Keri Hughes Keri Hughes

LISTENING & WRITING: famous historical figures
Elementary level


In this lesson, students will listen to 5 clues about two famous people (William Shakespeare and Marilyn Monroe), and then will have to guess who they are. After a quick vocabulary lesson on word formation and professions, students will write their own clues about a famous man and woman (both dead), making use of "was/were"


Abc Lesson 7 Powerpoint
Abc 7A| Listening & Writing exercise a, audio 3.49

Main Aims

  • To provide product writing practice of a short report in the context of historical figures

Subsidiary Aims

  • To provide deduction listening practice using a text about mini-biography in the context of historical figures
  • To provide clarification of professions in the context of historical figures


Warmer/Lead-in (3-5 minutes) • To set lesson context and engage students

Present on the OHP 5 "clues" about two historical Turkish figures - Ara Güler and Sabiha Gökçen. Have the students read the clues aloud, and ask the class if they have any guesses about who the people are. Then show slides with their names and photos.

Useful Language - Vocabulary exercise b (8-10 minutes) • To highlight and clarify useful language for coming productive tasks

Variation of vocabulary exercise b on page 53, discussing word formation in terms of professions. Write the following nouns/verbs on the board (on either side of the OHP), show the job photos on OHP and see if students can guess the names of professions. Don't forget ECDWS - We often add "-er" or "-or" to a verb (ex: writer, actor). - We often add "-ian", "-ist" or "-man"/"-woman" to a noun (ex: musician). 1. sing (v) --- singer 2. compose (v) --- composer 3. politics (n) --- politician 4. science (n) --- scientist 5. police (n) --- policeman / policewoman 6. novel (n) --- novelist 7. business (n) --- businessman / businesswoman 8. sail (v) --- sailor 9. art (n) --- artist

Exposure - Listening & Writing exercise a (8-10 minutes) • To provide a model of production expected in coming tasks through reading/listening

Listening & Writing exercise a, audio 3.49 --- Elicit / teach the meaning of "clue" (piece of information that helps you find the answer to a mystery or puzzle). Sherlock Holmes, puzzles, etc... Instructions: Listen to five clues about two famous people. Can you guess who they are? Play the audio for 1 first. Have students compare with a partner. Play again if necessary. Then check as a class. 1. He was an English writer He was born in the 16th century. He was married with three children. He was born in Stratford-upon-Avon. He is famous for his plays, for example "Hamlet" and "Macbeth". Play the audio for 2. Have students compare with a partner. Play again if necessary. Then check as a class. 2. She was born in Los Angeles in 1926. She was a famous actress. She was blonde and very beautiful. Her real name was Norma Jeane Baker. There is a famous painting of her by Any Warhol. (Script in Student's Book p. 119, Teacher's Book p. 91)

Productive Task - Listening & Writing exercise b (18-20 minutes) • To provide an opportunity to practice target productive skills

Give students the script from Student's Book p. 119 / Teacher's Book p. 91, as well as the samples for Ara Guler and Sabiha Gokcen. Ask the students to work in pairs. Have them write 5 clues for a famous man and 5 clues for a famous woman (both dead), using "was/were". Examples of information to include: - what nationality they were - where and when they were born - what they were famous for

Feedback and Error Correction - Listening & Writing exercise c (8-10 minutes) • To provide feedback on students' production and use of language

Next put two pairs together. The first pair reads their five clues and the second pair guesses who the famous person is. Then they swap roles. Monitor and check the students' clues as pairs are sharing with one another. Write a few error examples on the board to review. End the class with a few pairs reading their clues for the class to guess.

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