Jul 16, 2011

Young Victoria: Had Better x Would Rather

I enjoy films about the Royalty. They are always about their kings and queens, but each story has a special flair and uniqueness. I love this great movie. I used the first scene to contrast had better x would rather in a contextualized way.

A. Watch the movie segment and pay attention to the Kensington rules, procedures Queen Victoria has to follow. Then complete the blanks with had better or would rather and the verb provided. Make sure you choose either affirmative or negative forms, according to the information in the segment. Tell your students that we are at the time of the scene and not nowadays in order to make sense.

1. She was born a princess, but she ______________ (have) an ordinary life.

2. Palaces are wonderful, but she _____________ (live) in one.

3. Her life is always in threat, so someone _____________ (taste) her food before her meals.

4. She can't attend school with other children, but she ___________ (go) to a regular school.

5. The Kensington rules are for her protection, so she __________ (sleep) in a room with her mother.

6. She __________________ (walk) downstairs without holding the hand of an adult.

7. Because Victoria is too young, her uncle wants to be her Regency, but she __________ (rule) the Kingdom herself.

8. She is unhappy, she she ____________ (change) her life and ______________ (be) free.



Answer key:


1. would rather have

2. would rather not live

3. had better taste

4. would rather go

5. had better sleep

6. had better not walk

7. would rather rule

8. would rather change / be


Anonymous said...

Hi! love this website and thank you for putting so much time into it. I have a comment about "had better x would rather" for Young Victoria. It's a great idea, but the use of "had better" in the sentences is incorrect, as it is used for future situations, not past. A mother would say as a warning, for example, "You had better come home by 10:00 p.m. tonight, or you will be in trouble." Although the verb is in the past (had), it is used to talk about the present or future (just like "should" is the past form of "shall" but is used to talk about present or future situations, not past situations.) So, the blanks that are supposed to be "had better" should actually be just "had". For example, someone had to taste her food before she ate it. I hope this helps. I really enjoy your blog and hope you continue doing it.

Claudio Azevedo said...

Thanks for the feedback. You are right. The contextualization gives a past idea. What I did was to write the sentences in the simple present tense. Doing so, you are taking the scene as events in the present with future results, not past ones. When we talk about the plot of a movie, we use the presents tense. Thanks.