Life into language lessons

by Zhenya

This is my reflection, or even self-talk, about one workshop handout. In fact, it was created three years ago and never used with teachers; I kept thinking about those questions both with my ‘teacher’ hat on, and also from a trainer point of view. I am wondering if a discussion like this is still a good idea now, at the very end of 2013, era if gadgets and smart phones? Is our classroom actually a place where people can simple take a break from real life and simply talk to each other?


First, read through the questions of the Find Someone Who handout and think about your own lessons last week? Last month? What are your own answers?

Now, do the Find Someone Who task and take notes on some interesting answers from your colleagues (especially those that are different from yours!)

Find Someone Who used … in class last week / month

Resource / material


More information

1) realia (objects you brought from home, or borrowed, or found in the teachers’ room)
2) authentic audio/video materials
3) authentic reading materials (a leaflet, a ticket, a tea bag, a clothing label, etc.)
4) unrehearsed recordings (self-made recording yourself or a colleague / friend)
5) a quotation from a book you have been reading
6) an impression from a movie / theatre show you saw
7) personal (your family?) pictures
8) pictures of the places you have been to
9) TV programs (live)
10) social media
11) a song
12) a part (episode) of a movie
13) (add your own idea)….

Some questions to think about:

  • What else can ‘bring life’ into your lessons? Why is this important? How does it help students’ learning?
  • Hans Christian Andersen could write a story out of nothing – for example, about an empty plastic bag, etc. Can this be applied to lessons? Why (not)?
  • In modern days, is it possible to teach English (or any other language) just using a course book? Why, or why not?