This ESL lesson plan is based on the video from Bloomberg titled “Will the Baby Boomers Ever Retire?”. It concerns a significant issue of the retirement of baby boomers, that is a generation born between 1946 and 1964. The lesson itself involves a discussion on retirement and pension as well as a grammar point, i.e. verb patterns exercises.
Baby boomers might not be a familiar term for all of your students so start the lesson by eliciting names of different generations and trying to define what their birth years / their differences are. The worksheet starts with an exercise which includes such words and phrases as savings, afford, birth rate, etc. Students need to match questions with answers – it should help them to understand the meanings of the words and phrases. This prepares them for next exercises as all the vocabulary comes from the Bloomberg’s video. Then, they answer the same questions expressing their own ideas. Next, they watch the video and decide, based on what they hear, whether the given sentences are true or false. They should correct sentences which are false. After checking their answers, you may want to have a quick discussion about the issues from the video as a post-watching task; however, do not go into the topic of retirement age to deeply (see Debate Time).
Grammar point – verb patterns
The next part of the lesson plan is on grammar. It starts with a verb patterns exercise in which students have to group verbs which are followed by gerunds or infinitives. Before doing this task, it is advised to elicit some sample sentences. Go for the most commonly used verbs such as like, want or finish. Check this task with the whole class so that you are sure that all students have categorized verbs correctly. In order to practise them, students move to the second verb patterns exercise. They need to finish some sentences with their own ideas, remembering to use correct verb patterns. If you want, you can use this task for oral practice too, e.g. make students compare their sentences and ask each other follow-up questions, e.g. Why are you frustrated when your co-workers fail to meet deadlines?
The last activity is a debate which can be done in pairs or groups. The topic is “The retirement age should be raised”. First, encourage your students to collect some arguments for and against the statement. You can help them by eliciting or providing some ideas that you can find on such websites as Debatewise.org or Debate.org. These websites are perfect for getting some inspirations for your lesson debates.
|Retirement language + verb patterns|
|Listening comprehension: true or false|
|Debate: retirement age|
If you liked this lesson plan and want to explore similar worksheets, see all of our Global Issues lesson plans.