453 FREE Modal Verbs Worksheets & Exercises
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453 FREE Modal Verbs Worksheets

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GRAMMAR TIP:What Are Modal Verbs?
In the English language, a modal verb is a type of auxiliary verb. The key way to identify a modal verb is by its defectiveness (they have neither participles nor infinitives). In addition, modal verbs do not take the inflection -s or -es in the third person singular, unlike other verbs. A modal verb (also modal, modal auxiliary verb, modal auxiliary) is a type of auxiliary verb that is used to indicate modality -- that is, likelihood, ability, permission, and obligation. The use of auxiliary verbs to express modality is particularly characteristic of Germanic languages. Modal auxiliary verbs give more information about the function of the main verb that follows it. Although having a great variety of communicative functions, these functions can all be related to a scale ranging from possibility ("may") to necessity ("must"). Note that dare and need are much more commonly used as non-modal verbs, taking -s or -es in the third person singular and having an infinitive and past and present participles.
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Source: English Modal Verb on Freebase, licensed under CC-BY
Modal verbs are another very popular topic in ESL classrooms so busy teachers have submitted 453 related worksheets. With so many to choose from and more being added regularly, you should take a look at the variety of worksheets available and consider using one of them with your students. Let’s take a look at some of these brilliant worksheets. This is a simple modal verbs survey activity for elementary learners; the exercise is to help them practice asking and answers questions about what they can do. Another worksheet focuses on using the phrase “must not” and includes all the instructions for a card game. You can find that right here; your lower level learners will certainly enjoy it. There is also an article with some advice for teaching modal verbs so take a look at that before introducing the topic in your classes.
Modal verbs are used in so many different situations that you should include them throughout your ESL course especially when working with intermediate learners. Modals are used for talking about ability and necessity as well as many other things. Make sure students have a clear understanding of certain modal verbs before having a lesson on giving advice or making suggestions. These words are imperative for this type of lesson. You will certainly find a number of occasions to have students practice using modals so make sure you have a good, memorable introduction to get them started.

Recently added worksheets in Modal Verbs:

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JC'S Past Necessity Critical Path

JC'S Past Necessity Critical Path

When teaching past necessity, I have found this critical path very helpful. It helps students differenciate between necessary and unnecessary actions in the past and how to express whether they we ...
1 Upper Intermediate and Advanced
JC'S Needn't Have Critical Path

JC'S Needn't Have Critical Path

When teaching past necessity, I have found this critical path very helpful. It helps students differenciate between necessary and unnecessary actions in the past and how to express whether they we ...
1 Upper Intermediate and Advanced Exam Level
Seen through the Microscope

Seen through the Microscope

I use this PPT to practise speaking with all kind of students, although it is better to use it with skilled students. Whenever I do this activity in class the students have great fun when they see ...
4 Pre-Intermediate Intermediate Upper Intermediate and Advanced Exam Level
Song Worksheet: The Day before You Came (Modal Verbs of Probability)

Song Worksheet: The Day before You Came (Modal Verbs of Probability)

This is a PowerPoint Presentation "Modal Verbs of Probability through the song -The day before you came". Recommended for adult students of the upper-intermediate level. I planned it as a whole le ...
2 Upper Intermediate and Advanced
Should and Shouldn't

Should and Shouldn't

It's a nice speaking exercise to practise "should / shouldn't". Cut the cards, put them face down and make students work in pairs. Each student draws one card, reads it aloud and another student m ...
2 Elementary Pre-Intermediate
Modals - Speculating about the Past

Modals - Speculating about the Past

Three exercises to practice modal verbs to speculate about the past. 1st exercise: could/can't. 2nd exercise must/can't and 3rd might/might not. To be honest I do not exactly remember bu ...
5 Pre-Intermediate Intermediate
Needn't Have Worksheet

Needn't Have Worksheet

This is a worksheet for FCE students to practise needn't have or didn't need to. It has 13 situations with images and a sentence where students have to choose the correct form of the verb: needn't ...
3 Upper Intermediate and Advanced
Semester Test for the 4th Grade

Semester Test for the 4th Grade

The test is for the 4th graders. It contains basic questions using structures such as can/have/do and wh-questions. The grammar areas are: possesive 's, adjectives describing people, present ...
4 Elementary
Lifelong Learning

Lifelong Learning

This worksheet was created to Unit 10 of the New Total English Elementary 2 course book and aims to practice school subjects, expressions in connection with learning and modal verbs (have to, don' ...
2 Elementary Pre-Intermediate
Reading Dreams

