In the Bucket List ESL activity, students make a list of the things they want to do in their life, then compare with a partner.
Pre-teach the meaning of the idiom ‘kick the bucket’ and a ‘bucket list’. If possible, you could then show the trailer for the movie The Bucket List, which really helps to illustrate the concept.
Each student will need a piece of paper/notebook.
- Students write down ten (or five for a shorter activity) things that they want to do in their life, using the target language. If using the present perfect they could also include two or three special things they have already done.
- Students take turns reading their sentences to a partner (encourage peer error correction). They compare their ideas and discuss whether or not they would like to do their partner’s activities.
- Each pair can then feedback to the whole class on how similar their lists were.
The Bucket List ESL activity is a common way to practise the present perfect simple with intermediate level students. Activities they want to do are written using the structure I have never… . It is a good way to illustrate the ‘life experiences’ use of the tense.
With beginner students, you could use it to practise would like, in the form I would like to… . The Bucket List ESL activity could also be used in a class on travel, with students encouraged to think about where they want to go, and what they could do in different places around the world.
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