Refresh Now B1

Refresh Now B1

Teaching tip

Not long now! Refresh Now B1 is published in February 2016, so let’s take a closer look to see what makes it refreshingly different with terrific texts, topics and tasks.


Have a look at Unit 3 and you’ll soon see that the texts have up-to-the-minute themes. Clowns Without Borders on p. 22 discusses refugee camps – something that certainly deserves our attention these days. And below the text, students have the chance to extract and exploit the vocabulary and to give their own opinion. There are Helpful phrases (p. 23) such as It’s not a simple problem and There are many factors. There are clearly laid out grammar points: on p. 23 students practise present perfect and past simple. And then there is more opportunity for students to talk about their own personal experiences.

On the third page (p. 24) in Unit 3, students learn in How to do it the language to offer help – valuable and practical expressions for use inside and outside the classroom. Students are asked to write a reply to a text message – a task that is of great relevance to learners. And again, there is more opportunity for students to talk about their own experience and to give their own opinion: Which countries in the world have the worst problems at the moment?

The Practice page (p. 25) consolidates the language learnt in the first three pages giving students the chance to write some sentences about themselves, e.g.: When did you last offer to help someone?

The three Focus on pages (pp. 26-28) are of course flexible: use them in the classroom or at home. The Focus on Grammar page deals systematically with the grammar learnt earlier in the unit with plenty of exercises nicely mixed with some cultural knowledge: in this case on p. 26 - Red Nose Day. The second and third Focus on pages expand the topic and the grammar used earlier in the unit. On p. 27 Remember? is one of the titles – with plenty of relevant information students can take away with them to help them remember, followed by some present perfect questions: Have you ever forgotten ...? Have you ever met …? which neatly combine present perfect with personalization.
And on p. 28 Helping hands, just take a look at those gorgeous penguins in their pullovers – enough to make you want to learn how to knit in English!
Below the text there’s some idiomatic language in Phrasebook: Words and phrases with hand.

And each unit finishes with Words and phrases, useful words and expressions to help students expand their vocabulary, including a Now you box, where students can write down six words or phrases from the unit of particular importance for them.

So whether it’s Gender roles, Paddington Bear, Finding a partner or Pocket money, you and your students will be motivated and enthused. And you can be sure that Refresh Now B1 is indeed refreshingly different, refreshingly individual and refreshingly flexible.

If you’d like a flavour of Unit 3, Refresh Now B1, then try this activity below with your class in the next lesson …


Have you ever…? (level A2 upwards, 15+ minutes)

Grammar: Present perfect and past simple

  • Write the following (uncompleted) questions on the board:
    1 Have you ever seen …?
    2 Have you ever eaten …?
    3 Have you ever worn …?
    4 Have you ever travelled in a(n) …?
    5 Have you ever slept in …?
  • Ask students to complete the questions with their own ideas.
    For example:
    1 Have you ever seen Big Ben? / Angela Merkel?
    2 Have you ever eaten snails? / horsemeat?
    3 Have you ever worn a dirndl? / a kilt?

    4 Have you ever travelled in a canoe? / an aeroplane?
    5 Have you ever slept in a tent? / a five-star hotel?
  • Before students ask each other the questions, remind them that when we talk about an indefinite time (unbestimmte Zeit) in the past, we use present perfect, and when we talk about a definite time (bestimmter Zeitpunkt) in the past, we use past simple.
  • Model the dialogue with a more confident student:
    - (Maria), have you ever seen Big Ben?
    - Yes, I have.
    - When did you see it?
    - When I was in London (in 1998).
  • In pairs, students ask each other their questions. If one student answers, Yes, I have, then the other student should find out more details.
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Refresh Now B1

Refresh Now B1

Teaching Notes
Lynda Hübner
Refresh Now B1

Refresh Now B1

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