Gareth Gareth

Upper intermediate level


Abc page 14 Upper int Speakout
Abc page 128 Upper int Speakout

Main Aims

  • To introduce and provide practice of functional language for polite enquiries

Subsidiary Aims

  • To provide gist listening practice using a text about telephone conversation in the context of polite enquiries
  • To provide specific information listening practice using a text about telephone conversation in the context of polite enquiries
  • To provide accuracy speaking practice in a telephone conversation in the context of polite enquiries about adverts


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

T tells students about their experience of working in a language school and the difficulty they had communicating with students over the phone. T invites Ss to tell them about any issues they've had communicating over the phone in a different country. T asks SS to discuss the following in pairs before OCFB: - Why is it difficult to understand people or be understood on the phone? (Elicit because you can't see the person, accents, intonation, word stress, lack of useful body language or hand gestures, lack of knowledge of common expressions, unable to clarify misunderstandings etc.) - What could we do to make phoning in English easier?

Gist task (5-8 minutes) • To provide context for the target functional language through a listening (telephone conversation)

T guides SS to page 14 Ex. 2a in the student book. Tell them to cover ex. 2b for now with a notebook/hand etc so as not to be distracted, T tells ss that they are going to listen to a telephone conversation and answer the questions. T gives ss 2 minutes to read and understand the questions and clarifies any difficulty understanding the questions. T plays recording and ss work alone listenit-sng and answering the questions. Ss compare their answers in pairs and then listen to the recording again if necessary. T nominates Ss to give answers to the questions and check as a class.

Highlighting (8-10 minutes) • To draw students' attention to the target functional language in written form as an intensive task.

T asks ss to now look at ex 2b on page 14. T puts ss in pairs and asks them to try and fill in the gaps. Tell them to read over and check the sentences make sense etc. If they find this stage challenging, T could give them some prompt words on a whiteboard etc. e.g possible, change. T plays recording again, pausing after each sentence and ss check their answers. Compare in pairs and then check as a class.

Clarification (8-10 minutes) • To clarify the meaning, form and pronunciation of the target language

T draws Ss attention to a few of the sentences in order to highlight functional language and forms. 1. Would you mind putting that in an email for me? 2. Do you mind telling me what it involves? 3. I was wondering if it would be possible for me to change that group T elicits the language used to make these questions more polite. T asks Ss for examples of how the questions might be without the polite functional language and then explains that these are much more direct and so could appear a bit rude as in English we do not have polite forms of 'you' like in Italian and Spanish for example. 1. Can you put that in an email for me? 2. What does that involve? 3. Can I change that group? T directs Ss to page 128 of student book ex 1.3 and looks through the examples together. T asks questions to draw ss attention to form and to check meaning and appropriacy. - which phrases use an -ing form? - which phrases use the infinitive? - which questions use 'if' or a wh- question word? For pronunciation - intonation in polite enquiries, T shows ss ex. 2c. Tell ss to listen and then copy the polite intonation and repeat the sentences in pairs in breakout rooms. T monitors, instantly corrects where necessary and notes down any errors to go through as a class. T asks students questions to highlight pronunciation: -What happens to the intonation at the end of the enquiry? - listen to the intonation pattern in each enquiry. T uses the white board to write down some of the example sentences and note the intonation in the sentences by marking arrows going up or down. T explains that the tendency is for the intonation to go down in the first part and then up towards the end of the question in some types (3,4,5,7 and 8) and then go down at the end in other types of sentences (e.g 1,2 and 6) Drill and practice as a class for students to practice and identify the correct pronunciation and intonation patterns.

Controlled Practice (8-10 minutes) • To concept check and prepare students for more meaningful practice

Ss do ex. 3A in pairs in breakout rooms to practice the correct form of the functional lanaguage for polite enquiries. Ss can also practice asking the questions and using the correct intonation. T brings SS back together and checks answers as a class.

Semi-controlled practice (5-8 minutes) • To prepare students for freer practice stage

T put students into pairs and Ss look at adverts on left of page 14 and choose one to focus on. They decide who will be the caller. They write down some possible enquiries that they could ask on the phone responding to the adverts and also think of possible responses, always focusing on using polite question forms. T will monitor in the breakout rooms and help, prompt when necessary.

Free Practice (8-10 minutes) • To provide students with free practice of the target language

T brings everyone back into the main space and asks pairs to role-play their telephone conversations. T asks the ss to listen carefully to each other and write down what polite language is used and to listen out for correct intonation. T goes through each pair without interrupting and letting them have free practice of the language but notes down any errors in form, appropriacy or pron to use during a short error correction stage, time permitting. Alternatively, these errors could be highlighted at the beginning of the next lesson to check how much they remember.

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