Tackling the world’s most pervasive issues

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Speaking - group activity

lesson plan on global problems


With this lesson plan on global problems students will learn some advanced language (adjectives and verbs) to talk about the world’s issues. They’ll also watch a video about reducing food insecurity and discuss solutions to the world’s most pressing problems.

C2 / Proficiency90 minStandard LessonPremium Plan


The warm-up activity starts with five questions about the world’s problems with five highlighted adjectives, which students need to match to  correct meanings (e.g. urgent – pressing, never-ending – chronic). Then, they focus on a list of the world’s most pressing issues and decide which two are the most dire and the most pervasive, justifying their opinions and adding more issues to the list. The following task presents a set of six gapped sentences describing global problems which need to be completed with six verbs (e.g. eradicate, plague). Students then put the new language into practice through a discussion in which they relate the world problems to their own countries.  


Before students watch a video about an innovative idea deployed in several US cities, they look at a related slogan and try to guess what the idea might be about. Then, they watch the video and focus on finding the answers to five specific questions. The listening practice is followed by a vocabulary exercise in which students analyse five extracts from the video and explain the meaning of the words and phrases in bold. Then, students exchange their views on the idea presented in the video. In the final stage of this lesson on global problems, the definition of ‘multi-stakeholder partnerships’ is introduced and students speculate about their role in tackling the world’s problems in the future. Working in groups, students choose one of the objectives from the list of issues presented earlier and discuss how a multi-stakeholder partnership could approach it. Using a set of questions as a guide, they pitch their ideas to other groups.



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Leave a Reply

  1. Audrey S

    Wow! Nice one. Great for my proficiency student.

    1. Ewa

      Hope they enjoy it 🙂

  2. Lydia goold verschoyle

    Delighted to see this lesson with some truly relevant and high frequency use, vocabulary. I will use it today on one of my ‘super-duper’ students.
    I have a query. Item No. 4. Is the past tense of ‘shine’ not ‘shone’?
    “Which of the issues has the pandemic shined a spotlight on?” Thank you!

    1. Dragica Zdraveska

      good point this! i noticed it too:)

    2. Ewa

      ‘Shined’ and ‘shone’ are both past forms of ‘shine’.
      I hope your student enjoys the lesson 🙂

      1. Lydia goold verschoyle

        I did a little research that makes sense… “use the traditional rule of using shined with an object and shone without an object unless you have a good reason to deviate.”
        eg. The girl shined her headlights at the abandoned house. (object)
        The light shone brightly. (no object)

        1. Justa

          Hi Lydia! We did some further reseach and it seems that the issue might be more complex and there are also differences between BrE and AmE. Check out these articles as they are really interesting 🙂

    3. Justa

      Exactly, there are two forms and that’s why in ex. 3a) in the Teacher’s Version we provided both options.

  3. oliaznk

    wow I absolutely love this lesson, can’t wait to use it with my high level group! Please make more of these c2 level lessons cause they are absolutely brilliant 🙂

    1. Ewa

      Thank you 🙂 We will do our best 🙂

  4. [email protected]

    Thanks for this. Good vocab, challenging exercises and a great video. Keep up the good work.

    1. Ewa

      Thanks 🙂

  5. smalleyseattle

    A great lesson but there is a typo on slides 8/9, sentence D (I’m not sure if we’ll able to…).
    It should read: I’m not sure if we’ll be able to…
    The word “be” is missing.
    Thanks for all of the great content you create!

    1. Stan

      Thanks for letting us know! Apologies for this typo – we fixed that immediately.

  6. Rebecca Page

    This is a phenomenal topic. Thank you! I love coming to your site and finding exactly what my students need and want in a lesson, especially my advanced adult students. I use your lessons daily!

    1. Ewa

      This is really great to hear 🙂

  7. Christiane IG

    What a great topic! great lesson, engaging and eye-opening!

    1. Ewa

      Thank you 🙂

  8. Marianna_esl

    Excellent worksheet! My students loved it and it inspired so much discussion we even run out of lesson time. So will continue next time. 🙂 Thank you!

    1. Ewa

      Thank you, Marianna. I’m glad your students liked it 🙂

  9. Marianna_esl

    Excellent worksheet. Inspires great discussion. My students loved it. Thank you!

    1. Ewa


  10. AA

    Why are the ‘teacher’s version’ all coming as a pdf now? Is that a new thing you’re doing or a mistake.

    1. Stan

      It’s always been like that. The printable materials are available only in PDFs. If you have them in docs, then I would love to learn where did you get them.

  11. Sofia Valeria Quintana

    Fantastic, thanks!

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