Teaching the Passive – Practical Tips

Passive Structures

The Passive structures will be taught in context using appropriate, relevant texts. Continuous comparison with Active Structures is strongly recommended.

Unit Structure – Junior High

In Junior High, I would suggest spending about 3 – 4 lessons on Passive Structures.

Lesson 1 

Oral Activity introducing the concepts: Active vs Passive.

After describing the cartoons, we might have a discussion on the message behind them – an active athlete compared to a passive one. This might lead to a discussion on the concept of active versus passive attitudes / behaviors as an introduction to Active and Passive Structures in Grammar.

Lessons 2 and 3

Presentation of text including many examples of Passive Structures

Comparison of Active and Passive forms of the verb and position of the Subject and Object in Active and Passive sentences.

Lesson 4

Oral and Writing Activities integrating Active and Passive Structures


What did you do to improve your grades in English last year?

What was done by the teacher over the same period?

What will you do next year to improve your grades?

What will be done by your teacher?

How would I approach the issue in High School?

Assuming this subject has been studied in Junior High, I would review the unit for remedial purposes and reinforcement –2 lessons.

How would I plan one of the lessons? The other lessons might follow a similar structure.

1. Oral Activity– about 10 min.

Suggestions (Suitable subjects for class conversation):

Activities done by the students / teachers to solve discipline issues, organize social events, encourage volunteer work. etc.

2. Presentation of a Text including many examples of the structure I intend to teach or review– about 15 min.

Discussion of the text

Underlining and analyzing the structures  I am teaching

Eliciting the rules and summing up.

3. Class practice: exercises, role-plays, writing activities – about 10 min.

4. Homework – carefully guided activities – about 5 min.


And that’s about all for today.

In my next post I will bring examples of texts and exercises.

For more explanations, please see:
דקדוק אנגלי לדוברי עברית, עמ’ 89 – 97

For exercises, please see:
The New Language Guidebook and Workbook, p 160 – 198

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