601 FREE Modal Verbs Worksheets & Exercises
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FREE Modal Verbs Worksheets

Can you teach modal verbs? Will you be able to? Should you look for even better ways to teach them? The answers to all these modal questions are “Yes!” - and that’s why BusyTeacher.org offers 601 modal verb worksheets to bring some fresh, fun ideas to your ESL classroom.

Teaching modal verbs takes some strategy. A lot of other languages don’t have exact one-word equivalents for verbs like “should” and “would,” which means direct word-for-word translation probably isn’t an option. The next-best approach is to give examples - but it’s not always easy for students to guess the difference between, say, “can” and “could” from context alone. Some teachers start with the simplest modal verbs - “can” and “should” - and build up the list from there, using a variety of reading and speaking exercises.

However you plan to combine these approaches, BusyTeacher.org offers a wide variety of worksheets to help make sure your students can read, write, hear, and speak correctly when it comes to modal verbs. The sheer diversity of our worksheets means you’ll never find yourself repeating the same modal verb lesson twice - and the range of activities and exercises they provide will keep your students thinking about modal verbs in every kind of usage and context.

Whether you’re introducing some level-one students to modal verbs for the very first time, helping some level-two students review the modal verbs they’ve already learned, or introducing higher-level students to modal verbs in some new tenses, we’ve got worksheets tailored for your students’ ESL proficiency. With 601 modal verb worksheets to choose from, you’re sure to find some that are just right for your class.

Looking for simple fill-in-the-blank and multiple-choice worksheets to use for quizzes? We’ve got ‘em right here! Interested in active games that help students learn to use modal verbs in realistic conversations? Just take a look below! BusyTeacher.org even has modal verb worksheets designed around popular song lyrics, so your students can show off their newfound understanding of those songs to their friends.

All these worksheets have been created and shared by ESL teachers around the world - teachers just like you, who want to help each other improve the learning potential of their classrooms. They’ve been generous enough to make every worksheet on this site completely free to download, share, modify, and use as you like - you don’t even have to register on our site. All we ask is that, if you have a worksheet of your own that you’d like to share, you click the “Submit a worksheet” button at the bottom of this page to contribute it to our ever-growing community.

BusyTeacher.org’s convenient thumbnail view makes it easy to browse our 601 modal verb worksheets at a glance, without having to click and download each one just to see what it looks like. You can even save time by checking out the top ten most popular modal verb worksheets on BusyTeacher.org, or use the search function at the top of the page to pinpoint exactly the worksheets you’re looking for. We’re sure that, one way or another, you’ll find the worksheet you need. And we’re sure your class will love it!

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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.
Freebase CC-BY
Source: English Modal Verb on Freebase, licensed under CC-BY
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Are All Endangered Species Worth Saving?

Are All Endangered Species Worth Saving?

Anastasiia
The worksheet is based on the video that discusses the problem of animal extinction and human role in preserving wildlife and includes vocabulary in Ukranian. The video puts forward controversial ...
1 Views 5,871 Pre-IntInt
Booking Appointments Worksheet

Booking Appointments Worksheet

Guilherme G Tidon
In this quick exercise, learners will complete the gaps of a phone conversation to book a doctor's appointment with the phrases "I would like to book", "I can't make it", "That works for me", "Ca ...
1 Views 7,094 Pre-IntInt
Going Shopping Fill in the Blank Conversation

Going Shopping Fill in the Blank Conversation

Guilherme G Tidon
In this worksheet, students will fill in the blanks of two conversations at a shop. After that, they will look into the language and vocabulary used in the conversations and analyze their meanings ...
1 Views 10,064 ElemPre-Int
At A Restaurant - Common Words and Phrases

At A Restaurant - Common Words and Phrases

lidia
This is an activity to fill in phrases related to dining at a restaurant. It is a series of words and phrases typically used in Restaurants. At the end students can prepare a conversation using th ...
1 Views 13,313 ElemPre-Int
Can-Cannot

Can-Cannot

Nalan Kenny
This an easy activity which can be done in the classroom or given as homework. The students are asked to match the pictures with verbs/activities by using 'can'. Visual make it easy to understand. ...
1 Views 9,649 Elem
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Peppa Pig. Shopping

Peppa Pig. Shopping

This worksheet is based on 'Peppa Pig' cartoon episode. It was made to revise modal verb CAN. It may be used to speak about fruits and vegetables, quantity and shopping. It will take about 30 mins ...
1 Views 16,602 BegElem
My Classroom Behavior - A Modals Worksheet

My Classroom Behavior - A Modals Worksheet

Vincent Malais
A worksheet to be used at the beginning of the schoolyear. It may help the students about the teacher's expectations during the English lessons. A way to revise modals with an easy fill-in-the-bl ...
1 Views 11,930 Elem
Superheroes and Superpowers - Video and Writing Prompt

Superheroes and Superpowers - Video and Writing Prompt

Tom Leventhall
Discussion/warmer activity centered around superheroes and their superpowers. Students begin by watching a YouTube clip, using it identify a number of superpowers. They then design their own sup ...
1 Views 23,019 Pre-IntIntAdvExam
Can and Can't For Beginners

