the problem.

  1. He’s the highest person in the family by more than 2 centimeters. – Tall refers to the height of something, and high refers to the elevation from the ground. Tallest is the correct word here, especially as we are talking about people (buildings can use high). 
  2. I think I’ll go to bed now. I’m feeling a little enervated. – enervated is a synonym to weakened, so I guess you could say ‘I feel enervated’.
  3. It is an extremely good essay. The ideas in it are original and pretentious. – In most cases, people see pretentious as a negative characteristic, and it doesn’t fit with the former praise. 
  4. Her grandfather gave her a loving slap on her face. – in most cases, you don’t slap someone lovingly on the face (he may give a loving slap on her arm, or a loving caress on her face). 
  5. Every day I like to go footing after work. It’s good exercise and it helps me to relax. – footing by itself is not a word we use when we talk about walking (hot-footing however is), so it’s better to use walking or running.

Continue reading

CELTA – Precourse – Section 2A, Tasks 19 and 20


Task 19: Look at the following mini-dialogues below and decide the time reference or use of the underlined examples of the present progressive.

A: How about going to a movie this evening?

B: I can’t. I’m meeting Judy for a drink. – future


A: Where’s Tony?

B: I don’t know where he’s got to.

A: He’s always running late. – complaining


A: It was late at night and dark and I was on myway back to the hotel. Suddenly, I find I’m walking down the street all on my own and I can hear the sound of footsteps… – Past

Continue reading

CELTA – Precourse – Section 2, Tasks 17 & 18


Task 17:

The following examples of language contain different tenses which are underlined. The name of the tens is also given. decide what the time reference of each example is and remember that the time reference may not match the tense name. 

  1. The sun was shining brightly in the sky (past progressive) – Now
  2. They’ll have finished work on the bridge by then. (future perfect simple) – Future
  3. She’s been working in the garden all morning. (present perfect progressive) – Now
  4. Have you got a minute? I was wondering whether we could have a word. (past progressive). – Now
  5. They own most of the land around here. (present simple). – Now

Task 18: 

  1. What auxiliary verb is used to create the present progressive? – ‘be’, am, is, are, etc. e.g: I am studying, she is running. 
  2. What is the form of the lexical verb of the present progressive? – it ends with -ing, e.g. he is eating. 

CELTA – Precourse – Section 2, Tasks 14, 15 & 16


Task 14:

Think of the past form and the past participle forms of the following verbs. Which are regular and which are not regular?

  • Hear – heard – heard – irregular
  • Do – did – done – irregular
  • Help – helped – helped – regular
  • Think – thought – thought – irregular
  • Take – took – taken – irregular
  • Steal – stole – stolen – irregular
  • Go – went – gone – irregular
  • Drink – drank – drunk – irregular
  • Arrive – arrived – arrived – regular

Continue reading

CELTA – Precourse – Section 2, Tasks 12 and 13


Task 12:

All of the following sentence (1-5) contain modal auxiliary verbs that are underlined. Tatch the modal verb to the definitions below (A-E). 

  1. You should see a doctor as soon as you can. – C
  2. You may go now, thank you. – E
  3. This letter must be from Frank – he’s the only one who hasn’t written so far. – B
  4. can’t play the piano very well. – A
  5. We couldo out, but I don’t know if I’m in the mood. – D
  • A. Ability.
  • B. Logical deduction
  • C. Advice
  • D. Possibility
  • E. Permission


Task 13:

Match the underlined verb form examples to the correct definition. 

  1. I worked until 7 o’clock last night. – past tense
  2. They’ve been seeing a lot of each other lately.
  3. She lives not far from here. – 3rd person/PST
  4. You have to try harder. – base form
  5. It was handed to me as I was leaving. – past participle
  • Base form
  • 3rd person – present simple tense
  • past tense form
  • past participle form
  • -ing form

CELTA – Precourse – Section 2, Tasks 10 and 11


Task 10:
Decide if the underlined verbs in the following sentences and questions are lexical verbs or auxillary verbs. 
  1. He watches TV for at least two hours every evening.
  2. What are you looking for?
  3. They aren’t going to come.
  4. What does he want?
  5. They haven’t been here before.
  6. He was waiting on the corner.


  1. Lexical
  2. Lexical
  3. Auxiliary
  4. Auxiliary
  5. Auxiliary
  6. Lexical


Task 11:
Decide if the underlined verbs be, do and have have an auxillary or lexical function in the following sentences and questions. 
  1. I had a bad headache yesterday.
  2. When do you get up each day?
  3. How long have you been learning English?
  4. I did it without thinking.
  5. We do some exercise every morning.
  6. Have you had them long?
  7. I was hoping for a quick answer.
  8. Are they still here?


  1. Lexical
  2. Auxiliary
  3. Auxiliary
  4. Lexical
  5. Auxiliary
  6. Lexical
  7. Auxiliary
  8. Auxiliary