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ESL / EFL Lesson Plan on Susan Boyle - by Sean Banville

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December 27, 2009

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Susan Boyle to Star in Japanese Show

Scottish singing sensation Susan Boyle will appear on a popular Japanese TV show on New Year’s Eve. This is set to boost her popularity in the Far East. The singer is set to sing on the traditional singing competition ‘Kohaku Uta Gassen’. This yearly contest divides popular singers into teams of men and women. It is the most popular New Year programme on TV and is watched by millions. It is unusual for non-Japanese artists to perform. A news source said: "Susan has been practicing a Japanese folk song called ‘Wings To Fly’, which she is hoping to perform live for the first time.” The tune was a bonus track on the Japanese version of her debut album ‘I Dreamed A Dream’. The album reached number one in Japan’s music charts.


Susan Boyle shot to fame after appearing on a British show called ‘Britain’s Got Talent’. She sang ‘I Dreamed A Dream’ from the musical ‘Les Miserables’. The YouTube video of her performance became the most watched video of 2009. She released her first CD in November 2009 and it quickly topped the album charts in many countries around the world. In Britain, it is outselling albums by Lady Gaga and Kings of Leon. Ms Boyle said she was amazed by its success: "The album being so well received is humbling and I'm so grateful. It's been an absolutely brilliant year and I can't thank everyone enough for the support I've been given." Susan has not let the success go to her head. She still lives in the family home in Scotland she has lived in for decades.


 
 

WARM-UPS

1. SUSAN BOYLE: Walk around the class and talk to other students about Susan Boyle. Change partners often. Sit with your first partner(s) and share your findings.

2. CHAT: In pairs / groups, decide which of these topics or words from the article are most interesting and which are most boring.

 

singing / New Year / TV shows / Far East / singing competitions / folk songs / debuts / fame / musicals / YouTube / being amazed / success / brilliant years / family home

Have a chat about the topics you liked. Change topics and partners frequently.

3. BRILLIANT YEAR: How was 2009 for you? Complete this table. Talk about what you wrote with your partner(s). Change partners and share what you heard.

 

The Highs

The Lows

My English

 

 

My computer

 

 

Relationships

 

 

Money

 

 

A hobby

 

 

My family

 

 

4. 2010: Students A strongly believe 2010 will be the best year ever; Students B strongly believe 2010 will be the worst year ever.  Change partners again and talk about your conversations.

5. DREAM A DREAM: What would you dream for? Talk about these things with your partner(s). Change partners and share what you heard.

  • yourself
  • your best friend
  • your country
  • the world
  • food
  • technology
  • English
  • music

6. JAPAN: Spend one minute writing down all of the different words you associate with the word ‘Japan’. Share your words with your partner(s) and talk about them. Together, put the words into different categories.


 
 

BEFORE READING / LISTENING

1. TRUE / FALSE: Read the headline. Guess if  a-h  below are true (T) or false (F).

a.

A Scottish singer will sing on a Japanese New Year singing show.

T / F

b.

The show is on Japanese TV once a decade, when the year ends in 10.

T / F

c.

The show is a singing competition between men and women.

T / F

d.

The Scottish singer will sing a traditional folk song from Scotland.

T / F

e.

Susan Boyle appeared in the hit musical ‘Les Miserables’.

T / F

f.

A Susan Boyle song was the most watched YouTube video of 2009.

T / F

g.

Susan Boyle can’t quite believe how successful she has been this year.

T / F

h.

Susan Boyle is very rich but still lives in her family home in Scotland.

T / F

2. SYNONYM MATCH: Match the following synonyms from the article.

1.

sensation

a.

appear

2

boost

b.

backing

3.

perform

c.

premiere

4.

bonus

d.

headed

5.

debut

e.

phenomenon

6.

shot

f.

stunned

7.

topped

g.

extra

8.

amazed

h.

rose

9.

absolutely

i.

increase

10.

support

j.

totally

3. PHRASE MATCH:  (Sometimes more than one choice is possible.)

1.

singing

a.

live

2

boost

b.

number one

3.

perform

c.

to fame

4.

the Japanese version of her

d.

by its success

5.

The album reached

e.

her popularity

6.

Susan Boyle shot

f.

everyone enough

7.

the most watched

g.

go to her head

8.

she was amazed

h.

sensation

9.

I can't thank

i.

debut album

10.

let the success

j.

video of 2009

WHILE READING / LISTENING

GAP FILL: Put the words into the gaps in the text.

