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English in Videos Name: _____________________________________________________________________________ Teacher: _________________________ Level: _________________ Date: ____/ ____ / _____

Blackout
Friends Season 1 Disc 2

1. What were they doing when the lights went out?

Ross (R)
( ( ( ) ) )

Phoebe
play the guitar work watch a concert

Chandler

Joey
( (

Monica
) )

Rachel

(

)

watch a concert watch a concert leave an ATM

2. Check with your partner. Remember to use “He/She was …ing”. 3. What did they do after the lights went out? ( ( ( ) ) ) go to Monica’s house talk to her mother call her grandma light some Hanukkah candles call Monica and talk to Joey

(
(

)
)

4. Check with your partner. Remember to use the Simple Past. 5. Interview your partner. What were you doing…? when when when Where were you? Who were you with? What did you do after that?

A BLACKOUT Teachers’ Guide Aim: remedial work on the concept of past progressive vs. simple past, practice on those verb tenses orally. 1. Pre-teaching vocabulary: Turn out the lights and elicit/teach the expressions for that when it happens to everyone in a neighborhood or city (the lights went out, there was a blackout). 2. Pre-watching/ Speaking: T-S or in small groups. Hand out the worksheets and ask them to describe the characters in Friends — appearance and personality — not only to practice description, but also to help students who are not familiar with the sitcom. 3. Pre-watching/ Predicting/ Vocabulary: PW. Have them negotiate what the characters might have done before and after the blackout. 4. While watching: Play the video snippet. Have them check their predictions, at the same time that they should relate the places and activities to the characters. In pairs, students check their answers to the exercise. 5. Concept work: Elicit the answers and work on the concept that simple past+simple past indicates that one action happened after the other, while past progressive + simple past shows that one action interrupted the order. Have them make a few sentences orally as examples and write yourself a pair on the board (E.g.: Phoebe was playing a song when the lights went out. Phoebe went to Monica’s apartment and called her grandmother when the lights went out.) 6. Controlled practice/ Speaking or Writing: Have them go over the activities making sentences orally or in writing. 7. OPTIONAL: Controlled Practice/ Speaking: If you teach at Cultura Inglesa Rio, Use Action 3> MM/RP to elicit the forms “They were doing x, when the lights went out.” Work on the concept (long action vs. short action, action that was interrupted, etc.). After that, have them do a memory test in pairs. 8. Less controlled practice/ Personalization/ Speaking: Elicit events everybody in the classroom remembers: a) the WTC collapsed (if they’re not too young) b) the teacher arrived c) the lights went out (in case there has been a blackout recently); etc. Have students complete the “when” clauses with their choices and then interview one another.

9. Production/ Conversation: (presented by Jack Scholmes) Aim: discuss body language; inhance role-play performance This is actually a task that can be done anytime, especially in lessons in which you’ve discussed body language, but I think you could use it to have them produce the past progressive in a relaxed way. Tell them they can chat! Yes, chat. About anything they want. A childhood memory, a recent event in their lives, a funny story they’ve heard, a gossip about a celebrity… ANYTHING. The only restrictions: they will talk for 3 minutes and in English — and it should be something they’d really like to talk about. But first elicit in what ways people react when the other is talking. If you have a video snippet of people talking and one keeping quiet, bring it to class. People nod, look eye to eye, turn their body to and towards the person, smile, say “really?”, “yeah”, “hum-hum”, “I see”, “I know what you mean” and etc. Write those on the board. Have them practice saying and doing those things for fun. Now let the chatting part start. They’ll talk in pairs — even better if they do it standing —, but the partner will keep quiet while the other is talking — all the partner is allowed to say and do are the sentences you’ve written on the board. Give them their 3 minutes and ask for feedback, how the talking partners felt and whether the silent partners remember the story well. (Obs.: If they choose to tell a story, it’s likely they’ll need the past progressive and you should monitor lightly to check if they’re already producing it in storytelling or not. You can write down their sentences and elicit correction later.) Now have the silent partners leave the room, knowing they will soon be the talking partners, so they should think of the story they will tell. When there are only formerly talking partners in the room, elicit what people do when they’re NOT interested in what the other is saying (look away, use those expressions ironically, get easily distracted, step back, etc.). The ex-talking partners will have a difficult task: half of them will be told to act as if they are not interested, while the other half will act as if they were interested. The formerly silent partners now come back to class to tell their stories for 3 minutes non-stop (they should be paired up with the same partner they had before). Elicit feedback: how did they feel? Did some of them get angry with their partners? After all, they paid attention and all when it was their turn to be quiet, so why are their partners ignoring them? Did they feel any different from the ones with receptive listeners? And who remembered the story better: the receptive or the distracted ones? Why? (He was looking the other way while I was talking, etc.) This will give a chance for them to reflect upon the importance of body language, and hopefully improve their performances in role-plays. If the distracted ones had trouble in remembering the stories, you can use that to foster a debate on what would be a good way to behave in class so that they learn (sitting straight, turning to the person who’s speaking — be it their teacher or partner, etc.).

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