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Teaching Practice 5b - Politically Incorrect
Upper intermediate level


In this lesson SS will learn about the past tense of the modal verb "should" which is "should/shouldn't have + past participle". Their knowledge on the topic will be reinforced with controlled, as well as semi-controlled speaking and writing activities.


Abc Straightforward Upper Intermediate Student's Book CD
Abc Computer
Abc Projector
Abc Exterior speakers
Abc Handouts photocopied from Straightforward Upper Intermediate Student's Book pages 61 and 233

Main Aims

  • To provide clarification and practice of "should/shouldn't have + past participle" in the context of political incorrectness.

Subsidiary Aims

  • To provide fluency and accuracy speaking practice for criticisms of past actions using "should/shouldn't have + past participle" in the context of embarrassing situations.


1. Lead in (5-5 minutes) • To create interest in the topic and to refer to the previous lesson

- Introduce yourself - Show SS a video of George Bush in which a protester throws shoes at him in Iraq during a conference - Ask SS questions to elicit the answers in the paranthesis. Why did the man throw shoes at President Bush? (To protest him) What was the man doing? (Protesting) How did the protester feel? (Angry) - Ask another question: "How do you think President Bush should've felt after this incident?" Elicit the answer "He should've felt embarrassed / ashamed." - Show the same video from another aspect. Then ask "Does he look embarrassed? How does he look?" Elicit the word "amused." "He looks amused." - "Discuss in pairs 'How would you feel if you were George Bush and a protester threw shoes at you?' I want you to use the words you learned in the previous lesson on page 60." Give them 2 minutes. Project on the board phrases from the exercise on page 60: - acutely embarassed? - squirred with embarrassment? - would you blush? - would you go bright red? - humiliated? - ashamed? - self-conscious? Monitor the SS while discussing. Prepare feedback. Ask a few students for answers.

2. Listening to the recording for ex. 1 (4-5 minutes) • Guided discovery / to familiarize SS with the use of "should/shouldn't have + past participle".

- Tell SS that you're now going to play a recording. Show them (on your chest) exercise 1 on the sheet. Tell SS that this is the text of the recording. Instruct SS to listen carefully and while listening, to fill in the blanks with "should" and "shouldn't". - CCQ. You are going to do only the exercise number? (1) What will you write in the blanks? (should and shouldn't) - Give SS the handouts. - Give them time to look at the questions. - Then check if they are ready. Start the recording. - Monitor from where you stand - After the recording ends, tell SS to check their answers with their partners - Project the exercise on the board. Write the answers down while SS are busy checking their answers with partners - Tell SS to compare their answers with the ones on the board

3. Skimming the texts and matching the statements in ex. 1 (13-14 minutes) • To deduce meaning

- Tell SS: "In the previous lesson, you read the stories about two politicians Gloystein and Prescott. (show the SS the two texts). Now I want you to skim these two texts to remember it. You have 4 minutes." - Pair work. After they finish skimming, instruct SS to work in pairs and match the statements in ex. 1 to the politicians in the texts. Instruct them to write either Gloystein or Prescott next to the statements. Tell them that one of the statements refers to both politicians. - Ask ICQs. "What do you write next to each statement?" (the name of the politician it is talking about) - Give the SS 5 minutes to complete the task - Monitor - When time is almost up, ask one of the SS whose pair has finished the task to come to the board and write the answers. Ask the SS if they agree with the answers. (2 minutes) - Pair work. Tell the SS to discuss with their partners: "Which statements do you agree with?" Give them 3 minutes to discuss.

4. Five Small Mistakes (7-8 minutes) • To practice grammar through speaking

- Change the SS' places. - Pair Work. Give the SS 3 minutes to think about five small mistakes they have made in their lives. Tell them to write them down on a paper and then tell their partners about them by also explaining to them what they should or shouldn't have done. Give the SS 4 minutes. - Monitor - Ask a few SS to talk about one of their mistakes and what they think they should/shouldn't have done about them.

5. Freer Practice - Cards (10-13 minutes) • To reinforce SS' knowledge on "should/shouldn't have + past participle"

- Show the cards to the SS - Instruct them to take one card for each and then in pairs, tell one another a stories suitable with the picture on the cards - Show an example by making a short demonstration - Give the SS the cards - Give them a few minutes to think about stories they are going to tell according to the pictures on the cards - After they are ready, put them in pairs and tell them that one of them will tell their story, while their partner will play the role of an annoying friend who always criticizes everything using "should/shouldn't have" - SS take it in turns to tell ther partner their story (using I) and make it sound as interesting as possible. Encourage the SS to use some of the embarrassment vocabulary from the previous lesson - Monitor - When finished, ask students to swap cards and do the activity again with new stories - Ask SS to stand up and mingle, hearing lots of stories and giving a lot of criticism.

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