Classroom - instrukcja dla prowadzących - POLITICS AND CURRENT AFFAIRS / WAR AND CONFLICT

From Studia Informatyczne

Spis treści

Activity 1 – Warm-up (ca. 5 minutes)

Put the students into pairs or groups of three, and ask them to briefly discuss the current political situation (Polish or international). Tell them to think about ongoing conflicts, the threat of terrorist attacks, and local or national political situations (e.g. elections, government decisions, personal changes etc.). As this is a typical ice breaker, the students don’t have to reach any conclusions (they just exchange their ideas and activate language use).


Hint: Remind the students of the language of politics (metaphors, strong verbs etc.). Suggest that they can think of the media coverage of certain events, about the headlines or recent speeches made by well-known politicians.


Activity 2 – Speeches (ca. 5-10 minutes)

In lesson 37, the students were asked to write a short speech and to be ready to deliver it orally. This is the right moment to ask a few volunteers to deliver their speeches in class. This would serve several purposes:

  • you can simply check whether the students have done the assignment or not,
  • the students can practise the very important skill of public speaking,
  • the students can practise functional language structures for expressing agreement and disagreement .


Activity 3 – Debate (ca. 15- 25 minutes)

Tell the students they are going to hold a debate on the topic of Poland’s membership in the European Union (the topic and the relevant vocabulary should be familiar to the students as they should have written an essay on such a topic). Ask the students if they are generally happy or not that Poland is a member of the EU. If there are too few students critical of the EU (which probably will be the case), simply divide the class in two, and tell half the class that they are EU enthusiasts (group A), and the other half that they are EU sceptics (group B).
Now the students within each group should get in pairs. Give them three minutes to list the relevant arguments (for or against the EU), possibly illustrated with examples. After three minutes, put each A pair with one B pair (to form groups of 4), and ask them to try to convince their colleagues of their views.
After a few minutes, put two A pairs with two B pairs (to form a group of eight) and ask them to continue the discussion (in a larger group, new arguments should come up).
Finally, open up the whole class debate (all A and B students will have a chance to hear the arguments of each side).
Such pyramidal discussion should give all the students a chance to speak.


Hint: During the whole activity monitor, help students with the vocabulary, and note any errors and difficulties for a correction session at the end of the activity.


Activity 4 – Role-play (ca. 15-25 minutes)

To practise military vocabulary, the students will role-play recruitment into the armed forces. Put the students into groups of 5. In each group, 2 students will be recruitment officers and 3 students will want to enlist to join the army. Give the students role cards, but, at the same time, encourage them to enrich their identities.
Candidates should be interviewed by the recruitment officers one by one. After the 3 interviews, the officers should decide which of the 3 candidates will be enlisted (there is only one vacancy!).


Recruitment officer 1: You have served in the army for 30 years and you are an army enthusiast. You believe it’s a perfect career for everyone. You don’t think there are any serious difficulties, and you always make them look smaller and less important than they really are. You are very friendly and encouraging to all the prospective candidates, even if they seem unfit for military service.
Ask the candidates about their interests, abilities (or any weak points) and expectations.


Recruitment officer 2: You have served in the army for 20 years, and you feel resigned and depressed. You have participated both in defensive and offensive combat situations, and you know that serving in the army s is a very difficult career (think of particular examples!). You also think you haven’t been promoted enough. You try to discourage all the prospective candidates, even if they seem particularly well-suited for military service.
Ask the candidates about their interests, abilities (or any weak points) and expectations.


Candidate 1: You have dreamed of a career in the army since you were 10-years-old. You’ve seen almost all the war movies, and you’ve read dozens of books about war and combat. You know everything about weapons and strategies. You are also up-to-date on the topic of international conflicts. However, you adapt to new conditions with difficulty. You like to sleep in your own bed and to get your favourite meals on time.
Ask the officers about the requirements, difficulties and chances of advancement.


Candidate 2: You have come to enlist, because your parents wanted you to do it (they think it’s a perfect career for you and you just don’t care). At school, you were a poor student as far as academic subjects were concerned, but you always excelled in sports. You are very fit and healthy, and you are not afraid of any risk or discomfort.
Ask the officers about the requirements, difficulties and chances of advancement.


Candidate 3: In fact, you are not sure what you want to do in life. You are quite smart (in school, you always got good grades), you like to exercise (you can swim very well, and go to the gym twice a week). You don’t quite like regular routines (you like to eat or sleep at different times). You’d like to make good money and you like to get praised if you do something well.
Ask the officers about the requirements, difficulties and chances of advancement.


Note:

For your lesson, you may choose one of the activities 3 or 4 – in which case make it longer (ca. 25 minutes). Make sure the students don’t get bored or switch to Polish which would be counter-productive . However, you may try to run both activities – in which case make them shorter (ca. 15 minutes each). This would enable the students to practise more vocabulary. Base your choice of activity on your students’ needs (e.g. whether they need any further grammar explanations) and the size of the group (in small groups, there is probably less need for pyramidal discussion which would save a lot of time). Make sure some conclusions are drawn at the end of the debate/role-play.