Christmas- Past Tense Mimes


Practising narrative tenses while learning about Xmas

By: Alex Case
Level: Beginner
Topic: General
Grammar Topic: Verbs and Tenses

Christmas and New Year past tenses mimes and speaking

Past Continuous, Past Simple and Present Perfect practice/ Cultural differences

Choose one of the actions below and mime it for your partner. Whenever they think they know which you’re miming, you should stop and they will say what you were doing.

Continue the same game, but not looking at the list below, then with your own ideas.

Choose one of the things below and give your partner clues about which one you are thinking about by telling them about you and that thing in the past, e.g. “I have done this once or twice” “I didn’t do this last Xmas” or “I last did this 3 weeks ago”.

Continue, but with other things you typically do at Xmas and New Year.

Grammar presentation

Why did you use the Past Continuous (was/were + v+ing, e.g. “You were kissing people”) for the mimes, but the Present Perfect (has/ have + past participle, e.g. “I have never kissed someone on Xmas Day”) and the Past Simple (e.g. “I last kissed someone 10 minutes ago”) for the other statements.

Which tense above is used with each of the following time clauses?

  • two years ago
  • twice (in my life)
  • at this time last year
  • when my mother came in and interrupted me
  • on Xmas Day
  • when the clock struck 12

(When I said ‘stop’)

You were visiting people

You were shopping

You were doing a spring clean

You were watching a movie

You were skating

You were skiing

You were sledging

You were cracking nuts

You were carving meat

You were eating sweets

You were decorating your house

You were opening a gift

You were ripping the wrapping paper off a gift

You were writing cards

You were praying

You were putting on a hat

You were singing Xmas songs

You were playing a musical instrument

It was snowing

You were opening a bottle of champagne

You were cutting a cake into slices

You were pouring gravy on your dinner

You were putting some meat into the oven

You were lighting a firework

You were working

You were travelling by train

You were dressing up in a Santa Claus costume

You were kissing someone on the cheek

You were putting gifts into a stocking (= a sock)

You were putting gifts into a shoe

You were eating a fish

You were lighting candles.

You were putting decorations on a cake.



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