Jessica Randall Jessica Randall

Life Lessons - Section 3/3
Intermediate level


In this section of the lesson, students will practice their speaking and listening fluency through discussing their assumptions about a photograph, listening to an interview about a major life change, and undertaking an activity where they draw a road as a metaphor for their life. This section starts with a discussion about the students' assumptions about a picture of a man and a toddler. This is followed by a listening exercise where students will listen to an interview with the man in the photograph, who has experienced a major life change. Students will listen to this interview twice. After the first listening students will be asked questions about the gist of the interview. They will listen again for detail with set questions provided prior to the second listening. Students will work in pairs for a discussion about the interview. After the listening exercise, students will learn some new "metaphor" vocabulary in preparation for a "freer speaking" exercise. The freer speaking exercise focuses on "present perfect" and "present perfect continuous" grammar aspects. Students will be asked to reflect on their own life and the "Life Changes" they themselves have experienced. After 2 minutes of reflection, they will be provided with handouts on which they will draw a road as a metaphor for their lives. They will choose their own partner for this activity as it may touch on sensitive topics and events.


Abc Photograph of Man and Toddler
Abc Page 68 of Straightforward Intermediate Students Manual
Abc "Life changes" listening exercise
Abc "The Road to Life" Worksheet

Main Aims

  • To provide students with practice in speaking for fluency through the context of life journeys and changes.

Subsidiary Aims

  • To provide gist and detailed listening practice.
  • To provide practice of present perfect continuous tense, and the use of since and for
  • To provide fluency speaking practice in a conversational setting in the context of discussion about a drawing exercise


Introduction (1-1 minutes) • 1. Allow students to reorient themselves to a new teacher and teaching style. 2. Help me to recall names.

- Hello "Can anyone remember where I come from?" Yes. "Can anyone remember my name?" "Well thank you very much. Please forgive me as I am still learning all of yours" Go around saying names and asking them to tell me again if I have forgotten.

Lead-in and pre-listening (5-8 minutes) • Practice fluency by answering questions. Reorient students to the topic of life lessons with new teacher.

- Students will be shown an enlarged copy of the picture of the man and baby on p. 68 of Straightforward Intermediate Students Manual. - Students will be asked to THINK ABOUT their answers to the questions provided above the picture on p. 68, 1. "How has his life changed?" 2. "How has this changed his day-to-day life?" - Ask students to get into pairs to discuss their assumptions about the man and the baby in the photograph. 2 mins - Ask students to share with the whole class what they discussed in pair work. 1 min - Try to prompt responses where necessary and elicit clarification and further responses. Take some general feedback but do not confirm or deny any information. 2 mins

Listening for Gist (7-8 minutes) • Allow students to practice listening for overall meaning and check their assumptions.

- Remind students of the questions. "what were the questions again?" "that's right. How has his life changed? and how has this changed his day to day life?" - Students are then asked to listen to the audio of the interview and see if their ideas were correct. - Play the audio - CD1, track 56. 4.5 mins - In pairs again. Ideas correct/right? (may not need to be specified as they may revert naturally back to pairs) 30sec-1 min - "Were your ideas right or correct?" whole of class discussion. 1 min

Listening for Detail (11-12 minutes) • Practice detailed listening and comprehension

- Hand students a copy of page 68 of the text book. - Point to the questions under "Listening" marked 2, relating to the audio. Ask individual students to read the questions one-by-one. 2 mins - "Can you remember any of the answers?" Whole class discussion 1-3 mins - "Let's see if you were right" - Listen to the audio one more time for students to gain better comprehension and check or obtain their answers. 4.5 - "Check your answers with your partner" 1-2 mins - Take WC feedback - ask students if they were surprised by anything or if they found anything interesting about the exercise. (possible prompt questions "Do you know anyone who has done this?" "Would you do this?" "Why/why not?")

Metaphor learning (4-5 minutes) • To learn vocabulary for commonly used metaphors about "Life Events"

- Write the metaphors on the WB - Ask if any student knows the meaning of any metaphors. - ask students to explain what their understanding is. - help clarify their answers. - For any unknown metaphor, use an example to try to prompt understanding. - Give explanations of all metaphors and check understanding

"The Road of my Life" exercise (9-10 minutes) • Practice speaking fluency in the context of life events. Focus on present perfect and present perfect continuous grammar structures.

- Ask students to think about the 'road' their own life has taken. "I will give you a little time to imagine what your road looks like" - prompt students to incorporate the metaphors "cross-roads", "unexpected turns" etc. "Think about this quietly for the next 2 mins or so" - Hand students a copy of the worksheet "The road to life" Point out the large space for them to draw a picture of their life as a road, starting at the top right hand corner. Point out the ideas and metaphors at the top of the page that they may want to include in their drawings. - "Now I want you to draw your life as a road. Try to draw it honestly. I will give you about 5 minutes time" - "Ok now I want you to CHOOSE YOUR OWN partner to discuss what you have drawn." "Find a partner" "Show your picture to your partner" "Try to listen sympathetically and kindly and try to understand the story" - ask students to swap places so everyone gets a chance to tell their story and everyone gets a chance to listen to their partners. (During this phase of free speaking I will be monitoring the stories and noting any errors).

Delayed Error Correction (if time permits) (1-3 minutes) • Clarify any common or important mistakes to fine tune students English speaking skills.

- Write any error examples on the WB. - Direct classes attention to the errors idetified - Ask if any students are able to identify what the error is. Ask if they or anyone is able to correct it.

End of Lesson Wrap Up Discussion (2-3 minutes) • Summarise Learning and Get Feedback on feelings about lesson

Ask students what they learned from today's lesson and how they felt about it. Engage in WC discussion.

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