Tag Archives: mind mapping

Lesson Plan: Cities,Towns and Villages

This is a lesson for Intermediate students (B1).

Hopefully, at the end of this lesson you’ll have learnt useful vocabulary to talk about a city/town/ village you like, you’ll be able to talk about the advantages and disadvantages of living in the city or the countryside and you’ll be able to understand people talking about it.

What’s your hometown like?
Are you happy with the city/town/village you live in? What are some of the pros and cons?
What are the advantages and disadvantages of living in the coutryside or in a town

These are some common questions  in oral exams. Before reading any further, think about how you coud best answer these questions. Try really hard. Imagine you’re taking the real test.

Ok! Now!!! Do you have all the words you need or, are there things you couldn’t say because you didn’t have the right words? If this is the case, then go on reading, this post is for you.

Below you’ll find some ideas to help you get started.

Mapa Mental creado con ExamTime por cristina.cabal


Now, watch these two short videos and answer the questions below. The first one is about the advantages and disadvantages of living in a big city and the second about the advantages and disadvantages of living in a small town ( could also be applied to living in the countryside)

Video 1. Advantages and disadvantages of living in a big city

Speaker 1. What’s the disadvantage he mentions?

Speaker 2. What are the disadvantages he mentions?

Speaker 3. What is, in his opinion, the main advantage? What two disadvantages does he mention?

Speaker 4. What’s the huge advantage cities have compared to rural areas?

Speaker 5.  What’s, according to this speaker, the main advantage?

Answers here

Video 2. Advantages and disadvantages of living in a small town (could be applied to the countryside)

Speaker 1. What’s the advantage and the disadvantage he mentions?

Speaker 2. What does he say about the pace of life in small towns?

Speaker 3. What’s the advantage and the disadvantage he mentions?

Speaker 4. For him, what’s the advantage and the disadvantage  of living in a small town?

Speaker 5. What does he say happens in small towns?

 Answers here

♥By the way, do you know the difference between a city and a town???

A city is larger than a town and it has a cathedral 🙂 , at least in the UK

Now, do you think you can describe your hometown? Can you talk about your favourite city? Can you talk about the advantages and disadvantages of living in a city or in the countryside? Hope you can!


Making Suggestions

Once again I have used some online free tools to spice up my lessons; believe me, something vey much needed at this time of year when students, and shall I say teachers too? begin to feel the necessity of giving English a break. Good weather and a sun-oriented classroom doesn’t help much either.
So this time the structures I need to teach are those to Make Suggestions. Very useful structures to learn, don’t you agree?

To revise the structures I have worked with  a tool I have  already used several times. I like it and I highly recommended.It’s called Goconqr
por cristina.cabal

Fancy a bit of practice?

Lesson Plan: Talking about Your Hometown .

This is a lesson for Elementary students.

Step 1. Reading and Listening

Mind mapping is a very important  learning tool for visual learners. This mind map has been created with Exam Time, which is very easy to use and  embeddable, a feature I always appreciate.

There are some steps previous to this mind mapping  we wrote on the board, essentially reading and listening about this issue. Form these listenings and readings we gathered and sorted vocabulary that was, then, written on the board.

Step 2. Mind Mapping

What you see below is a nice way of displaying what was written on the board of the classroom  with the help of my students.

por cristina.cabal
Step 3. Speaking

For this activity, instead of the typical photocopy with the list of questions to talk about, I have put students in groups of three or four and given each group a set of cards, which they had to place face down on the table. Students in turns pick up a card and talk for as much as they can about the given question. At this point I give my students the usual talk about how important it is now, to “show off.”

This is a snapshot of the cards. Click here if you want to print them.

Lesson Plan: Films

Mixing traditional and modern teaching? What’s the right balance? That’s a hot issue and one I haven’t yet found the answer to but I feel that there’s nothing like the interaction between teachers and students or students among themselves.
In this lesson plan Focus on Films I’ve combined both traditional teaching and new technologies. I’ve even published one exercise Film Genres that I’d rather do with my students in class with them taking an active role in their learning process. You choose but what comes below  is how I  definitely plan to do it with my students.

I ‘ve prepared one set of blue strips of paper with the names of famous films and another set of green coloured strips with film genres. All in all I’ve written 10 strips of paper and then placed them on my table. Students will then come up to my table and do the matching exercise using blue-tack to stick the strips on the blackboard. I’m planning to revise  by showing them only the films and then only the genres.

On the other hand, there is another exercise in this lesson plan where, if I were a student, I’d definitely choose to do using a computer and I’m referring to the brainstorming exercise we normally do on the blackboard. Well,  I’ve had a lot of fun ( and also wasted a lot of time ) doing this brainstorming  about films with this little application called Simple Diagrams, which I highly recommend (mainly because it’s free)

It must have been sheer luck that I bumped into this cool site only last week, just when I was gathering material to use  in the FILMS lesson.

This site has been nominated as one of the 50 best sites in 2010 and it contains about 12.000 film snippets that can be searched by genre, director, props, setting…etc. Isn’t it just unbelievable that you can even choose Action  and under this category choose whether you want a clip with a cough or a bump or a cry? Isn’t it just as amazing that you can choose the clip by Mood; do you want something inspiring,creepy or maybe funny?

The whole lesson, designed for intermediate students, comes with Vocabulary, Reading, Listening and Writing exercises. Click HERE to do it