Sky News (YouTube Channel), “Inside The $5bn Industry Of Child Beauty Pageants”

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The Video

Sky News reports on the growing industry of childhood beauty pageants. The controversy surrounding this often bizarre world is explored and questions connected with future body issues are raised by an expert.

This issue is bound to provoke a reaction from your class, but be careful with cultural sensitivities. The child and mother featured in the film are a full realization of the Honey Boo Boo stereotype and provide the all the drama you’d imagine.

Language Focus and Level

As a news story, the voice over to this video is an easily-understood gateway for intermediate level and above. Shari, the mother in this feature, has a thick Texas accent which could provide a challenge for more advanced students.

There is a large second conditional grammar section in the worksheet (below), which is ideally aimed at upper intermediate but could be used for high intermediate. Zero and first conditional are briefly covered but essentially the main content surrounds hypothetical situations and the extension activity requires the use of this grammar. 

The worksheet also includes small sections on the grammar connected with the verbs of the senses (she looks good, she looks like an adult…etc.) and the vocabulary used in the video.

Worksheet

thumb   Download the worksheet here: Sky News

Availability

Find the video over at YouTube.

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ODN (YouTube Channel), “How the UK Public Really Felt About Brexit”

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The Video

This video captures the reactions of the British public in the wake of the decision to leave the EU. With a mix of elation and despair, the video shows the full spectrum of emotion in the air in the UK at the moment. Still in a state of shock and uncertainty, the only definite thing we can be sure of at the moment is that the United Kingdom is far from being “united”.

Level and Language Focus

The video features many different speakers; some easy to understand, some difficult. They are all however native speakers and the video wouldn’t be recommendable to any levels lower than upper intermediate.

Many of the adjectives used to describe how people are feeling; disappointed, worried etc. use the -ed ending, and the difference between -ed/-ing adjective endings is explained in the worksheet below with activities.

The worksheet also features role cards so you can hold your own class debate on the subject. 

Worksheet

thumb Download the worksheet here: Brexit Handout (Right Click, Save As…)

Availability

Watch the video on YouTube.

The Wright Stuff (Channel 5, UK) – Alternative Lifestyles

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The Clip

This is a UK morning debate programme in which “celebrity” guests, audience members and viewers discuss stories from the day’s news. This specific item concerns a city banker who gave up his London flat to live in the woods for a year. Starting with a short interview, the piece goes on to include opinions from the celebrity panel and viewers via the phone.

Level and Language Focus

The clip is good for learners as they have to listen to the studio interview, which is fairly easy to understand but then have the challenge of the phone callers, which is great practice for those who use the phone a lot in English.

With the vocabulary help provided by the worksheet below, the video could be used in an Upper Intermediate class, Pre-Advanced and Advanced level classes should also find the video stimulating with “part 2” proving particularly challenging.

Worksheet

A worksheet featuring some of the difficult vocabulary is available here: Alternative Lifestyles (Right click, Save Target As…)

A follow up activity to practice tenses is also available here: Alternative Lifestyle Role Card (Right click, Save Target As…)

Availability

The clip can be viewed on YouTube, part 1 and part 2.