Daylight saving time

Lesson plan overview

This ESL lesson plan is about daylight saving time and the effect changing the clocks twice a year has on us. Students will learn interesting expressions, will watch a short video and will debate the subject of daylight saving time. This lesson will work well in combination with “Phrasal verbs: sleep” and “Idioms: time“.

Speaking: The lesson starts with an initial discussion, which also introduces key vocabulary for this lesson (spring forward, fall back, standard time, daylight saving time). Students discuss the questions in pairs or small groups.

Listening: Next, students watch a video “It’s that time of year again: inside the daylight saving time debate”, and complete extracts from the text with the words they hear. After that they talk about different aspects of daylight saving time.

Vocabulary: Students learn a few expressions related to sleep (a late riser, a morning person, a night owl, oversleep, disrupt sleeping patterns). They look at 6 sentences, each one containing a different expression, and then complete the definitions given, To practise, students choose the correct option to complete 3 sentences, and then they discuss 3 questions given.

Confusing expressions: in time and on time. Students learn the difference between in time and on time and practice with a gap-fill activity.

Debate: Finally, students prepare a debate about daylight saving time. To revise and practise the key vocabulary from this lesson, you can use the set of conversation cards.

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Teacher’s lesson plan

Student’s worksheet

Student’s interactive PDF

Conversation cards PDF

Pre-class activities

To send the pre-class activities to your students, copy the link below.

Vocabulary matching


The first time you watch the video, pay special attention to the correct pronunciation of the following words:

Lots of scientific research has made it clear that having sunlight in the afternoon is more important for Americans’ quality of life, health, and safety than…
But permanent DST does have concrete benefits, like reducing the number of fatal car accidents…
Still, even if states do pass year-round daylight saving time, there’s one last bureaucratic hurdle.

Comprehension questions

In-class activities

Teacher’s lesson plan
Student’s worksheet

Conversation cards PDF

Student’s interactive PDF

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