Scottish singing sensation Susan Boyle will ____________ on a popular Japanese TV show on New Year’s Eve. This is set to ____________ her popularity in the Far East. The singer is set to sing on the traditional singing competition ‘Kohaku Uta Gassen’. This ____________ contest divides popular singers into teams of men and women. It is the most ____________ New Year programme on TV and is watched by millions. It is ____________ for non-Japanese artists to perform. A news source said: "Susan has been practicing a Japanese folk song called ‘Wings To Fly’, which she is hoping to perform ____________ for the first time.” The tune was a ____________ track on the Japanese version of her debut album ‘I Dreamed A Dream’. The album ____________ number one in Japan’s music charts.

 

 

 

bonus
boost
unusual
reached
appear
popular
live
yearly

Susan Boyle ____________ to fame after appearing on a British show called ‘Britain’s Got Talent’. She sang ‘I Dreamed A Dream’ from the musical ‘Les Miserables’. The YouTube ____________ of her performance became the most watched video of 2009. She released her first CD in November 2009 and it quickly ____________ the album charts in many countries around the world. In Britain, it is outselling albums by Lady Gaga and Kings of Leon. Ms Boyle said she was ____________ by its success: "The album being so well received is humbling and I'm so ____________. It's been an ____________ brilliant year and I can't thank everyone enough for the ____________ I've been given." Susan has not let the success go to her head. She still lives in the family home in Scotland she has lived in for ____________.

 

 

grateful
topped
support
video
decades
shot
amazed
absolutely

LISTENING – Listen and fill in the gaps

Scottish singing sensation Susan Boyle will __________________ Japanese TV show on New Year’s Eve. This is __________________ popularity in the Far East. The singer is set to sing on the traditional singing competition ‘Kohaku Uta Gassen’. This __________________ popular singers into teams of men and women. It is the most popular New Year programme on TV and is ____________________. It is unusual for non-Japanese artists to perform. A news source said: "Susan has been practicing a Japanese folk song called ‘Wings To Fly’, which she is hoping __________________ for the first time.” The tune was a bonus track on the Japanese version of her debut album ‘I Dreamed A Dream’. The album __________________ in Japan’s music charts.

Susan Boyle ___________________ appearing on a British show called ‘Britain’s Got Talent’. She sang ‘I Dreamed A Dream’ from the musical ‘Les Miserables’. The YouTube video of her performance became the __________________ of 2009. She released her first CD in November 2009 and it __________________ album charts in many countries around the world. In Britain, it is outselling albums by Lady Gaga and Kings of Leon. Ms Boyle said she __________________ success: "The album being so well received is humbling and I'm so grateful. It's been an absolutely brilliant year and I can't thank everyone enough for the support I've been given." Susan has not let the success __________________. She still lives in the family home in Scotland she has __________________.


 
 

AFTER READING / LISTENING

1. WORD SEARCH: Look in your dictionary / computer to find collocates, other meanings, information, synonyms … for the words ‘talent’ and ‘show’.

talent

show

 

 

 

  • Share your findings with your partners.
  • Make questions using the words you found.
  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

2. ARTICLE QUESTIONS: Look back at the article and write down some questions you would like to ask the class about the text.

  • Share your questions with other classmates / groups.
  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

3. GAP FILL: In pairs / groups, compare your answers to this exercise. Check your answers. Talk about the words from the activity. Were they new, interesting, worth learning…?

4. VOCABULARY: Circle any words you do not understand. In groups, pool unknown words and use dictionaries to find their meanings.

5. TEST EACH OTHER: Look at the words below. With your partner, try to recall how they were used in the text:

  • popular
  • boost
  • divides
  • unusual
  • source
  • debut
  • shot
  • watched
  • topped
  • amazed
  • absolutely
  • success

STUDENT SUSAN BOYLE SURVEY

Write five GOOD questions about Susan Boyle in the table. Do this in pairs. Each student must write the questions on his / her own paper.

When you have finished, interview other students. Write down their answers.

 

STUDENT 1

_____________

STUDENT 2

_____________

STUDENT 3

_____________

Q.1.

 

 

 

 

Q.2.

 

 

 

 

Q.3.

 

 

 

 

Q.4.

 

 

 

 

Q.5.

 

 

 

 

  • Now return to your original partner and share and talk about what you found out. Change partners often.
  • Make mini-presentations to other groups on your findings.

