Aug 13, 2011

Avalon: Modal Verbs May (Permission) x Can (Ability)

This scene seems to be especially made for teachers of English who are teaching the difference between CAN and MAY. This grammar point can be quite confusing for Brazilians, because both modals have the same translation - poder - in Portuguese, so the meaning can be unclear for us. This segment helps students understand the difference.

I. Match the verbs with the definition:

1. CAN

2. MAY

( ) It is if you are capable of doing something.

( ) It is asking for permission.

II. Watch the movie segment and check your answers.

III. Now read the dialog between a Brazilian teacher of English and a Brazilian student. Then complete the blanks with Can or May.

*Cultural note:
The native language spoken in Brazil is Portuguese.

T - Hello, students.
S - Hello, teacher. __________ I go to the restroom?

T - Not now. After class, OK?
S - Okay. _______ I speak Portuguese*?

T - Only if it is really important. Is it?
S - No, it isn't. __________ I do the homework now?

T - Not now. It is HOME work, dear.
S - Okay, teacher. But _______ I do the homework or is it very difficult?

T - The homework is easy, relax.
S - ____ I speak English like an American?

T - Well, not now, but in a near future...
S - Great! _______ I drink some water now?

Answer key:

I. 1, 2

III. may, may, may, can, can, may


Ann said...

Hi Claudio,

Just posted a link to this on the TeachingEnglish facebook page if you'd like to check for comments.

Please feel free to post there whenever you have anything you'd like to share.



Claudio Azevedo said...

Tanks, Ann. I'm a frequent visitor of your facabook page. See you.

F Shamim said...

hi claudio!

you've done a great job.i really appreciate your effort. I'm sure it's going to work in my class. I've just discovered your blog but believe me I'm going to be a regular visitor of your blog now. thanx a lot!


Claudio Azevedo said...

Thanks a lot. It is great to hear that!

shutterbug_iconium said...

Thanks for the activity.

I ripped that part in a better quality. Here's the link

Unknown said...

Claudio, I just want to dedicate you a bitt of my time in order to thank you a lot for all the resources that you give to the English teaching world. You do not imagine how useful I have found this blog. Thanks for your professionalism and your innovation in these kind of activities. Take care. Nicolás Sierra from Colombia.

Claudio Azevedo said...

Thanks for your kind words. Greetings to Colombia, a brother country.

Unknown said...

Your blog is amazing. I love using it with my pupils and they always enjoy a ,movie segment or two. Thanks to your hard work my pupils get to learn easily the fun way.
Thank you so much.
Ya'ara from Israel.

Claudio Azevedo said...

Thanks for your motivating words