Serkan Serkan

These modern times
Upper-Intermediate level


In this lesson focusing on modern life, students develop their speaking and learn how to make generalisations and exceptions by following a model. Students give their own ideas about the context and compare them with three people who talk about modern life in a recording.


Main Aims

  • To give Ss practice in speaking for fluency and making generalisations and exceptions.

Subsidiary Aims

  • To raise Ss' awareness of and give functional words and phrases for generalising-in general, by and large, etc. - and making exceptions- Not counting, apart from. etc. To give Ss practice in listening for specific information and detail.


Warm-up/ Lead-in (5-7 minutes) • To get Ss interested in the topic.

Write on the board; "Modern life is ............. than in the past". Put Ss in pairs. Ask Ss to think and compare modern life and the past with their own thoughts and fill in the gap. Ask them to write at least three sentences to support their thoughts about modern life. Example: "Modern life is easier than in the past People, in the past, had to make a lot of effort to communicate or go to another country but now, the only thing we need to do is to dial a number or buy a flight ticket. (and two more supporting sentences)" Ask Ss to choose one of the sentences they have written and think about an exception for what they have written. Change the pairs and ask them to talk about their thoughts and exceptions.

Pre-teaching (1.12-1.13-1.14) (5-7 minutes) • to get Ss feel comfortable about the vocabulary and phrases(sometimes grammar) they may not know in the listening part. This way, having students do the activity smoothly without problem.

Tell Ss that you took an exam few weeks ago and It was very important for you. When the exam was about to finish, you checked the time and you had only 5 minutes to finish your writing task and write on the board." When ı saw I had only 5 minutes to finish the exam, I quickened my ............." ask students to fill in the gap. When you get the answers ;fast and quick, ask them to find another synonym if they can't, give the answer yourself drill pronunciation and write the form on the board. Go on telling the story to Ss and write on the board " ....but you had a lot of ideas to write and you had only 5 minutes, first you needed to make a ........... and choose one of them to write." they may say" make a choice/make a decision/selection". Any of them are acceptable, then elicit the answer "instant" by asking " did ı have much time?" so ı had to make a ...... decision/choice/selection". Drill the promunciation and write the form on the board on the left side. Tell students " You are about to marry and you bought a new house" and ask them "what devices and machines do you need to live in this house?" When you get the answers about fridge/oven/TV/Cooker, ask Ss what their names are in general?" Elicit "household appliances" and write the form of appliance and drill the pronunciation. Ask Ss if they have any devices with them and ask them to show it to you. Ask Ss "what do these devices and tools have in common?" they are to say, "practical, electronic, small, we can carry" then elicit the answer "gadget" To check understanding ask Ss, "which one is luxury or extra, gadgets or household appliances?" Can ı live in a house without problem without household appliances or gadgets? "If ı made an instant decision, what does it mean?Does it mean ı have time or ı dont have time? "

Listening/Specific information (4-5 minutes) • to give an input

Tell Ss that they will listen to three people doing the same task.(specific information) Ss listen to check if anyone has the same ideas as them(listening ex 1). Tell Ss to check their answers in pairs, then take some FB.

Listening/detail (6-8 minutes) • to check Ss' understanding to make them familiar with the target language

Focus Ss on Listening ex2 - Ss discuss in pairs to see if they remember any of the answers, then listen to check their answers.(detail) Ss check in pairs, then take FB

Language Focus (3-4 minutes) • to get Ss to be aware of the target language by eliciting/giving examples.

Write on the board" 20 years ago, in geenral, people used to know eachother in the same block of flats." and " Now, except for small towns and villages, people have no idea about their neighbours". and ask Ss to find the phrase or the word which gives the meaning of generalisation or exception in two sentences. (If you dont have time to do LF 3 ex skip second sentence.) Put Ss in pairs and tell that they are going to do the same with the LF ex 1 and ask them to underline the phrases that are used to make generalisations. Take FB.

Language Focus/practice 1 (3-4 minutes) • to prepare Ss for speaking part and correct if there is any misunderstanding.

If there is enough time do both LF 2 and LF 3. If not, continue with LF 2 as it is continuation of theme of generalising. Put Ss in pairs and ask them to insert the missing word in each sentence. Take some FB.

Speaking (8-10 minutes) • to get Ss to pratise what they have learnt and increase their general speaking fluency

Put Ss in pairs and Ask students to look at the sentences in LF ex 1. Discuss how much you agree with them.Try to bring in other general examples to support your point. Ss' partners should think of exceptions.

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