Teaching Practice 3b - Speaking in the form of asking questions
Upper Intermediate level
To provide Ss practice in speaking with one another, asking questions and answering with the use of strong and opinionated agreeing and disagreeing phrases.
To provide Ss practice with functional grammar, specifically useful for opinionated statements in agreement and disagreement.
Procedure (32-46 minutes)
Start the Ss thinking about the context (the Information Age and its pitfalls, including the risk of gathering inaccurate information from the multitude of varying sources) with a funny video ["If Google Was a Guy (Part 5)"]. Instruct the Ss to think about the Internet, the types of information you can collect from it, and what are some of the problems with using the Internet as a source for information? Following the video, ask the Ss some CCQs. "Was Google ever frustrated with the search questions? Did any of the questions produce results different from what the person asking the question wanted?" Prompt the Ss to talk in pairs about what was the last piece of information they searched for on the Internet and was their search result accurate? Did your search engine come up with something different from your desired results?
Reorganize the Ss into new groupings. Pass out cut strips of phrases to the Ss (split collocations from matching Exercise 2 from the New Cutting Edge: Upper Intermediate Student's Book). Ask the Ss to match the split phrases with each other that make the most sense. Have the Ss walk around the room and check each group's answer (peer-checking). Then pass out an answer key. Prompt the Ss to look at section B of the Exercise. "Decide which of the phrases you just completed express your opinion, someone else's opinion, or being unsure about something." Write on the WB columns "Your Opinion," "Someone Else's," and "Unsure" and have the groups fill out the columns with the appropriate phrases. Drill pronouncing "thought" ("the," "thought," and "that"), highlight the difference between "if you ask me" and "if you asked me" and pronouncing "I've" and "honest."
Elicit from the Ss some ways to show agreement and disagreement. "In a conversation, what can we say to our partner to tell them that we agree or disagree with what they are saying? Discuss in pairs." Quickly elicit some ideas from the WC. Write the statement on the WB, "The Internet is the best place to find information you are looking for." Pass out a HO with some example sentences, demonstrating a range of agreeing-disagreeing statements, responding to the WB question. Ask the Ss to read each sentence and determine in pairs how strongly the statement agrees or disagrees with the opinionated sentence. Write on the WB 1 through 5. "1 means the statement strongly disagrees and 5 means the statement strongly agrees." CCQ: What would 3 mean? [Unsure] What would 2 mean [slightly disagrees] And what would 4 mean [slightly agrees]. Call on the pairs to order the agreement-disagreement phrases. Then drill for pronunciation, stress, and intonation, some of the more difficult phrases ("I completely agree;" "I think it depends on...;" "I agree in some ways but...").
Provide the speaking HO from Global: Upper Intermediate Coursebook. Prompt the students to look at "The Information Age" section. Refer them back to the video shown at the beginning of the class. "Remember the video we watched at the beginning of the class. And your discussion about getting information from the Internet and whether or not that information was accurate? Read through the statements on the right side of the HO and decide whether you agree or disagree with the statement, and how much. Again, 1 means completely disagree and 5 means... and 3 mean...? Please circle on the HO individually. Write down examples for why you agree or disagree."
Mix up the Ss in new pairs and tell them to discuss with each other their responses to each statement. Don't forget to explain why you agreed or disagreed with a statement. Try to use some of the opinion and agreeing/disagreeing phrases we worked on earlier. Provide a few model sentences: "If you ask me, information is very easy to find today. I have so many resources to access." Ask one of the Ss if they agree or disagree with me. Prompt them to use on of the agreeing/disagreeing phrases. Following 5-7 minutes of discussion, ask a few pairs what their partner's opinion was about a statement. Ask if the Ss agrees or disagrees with their partner. Allow for time for error correction following FB. Maybe focus on pronunciation if the students are still tripping up on some of the opinion phrases.