Reading Dreams

This worksheet deals with the topic of dreams. It does not focus on any grammatical aspect in particular. It consists of a fill-in the blanks listening about analyzing dreams that I adapted from h ...
7 Intermediate Upper Intermediate and Advanced Exam Level
The Mystery of

The Mystery of "Nasca Lines" (Listening/Reading Activity)

Nasca Lines are one of the greatest mysteries in the world. The worksheet offers you pictures for guessing the story and meaning of these lines using modals of deduction; a running dictation; list ...
6 Pre-Intermediate Intermediate Upper Intermediate and Advanced
Dear Abby-Type Problems/ Giving Advice

Dear Abby-Type Problems/ Giving Advice

This is an activity for free practice of the modal should and other expressions of advice. The students usually love moving around and being in role. It's a fun, dynamic activity, with minimal tea ...
4 Pre-Intermediate Intermediate Upper Intermediate and Advanced
I Can/ I Can't

I Can/ I Can't

This is a presentation with free time activities and sports. Can be used as presentation of using modal verb can/can't for expressing ability. Include sports, outdoor activities, sport games, play ...
3 Complete Beginner Elementary
Free Time Activities and Sports

Free Time Activities and Sports

This is a poster with free time activities and sports. Based on the presentation of using modal verb can/can't for expressing ability. Include sports, outdoor activities, sport games, playing musi ...
4 Complete Beginner Elementary
Modal Verbs: Can, Could, Would

Modal Verbs: Can, Could, Would

A few slides to explain how to use the modal verbs can,could and would.It can be used in the classroom or like support to students outside the classroom.It´s very simple and contains no exer ...
6 Elementary Pre-Intermediate
Movie Worksheet: Peppa Pig- Ice-skating. (Practising 'Can' with Six Year Olds)

Movie Worksheet: Peppa Pig- Ice-skating. (Practising 'Can' with Six Year Olds)

Activities based on a Peppa Pig episode, for young learners aged about 6. Practising "can" in questions and short answers. After watching, a teacher may check the answers and elicit "Yes, he/she c ...
3 Complete Beginner Elementary
Cold Weather Survival Tips

Cold Weather Survival Tips

This worksheet is a reading activity created as one of the tasks in winter English speaking camp. It’s quite informative and deals with the question how to survive/keep warm in cold weather. ...
4 Pre-Intermediate Intermediate Upper Intermediate and Advanced
Street Signs

Street Signs

There are 2 activities in this worksheet, first students have to write the street signs warnings and then draw other signs. It can also be used to review the modal verb must, students would h ...
3 Elementary
The Invention Game

The Invention Game

Distribute a copy of one item to your students. They need to read the instruction and if everything is clear follow them. At the end of the game they should make a final decision of who should be ...
8 Intermediate Upper Intermediate and Advanced Exam Level
Giving Advice Phrases and Situations (Healthy Lifestyle)

Giving Advice Phrases and Situations (Healthy Lifestyle)

This worksheet contains different phrases for giving advice and short role play situations for using them while talking about Healthy Lifestyle. Divide the ss into 2 groups. Cut out the situations ...
11 Elementary Pre-Intermediate Intermediate
Agony Aunt Letters and Giving Advice

Agony Aunt Letters and Giving Advice

In this activitity there are 14 letters of desperate people looking for advice. They have written to Agony Aunt Anne and are waiting for an answer .Can you help them? Use any suitable modal verb. ...
7 Pre-Intermediate
Modal Verbs: Must / Mustn't Elementary Worksheet

Modal Verbs: Must / Mustn't Elementary Worksheet

This is a worksheet for teaching or revising modal verbs at elementary level. There are 2 different activities in which students are asked to mind the examples given and change the sentences ...
4 Elementary
Turkey Information Sheet

Turkey Information Sheet

This is a vacation/holiday activity information sheet about Turkey. It includes sightseeing of three Turkish cities, food & drink, and festival and special events in Turkey. It can be used for ...
5 All levels
Indonesia Information Sheet

Indonesia Information Sheet

This is a vacation/holiday activity information sheet about Indonesia. It includes sightseeing of three Indonesian cities, food & drink, and festival and special events in Indonesia. It can be ...
4 All levels
India Information Sheet

India Information Sheet

This is a vacation/holiday activity information sheet about India. It includes sightseeing of three Indian cities, food & drink, and festival and special events in India. It can be used for an ...
3 All levels

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