World Cup draw activity by Viv Quarry (


This activity is designed for the eliminatory stage of the World Cup, after the group stage, when there are only 16 teams remaining.


Activity preparation:


Before class:


Make sure you have double sided copies of Viv's World Cup draw with the prediction page on one side and the results page on the other (print these worksheets using LANDSCAPE printing orientation - in Internet Explorer, click on the arrow next to the printer symbol, select printer configuration and check 'Landscape', then print). Decide on a prize for the student who gets the highest score (Viv is using a Brazil shirt). If this prize is on display in the classroom during the World Cup is should help generate interest.


Make sure you know the translation for all the remaining World Cup teams and vocabulary in English for country, nationality, the people and a person.

Note! The word stress on many countries and nationalities may be different from your students' native language e.g. Portuguese /POR TCHOO GEEZ/


Depending on the level of your students you may pre-teach 'beat sb' and elicit the past and past participle of this irregular verb. Check that your students know that zero in football is 'nil' and that zero in tennis is 'love' (Wimbledon is usually on TV at the same time as the World Cup).


A Microsoft Word version of this predictions sheet can be downloaded from here and used for future World Cups:


World_Cup_Draw_-_Student.doc     (click on the file and select 'Save as' then choose a location on your computer)


Classroom activity


Brainstorm the names of all the remaining teams in the World Cup and put them on the board including nationality / the people / a person. Keep the countries on separate sides of the board according to how they appear in the World Cup Draw sheet! 


Give your students the model "I think the Brazilians will beat the Dutch two - nil". 


Ask the students individually which team they think is going to win the World Cup. Then who they think this team will beat in the final, and what the score will be. Drill the model with your students' own World Cup predictions.


NOTE! only teams from opposite sides of the World Cup Draw sheet can face each other in the final! Therefore, Brazil v England is impossible.



When everyone has made their guesses, hand out the World Cup Draw sheets.


Make sure that all the students have the BLUE 'My prediction' side face up in front of them.


Tell the students to fill in their predicted winner in the "World Cup Champion 2010" box. Then fill the same country in boxes for Group I or II and the quarter finals. Students do the same for the country they predicted would also reach the final. Then ask them to guess what the scores will be. 


Explain what the prize will be for whoever guesses the results with the highest success rate.


Then students try to predict the other semi and quarter-finalists, finally filling in all the remaining the results boxes. Don't forget to explain that if a match ends in a draw it will be decided on penalties, so for example, if they think that Spain will beat Portugal on penalties, they should put a 'P' in the box next to Spain. They can practice the model structure and vocab. for the people in the remaining World Cup countries while filling in their predictions. 

If you like, you can vary the model structure to include country instead of people, in this way "I think Portugal will win on penalties" (the model version you choose will, of course, depend on the level of English of your students).


See an example prediction sheet (Viv's)


If you have a class which isn't very interested in football, put your students in groups to complete this task, but make sure they know that there will only be one prize, so if two students have exactly the same results, no one will win.




Either ask your students to write their names at the top and collect their worksheets at the end of the lesson, then hand them out next class to fill in the results sheet.


or explain the marking scheme (if they guess the right score they get 3 points, if they choose the right winner with the wrong score 1 point - correctly guessing a winner on penalties = 3 points, Correctly guessing a penalty decision but choosing the wrong winner = 1 point) and ask your students to complete the 'results' section at home.


or a mixture of both the above (second round collected, later rounds done by the students at home). 


Create a results table for the classroom wall showing how many points each student (and the teacher) has as the World Cup progresses. If you use a table on the computer, it's easy to move the students up or down as they score more points.


How Viv uses this activity with his private students:




Before the class I print out a copy of the predictions and results sheets for each student (as in the example above, any matches which have already taken place are in a different colour and the results already filled in).


Class activity


First, I revise the vocabulary my students already have in their notebooks for countries and nationalities (see Vocabulary index in Viv's 'How to organise a student notebook' worksheet). Words my students can't remember are added to this section in their Vocabulary Database. If this page is blank, I start by adding the countries, nationalities and people for those that make up Great Britain. Then I elicit the countries remaining in the World Cup and deal with any new vocab. or pronunciation problems, adding these countries to their notebooks.

When this is completed, give the student their copy of the World Cup predictions sheet and ask them who they think will win the World Cup. This country is then filled into the Winner box, and all the boxes for previous rounds. Then I ask them who their choice will beat in the final, and do the same for this country. When all the predicted countries have been filled in, I teach them 'nil', 'draw' and 'on penalties'. Then I teach 'beat sb' and give as an example sentence (which they write next to this word in their notebooks 


"I think the Chinese will beat the Danes 3-0"


 and make sure they can remember that zero in football is 'nil'.   Then I explain how to fill in the score prediction boxes (with a P for the winner on penalties) and while the student is doing this, I create a file for them on the computer for their predictions. When they've finished, I ask them to tell me their predictions using the people for each match (as in the example). Then I ask "what's your prediction for the Paraguay - Japan match?". The students should say "I think the Paraguayans will win on penalties." and I fill in this information on my control sheet. Alternatively, the answer may be "I think the Brazilians will beat the Chileans three - nil" etc. 

When all their predictions have been transferred to my control version, I explain the scoring system and show them that on the reverse side of their predictions sheet is a similar table for them to fill in the actual results of matches.


Follow up


I keep track of my students' points and let them know who is closest to winning the prize. Talking about past World Cup matches is also a good warm up activity before class.


NOTE! As each day goes by, you'll have to up-date the prediction and results pages so that students aren't asked to predict the result of a match which has (nearly) finished.


 Here are some worksheets for football vocabulary.


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