Lightening vs Lightning vs Lighting - English Grammar - Teaching Tips


The three words lightening, lightning and lighting are easily confused by English learners and even native speakers. Let's take a look at the differences. Lightening is the present participle of the verb to lighten describing the action of making something less heavy. A good example would be "I was lightening the load on my horse because it was exhausted." Lightning refers to a streak of static electricity through the sky usually accompanied by thunder, as here "I was struck by lightning while playing golf in a storm." Lighting is the arrangement of light especially in photography. A suitable example for this would be "The photo was dull because the lighting wasn't good enough".

Below you can read feedback from an ITTT graduate regarding one section of their online TEFL certification course. Each of our online courses is broken down into concise units that focus on specific areas of English language teaching. This convenient, highly structured design means that you can quickly get to grips with each section before moving onto the next.

In this unit, I learned that discussing past holidays or events is one way to get students talking and practicing past simple. Also, that an even better way to get them to discuss past perfect continuous is to ask them what they had been doing up until we got to class. For students, as it is for myself, I also learned a way to remember which aspect each type of past tense verb falls into. The forms, being ending in -ed, was blank-ing, had blank-ed, or had been blank-ing all correlate to a specific aspect and that makes it easy to identify them.