This time we give you a worksheet about self-improvement and coaching based on a speech by Svend Brinkmann called “Resisting the Self-Improvement Craze”. The lesson is heavily focused on speaking and teaches fixed phrases connected with personal development. I’ve selected this video for two main reasons:
- it talks about an interesting topic and shows a unique viewpoint
- the speaker is a ‘non-native’ speaker (Danish) so the video introduces a different accent than a standard British/American English and shows students how diverse English is. After all, most probably your students will use English to communicate with other people whose mother tongue is not English.
WARM-UP AND VOCAB
The warm-up part introduces the topic and lets students say what their experiences with coaching are and what they know about this topic. The next stage is vocabulary. There, students discover fixed phrases related to personal development (e.g. step out of the comfort zone, aim for sth, hone your skills). After learning new expressions, students have an opportunity to discuss statements (with those phrases) and use them to collaborate and decide which sentences are most/least interesting.
VIDEO AND DISCUSSION
The lesson continues with the video part. First, students read an introduction to the video to learn and discuss what it is about. Next, they watch the video and need to answer closed comprehension questions (Yes/No/Don’t Know). The key point of the lesson is a discussion after the video. The speaker in the video criticizes the self-improvement culture. Students, then, will be able to compare his opinion with their own views on coaching and personal development. In my experience, it results in a heated and engaging debate as many people are either very open to coaching or totally against it.
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