Sending an e-postcard
Donna Price-Machado
Level: intermediate
Time: about 2 1/2 hours
10 computers in the class, 30 studen

Warm up/review
Last week we talked about the difference between when to use the past tense and the present perfect continuous. Let’s review that.T. holds up cards with signal words and students

1) say if it’s a signal word for the past or present perfect continuous, and

2) give sentences with the past or present perfect continuous.

In this lesson you are going to practice speaking, writing and using the Internet to send an electronic postcard. You will be using the grammar you have been practicing this week.

Think about a trip you took or a trip you would like to take. Pretend that you are at that place. You are going to send a classmate an electronic postcard. You will choose the picture you want to send and write the message. You must:

  1. Have a greeting followed by a comma,
  2. Use the past tense and the present perfect continuous tense.
  3. Have a closing.

If you have an e-mail account, please come to the board and write your name and your e-mail address. If you don’t have an e-mail address, ask a classmate to help you get an account on yahoo and do that later in the class.

Practice 1
Sit with a partner. Interview him/her about a vacation he/she took and what he/she might say in the postcard.

  1. Where did you go on your vacation?
  2. What did you do there?
  3. How long did you stay there?
  4. Who did you go there?

Read the model of my postcard.

Dear Claudia,
I have been in Paris for three days. I arrived last Saturday and took the subway to the hotel. I was so tired the first night. My friend and I have been walking all over the city. It is a beautiful city. Last night we had a wonderful French meal. I have been eating pastries since we got here!
See you soon.
Your friend, Donna

In your postcard, you must:

  1. Have a greeting and the person’s name followed by a comma
  2. Use the present perfect or the present perfect continuous 3 times
  3. Use the past tense 3 times
  4. Have a closing

Practice 2
With a partner, reread the model. Do the following activities:

Practice 3
Write your postcard. Be sure you use my model as an example of what you need to write.
After you write your postcard, ask a classmate to check it. First read it out loud to your partner. Sometimes you find errors when you read it. Then give your partner the postcard to check.


My name is _______________ The checker’s name is ___________

Circle or write the answer.

1. Is there a greeting? Yes no

2. Is there a comma following the greeting? Yes no

4. How many verbs are in the present perfect or present perfect continuous tense? __

Write two of those verbs here _______________________

5. Write two past tense verbs that you read here ______________

6. Is there a closing? Yes no

After the checker checks your writing, show this sheet to your teacher.

Go the computer with a partner. Dictate this address to your partner:

Click Postcard Rack (Use a projector or if one isn’t available, make an overhead of the postcard choices. Ask students which ones they are interested in)

Look at the postcards. Choose one you want to send a classmate.

Follow the directions to write your postcard. (Make an overhead of the directions or use the projector to show the steps of doing the postcard)

Look at the board and find a classmate’s address you want to send it to.

Send the postcard.

If there are not enough computers available, the teacher will give you and a partner a related grammar activity to do until a computer becomes available.