brown wooden door
Type: Grammar
Originally published on February 20, 2023 and last updated on May 15, 2023

Comparative questions are an essential part of English grammar that allow us to compare two or more things or ideas. These grammar-based discussion topics are commonly used in everyday conversations, making them a crucial topic for English language learners to master in order to improve their overall level and fluency.

By practicing comparative questions, English learners can develop their language skills in several ways. First, they can expand their vocabulary and learn new ways to express ideas by exploring different types of comparisons. Second, they can improve their grammar and sentence structure by learning how to use comparatives correctly. Finally, practicing comparative questions can help learners develop their listening and speaking skills, allowing them to engage more confidently in conversations with native speakers.

Go through the theory of the grammar point to make sure your students fully understand when and how it is used, and then go through the various conversation questions. Try and engage the students in conversation with follow up questions or comments if they only give one short answers.

Explanation and Examples

A comparative is a grammatical structure used to compare two things, people, places, or actions to show that one has more or less of a quality or characteristic than the other. The structure typically uses the words “more” or “less” and compares adjectives or adverbs.

For most adjectives with one syllable, the comparative form is created by adding “-er” to the end of the adjective. For example:

Sarah is taller than John.
The book is longer than the movie.
For adjectives with two or more syllables, the comparative is created by adding “more” or “less” before the adjective. For example:

She is more intelligent than her brother.
The coffee is less bitter than the tea.
There are some irregular comparatives that do not follow these patterns, such as “good” becoming “better” and “bad” becoming “worse”.

Using comparatives can help English learners to express their opinions and make comparisons more effectively. It is important to note that the word “than” must always be used after the comparative to make a complete comparison.

Conversation Questions

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  • What things are cheaper now than they were 10 years ago?
  • Which season do you prefer, summer or winter? Why?
  • What do you think is more difficult, learning a new language or a musical instrument?
  • Do you think it's easier to make friends in person or online?
  • What do you think is more beneficial for your health, exercise or a balanced diet?
  • Which is more enjoyable, watching a movie at home or going to the cinema?
  • What do you think is more dangerous, driving a car or riding a motorcycle?
  • Do you think it's easier to make a decision alone or in a group?
  • Which is more valuable, money or time?
  • Do you think it's better to have a few close friends or many casual friends?
  • Would you say it's more important to have a good work-life balance or to work hard and advance your career?
  • Is it more productive to work from home or in an office?
  • Would you say it's more effective to study alone or with a group?
  • Do you think it's more important to have a stable job or a job with higher pay?
  • Would you say it's more difficult to forgive or to forget?
  • Is it more challenging to learn a new language as an adult or as a child?
  • Would you say it's more satisfying to achieve a personal goal or to help someone else achieve theirs?
  • Do you think it's more economical to buy a hybrid car or a traditional gasoline-powered car?
  • Would you say it's more stressful to be a student or to be employed?
  • Do you think it's more advantageous to pursue higher education or to gain work experience?
This conversation topic was prepared by Gregory

Gregory is a qualified TEFL teacher who has been teaching English as a Foreign Language (ESL) for over a decade. He has taught in-person classes in Spain and to English learners around the world online.