Leigh Davidson Leigh Davidson

Relationships Part 1: Dating
Intermediate to Upper-Intermediate, Prep Speaking level


In this lesson Ss will discuss many subjects connected to the concepts of dating and relationships. A Hot English Magazine article and a short film will guide Ss to critically consider dating (and its advantages and disadvantages) in the electronic age. The lesson will conclude with a discussion on age gap (between partners) and its potential effects on a relationship. The conclusion of this lesson will be a springboard for the proceeding lesson, on marriage and relationships.


Abc The Rules of Dating

Main Aims

  • To informally discuss and provide an opinion about tradition and its role/function in society--specifically concerning the function of dating for the individual and the collective consciousness

Subsidiary Aims

  • To teach and review some slang terms that are used in everyday speech while talking about relationships and dating


Warmer/Lead-in (5-8 minutes) • To set lesson context and engage students

Write on the WB RELATIONSHIPS: DATING. Elicit from the Ss what they think are some traditional ways of meeting people. "How do we traditionally meet someone who we may eventually date? (e.g. at a bar, in school, a friend of a friend)" Highlight that you are not talking (and asking) about any of the electronic options provided to us by the Internet and smartphone applications. Write the Ss answers on the WB. Elicit from the Ss what they think are some non-traditional/modern ways of meeting people (e.g. dating website, advertisements, smartphone applications). "With today's technology, how has dating, and meeting a potential partner, changed?" Write the Ss answers on the WB.

Exposure: How to Find the Perfect Partner! (8-10 minutes) • To provide a model of production expected in coming tasks through reading

Write the following dating websites on the WB: "Scientificmatch.com; Darwindating.com; Theuglybugball.com; Farmersonly.com; Meet-an-inmate.com; and Meetattheairport.com." Elicit from the Ss their thoughts on what type of person they think each dating website is targeting. Then divide the Ss up into groups, distribute the "How To Find the Perfect Partner" HO, and instruct them to read and discuss what each website is for. "First, read the article in your group to find out what type of person each dating website is targeting? Second, discuss your thoughts on these specific dating websites. Do you think any of them support negative behaviors--like racism or being exclusive for example? Also, think about what type of person might use each dating site--one looking for a serious, or a non-serious, relationship?" Following GW discussion, bring everyone together for WC FB.

Productive Task: Perfect Partner (23-25 minutes) • To provide an opportunity to practice target productive skills

Referring to the previously discussed HO ('How to Find the Perfect Partner!'), ask the following question to the WC: "As the title of the article claims, there is a perfect partner to be found on the Internet. My question for you is, is there really a perfect partner for each and every one of us?" Instruct the WC, in their groups, to define their 'perfect partner' (or as close to a 'perfect partner' as possible). "What four characteristics/traits/qualities should your ideal partner have?" Following GW discussion, bring the WC together for FB. Under the header MY IDEAL PARTNER, write some of the Ss answers on the WB. Inform the WC they are now going to watch a short film, titled '97% Love Match.' Provide a brief synopsis of the film. "A man is matched with another unknown women, on a train, through a smartphone dating application. According to the application, the match is 97%." 1) Instruct the Ss to think about their previous discussion on 'ideal partners.' "Can an algorithm really 'match' two people and can the 'match' be that close to perfect (at 97%)?" 2) Instruct the Ss to specifically observe what the man does in the film, following his 'match.' "Do you think the man's approach and response was appropriate? Should the man have responded differently?" 97% Love Match Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BjEdc6-FNTc&t=333s Following a viewing of the film, bring the WC together for FB and a response to the previous questions. Expand the topic further with some questions concerning smartphone dating apps, in general. --"Is it possible to 'find love' anywhere nowadays, thanks to your smartphone?" --"Do apps such as Tinder make finding a romantic partner less romantic?"

Useful Language: Phrasal Verbs on Relationships (8-10 minutes) • To highlight and clarify useful language for coming productive tasks

PHRASAL VERBS ON RELATIONSHIPS. Write on the WB some phrasal verbs related to dating and relationships: "Get on/along with someone (both for friends and for romance); fall for someone; hit it off (both for friends and for romance); go for; to have a thing with someone; chat someone up/hit on someone; to make a move on someone; to come on strong; to stand someone up; split up/break up; make up; ask someone out and go out with someone (what is the difference between these two phrases?); break it off with someone." Try to elicit the definitions from the WC.

Productive Task: Rules to Dating (15-18 minutes) • To provide an opportunity to practice target productive skills

Write on the WB DATING RULES. Elicit from the WC whether they think there are 'rules' to dating or not? Focus on Turkish traditions to guide the discussion, if Ss get stuck on an answer. Write some of the Ss' answers on the WB. Regroup the Ss and instruct them to share with each other their own 'rules' and thoughts on dating. Distribute the HO on "Rules of Dating." Write on the WB some key language that Ss may be unfamiliar with and briefly explain--GOING DUTCH, BLIND DATE, DOUBLE DATE. Following GW discussion, bring the WC together for FB.

Relationship Age Gaps: Productive Task (25-30 minutes) • To provide an opportunity to practice target productive skills

Write on the WB AGE GAP. Start the discussion with some WC response, asking Ss, "How much is too much of an age gap between two people in a relationship? 5 years; 10 years; 15 years? What would be some potential problems that a couple might experience if one of the people in the relationship is of a significantly older age?" Write on the WB the following situations: "25 year-old man with 40 year-old woman; 17 year-old man with a 40 year-old woman; 40 year-old man with a 17 year-old woman; 80 year-old man with an 18 year-old woman." In their groups, have the Ss discuss these types of relationships. "Have you seen any of these relationships before in Turkey? Are any of these relationships illegal (not allowed) in Turkey? Why do you think two people, with such a large age gap, might get into a relationship? Do you think relationships like these, with such a large age gap, can work? Why or why not? Does it matter, in these types of relationships, who is the older partner (the man or the woman)?" Following some group discussion, elicit WC FB from each group. Elicit from the WC... "Would you be concerned if one of your parents re-married somebody twenty years younger? Why (not)?" Distribute the HO on "Age and Relationships" and provide the Ss another opportunity for GW discussion. Then elicit some WC FB. Write on the WB SUGAR DADDY and SUGAR BABY. Try to elicit from the Ss what they think these slang terms mean, based off of the personal advertisement in the HO.

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