Can and Can't For Beginners

Eva Vrettou
A worksheet aiming at practising the use of modal verb can and can't for ability. It contains a variety of tasks such as gap filling, matching and multiple choice exercises. It can be used as supp ...
1 Views 15,642 Beg
Can/Can't Classmate Bingo Game

Can/Can't Classmate Bingo Game

Khatuna Tavartkiladze
This activity will help students practise the modal verbs of ability and possibility 'can' and 'can't'. Students play a game of bingo by finding classmates who can do certain things. Each student ...
4 Views 26,488 ElemPre-IntInt
Should/shouldn't

Should/shouldn't

Khatuna Tavartkiladze
Students in turn take cards and ask for advice from the rest of the group. For example, 'I want to improve my English. What should I do?' Students could challenge each other's advice to make the a ...
4 Views 17,269 ElemPre-IntIntAdv
Should and Shouldn't Exercises

Should and Shouldn't Exercises

S.I.
This is a simple worksheet which practices the use of 'should' and 'shouldn't'. The first activity is a gap fill and the second activity asks students to write sentences according to the situation ...
3 Views 37,426 BegElem
Do I Have To? (Chores, Responsible For and Have to/Has To)

Do I Have To? (Chores, Responsible For and Have to/Has To)

suhedabektas
This worksheet includes fill in the blanks activity with a wordcloud which is about household chores. Also, it provides a sentence level activity, in that part learners use 'have to/has to' and 'r ...
5 Views 20,977 Pre-Int
Do, Does and Can

Do, Does and Can

I have designed this PDT to review the grammar of do/ does and can. Students are asked to write short answers to the questions. It includes two activities and it contains the names of African and ...
2 Views 14,520 Elem
Song Worksheet: These Boots Were Made for Walking

Song Worksheet: These Boots Were Made for Walking

BusyTeacher Contributor
This is a listening song worksheet. Your students will hear how people sound when they speak English through a song. There is a list of the special contractions and uniquely pronounced words at ...
5 Views 16,315 BegElemPre-IntInt
Song Worksheet: Masters of War by Bob Dylan

Song Worksheet: Masters of War by Bob Dylan

Blanca
It's based on the song "Masters of War" written by Bob Dylan, with activities to be done while listening to the song. Students will have to organize and complete lyrics as well as look for example ...
4 Views 20,094 Elem
World Heritage Site Rules

World Heritage Site Rules

Filomena Francisco
This worksheet can be used in conjunction with other World Heritage Site activities. In groups, students use imperatives, 'must, and 'should' to create their own rules for visitors to World Herit ...
2 Views 9,054 Pre-IntInt
Test- Grade 8

Test- Grade 8

nergis memili
This is a test for grade 8. The answer key is included. Here you can find questions about some grammar like simple past and the past continuous tense. Also there are some questions about suggestio ...
1 Views 14,853 Elem
Find Someone Who

Find Someone Who

Khajit Foythong
Teach can and can't. You can use this worksheet for  as an ice-breaking activity. First, teach vocabulary. Second, ask students to walk around and ask their friends. Finally, ask students & ...
5 Views 14,450 ElemPre-Int
Song Worksheet: Yes I Can (Paralympics Song)

Song Worksheet: Yes I Can (Paralympics Song)

Gabriela Modroff
This is a worksheet I prepared to make my students watch the youtube video promoting the Paralympics in Rio de Janeiro. There are 4 exercises : a fill in the blanks, order the lines, match the lin ...
4 Views 17,811 Elem
Can – Can’t – Could – Couldn’t Multiple Choice Test

Can – Can’t – Could – Couldn’t Multiple Choice Test

hassy
This worksheet is designed to test the students' understanding of  modals can, can't, could, and couldn't. It is composed of 8 multiple choice questions which are particularly suitable for &n ...
3 Views 25,373 Int
Movie Worksheet: Should Have, Would Have- Discussing Mistakes

Movie Worksheet: Should Have, Would Have- Discussing Mistakes

English Through Videos
This fun video activity is to practise using past modals "should have.." and "would have..." to discuss past mistakes. The video describes the top ten stupid mistakes made by people. Learners shou ...
14 Views 25,493 Pre-IntIntAdvExam
Song Worksheet: Without You by Usher

Song Worksheet: Without You by Usher

eliasvitola
This listening activity has 3 exercises for students to review some modals such as "can" for ability and "will" for future, both positivie and negative stataments, and some common action verbs us ...
4 Views 21,236 Elem
Animals

Animals

This worksheet is appropriate for teaching animals related vocabulary items and animals abilities. This worksheet contains two parts. It's suitable for young learners and elementary students. ...
2 Views 14,207 BegElem
Movie Worksheet: Family Guy (Future Predictions)

Movie Worksheet: Family Guy (Future Predictions)

English Through Videos
This fun video activity is to practise future predictions. While watching a clip from the hit TV series Family Guy, learners have to make predictions about what they expect to happen next. Learner ...
9 Views 28,280 ElemPre-IntIntAdvExam

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