Tag Archives: have sth done

Explaining Have Something Done and Killing Two Birds with One Stone

Time is of the essence. I am pressed for time. There is no time to lose. Time is running out or time is ticking are some of the phrases that fit me like a glove now that I have less than a month to wrap up the course. In case you are wondering, nope, I didn’t miss a single lesson this year, so I am not making up for lost time, it is just that I feel there is so much I haven’t taught them; there is so much that still needs to be reinforced.

Anyways, last point of grammar: Have something done. Here we go!!!!

Step 1. Introducing Have Sth Done and Guided Practice

Note: Use the arrows to enlarge the presentation.

Fun: For the exercise in the last slide, put students in groups of three and vote for the most extravagant luxury within the group and then within the class. This will encourage everybody to participate and have a nice laugh while learning.

STEP 2: The killing of the two birds with one stone. Shadow Reading.

Now, you might be wondering why I have chosen the title ‘Kill two birds with one stone’ when it seems like I am just going to explain the structure ‘have something done’. Well, I am and I am not.

In a last attempt to try to improve my students’ pronunciation, I asked them to bring to class their earbuds/headphones and make sure they had a QR Code Reader installed in their phones.

I prepared and assigned them a shadow reading activity which contained, once again, an explanation of the grammar point and some clear examples.

What is shadow reading?

Shadow reading is one of my favourite activities. It is a technique used in language learning to improve students’ pronunciation and fluency. It involves students listening to an audio recording while simultaneously reading the text out loud, trying to match the speaker’s rhythm, intonation, and stress.

How I set it up
  • As you read above, I asked students to bring their earbuds/headphones to class and ensure that they had a QR Code Reader installed on their phones.
  • I gave my students a copy of the text below these lines, and asked them to scan the QR Code.
  • Then, I instructed them to step outside the class, work on the text and come back in 10 minutes.
  • Finally, I invited every student to have a go at reading parts of the text, attempting to mimic the pronunciation and intonation they heard in the video.

Note: while some students made noticeable improvements in their pronunciation, others may have been a little shy to share their progress, but that’s okay! Now they all have a clear model to follow, and they can continue to practice at home with confidence.

A more personal note: I cannot close this section without expressing my total devotion to Simple English videos and to the recently deceased Vicki, my inspirational voice, as well as her husband Jay.  I have always used their videos to warm up my voice before starting class on Monday. (I know you know the feeling)

This is the handout I shared with my students

Shadow Reading de cristina.cabal

The Practice.

Text created with ChatGPT

Introducing Have Something Done

This is how I am planning to introduce the structure Have Something Done. I hope it is helpful!

Situation 1. Students are shown a picture  such as a wedding . Ask leading questions such as Would you like to get married? What sort of preparations are required for  this event?  Make sure students become aware that  one person cannot do it all alone. Ask the students what the solution is or how they cope to elicit that they pay people to do it for them.

Students will most probably tell you that the bride goes to the hairdresser’s and pays someone to do her hair or to paint her nails.

This should be the right time to introduce the structure.

Exactly, so the bride has her hair done at the hairdresser’s and her nails painted at the beautician’s.

Some  more hints :
Wedding dress/ design
Hair /do
Photographs /take
Nails /do
Wedding cake /decorate
Invitations / send
Music at the ceremony /play

 Situation 2. Being rich

Students imagine they are rich and could have all sorts of things done for them, like annoying everyday chores that nobody likes doing plus some luxuries that money allows for.

I’d have my back massaged every day.

Encourage students to use their imagination  and ask them to try to come up with something very extravagant. You can put them in groups of four and vote for the most extravagant luxury  within the group and then within the class. This will encourage everybody to participate and have a nice laugh while learning.

Grammar and some exercises here