Sunday, October 19, 2008
Weird scenes inside the classroom
This exercise is aimed at post-intermediate EFL/ESL students and is a great way to practice listening skills using real life examples.
1 - Ask students if they have heard any strange or unusual stories in the news. If the subject matter is too difficult for them to express in English allow some limited use of L1 or get them to write down the words they need in L1, translate them and write on the board. The others have to guess the story's content.
2 Do the same thing from one of Yahoo Odd News stories. For example (click here);
flowers, sorry, 92 year-old, burglary, England,
3 Students write down a few sentences about what they story could be about and then compare them with their partners.
4 Give out a photocopy of the story or get them to find the story using the words in a Google search.
5 Students then compare and contrast their own version with official one. This is great practice for students doing the FCE/CAE/CPE exams.
6 Next, explain to students that they are going to hear ten weird stories from the BBC's Newsbeat Odd Box. They have to write down as many details of the story as possible.
Just be careful about which ones you choose as some stories may be unsuitable for younger students.
7 After playing the video once allow students to check their answers with each other. Play it again.
8 Students then work as a class to write a paragraph for each video. They then take turns in reading out their paragraphs.
9 Explain to students that they are in charge of a national TV station and that they time for just two of the stories mentioned. They discuss in groups which ones would be most intereting for a national audience and why.
10 Elict answers
As a follow up ask students to choose one of the stories from Odd Box and find out more information about it. this could be presented in the form of a TV report which can be recorded by students using the video camera on their mobile phones and posted via YouTube onto a class blog.