SUSAN BOYLE / 2010 DISCUSSION

STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

a)

What did you think when you read the headline?

b)

What springs to mind when you hear the word ‘success’?

c)

What do you think / know about Susan Boyle?

d)

What do you usually do on New Year’s Eve?

e)

What kind of shows are there on TV in your country?

f)

Do you like looking at singing shows on TV?

g)

What was the last album you bought and what did you think of it?

h)

What dream do you want to dream?

i)

Who is your favourite singer and why do you like him/her?

j)

Have you ever sung in a singing show?

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

a)

Did you like reading this article?

b)

Would you like to meet Susan Boyle?

c)

Would you like to appear on a talent show if it meant you could achieve overnight success?

d)

What YouTube videos do you like watching?

e)

What’s the biggest success you’ve had in your life?

f)

What kind of year have you had?

g)

When have you been really, really thankful to someone?

h)

What are your predictions for 2010?

i)

Do you think fame and success would change you or go to your head?

j)

What questions would you like to ask Susan Boyle?

LANGUAGE – MULTIPLE CHOICE

Scottish singing (1) ____ Susan Boyle will appear on a popular Japanese TV show on New Year’s Eve. This is set to (2) ____ her popularity in the Far East. The singer is set to sing on the traditional singing competition ‘Kohaku Uta Gassen’. This yearly contest (3) ____ popular singers into teams of men and women. It is the most popular New Year programme on TV and is watched by millions. It is unusual (4) ____ non-Japanese artists to perform. A news source said: "Susan has been practicing a Japanese folk song called ‘Wings To Fly’, which she is hoping to perform (5) ____ for the first time.” The tune was a bonus track on the Japanese version of her debut album ‘I Dreamed A Dream’. The album (6) ____ number one in Japan’s music charts.

Susan Boyle (7) ____ to fame after appearing on a British show called ‘Britain’s Got Talent’. She sang ‘I Dreamed A Dream’ from the musical ‘Les Miserables’. The YouTube video of her performance became the most (8) ____ video of 2009. She released her first CD in November 2009 and it quickly topped the album charts in many countries around the world. In Britain, it is (9) ____ albums by Lady Gaga and Kings of Leon. Ms Boyle said she was amazed (10) ____ its success: "The album being so well received is humbling and I'm so grateful. It's been an absolutely brilliant year and I can't (11) ____ everyone enough for the support I've been given." Susan has not let the success (12) ____ to her head. She still lives in the family home in Scotland she has lived in for decades.

Put the correct words from the table below in the above article.

1.

(a)

sensational

(b)

sensationalize

(c)

sensations

(d)

sensation

2.

(a)

beast

(b)

baste

(c)

boost

(d)

boots

3.

(a)

dividing

(b)

divides

(c)

divide

(d)

division

4.

(a)

for

(b)

by

(c)

at

(d)

from

5.

(a)

life

(b)

alive

(c)

live

(d)

living

6.

(a)

reaches

(b)

reaching

(c)

reach

(d)

reached

7.

(a)

shop

(b)

shot

(c)

shod

(d)

show

8.

(a)

watched

(b)

looked

(c)

seen

(d)

viewing

9.

(a)

outstretching

(b)

outselling

(c)

outsourcing

(d)

outing

10.

(a)

to

(b)

for

(c)

by

(d)

on

11.

(a)

thank

(b)

thank you

(c)

thankful

(d)

thanks

12.

(a)

fall

(b)

drop

(c)

visit

(d)

go

WRITING

Write about Susan Boyle for 10 minutes. Correct your partner’s paper.

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

HOMEWORK

1. VOCABULARY EXTENSION: Choose several of the words from the text. Use a dictionary or Google’s search field (or another search engine) to build up more associations / collocations of each word.

2. INTERNET: Search the Internet and find out more about Susan Boyle. Share what you discover with your partner(s) in the next lesson.

3. SUSAN BOYLE: Make a poster about Susan Boyle. Show your work to your classmates in the next lesson. Did you all have similar things?

4. 2010: Write a magazine article about 2010. Include imaginary interviews with someone from today and someone from the year 2011.

Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Write down any new words and expressions you hear from your partner(s).

5. LETTER: Write a letter to Susan Boyle. Ask her three questions about her life. Give her three pieces of advice on what she should do in 2010. Read your letter to your partner(s) in your next lesson. Your partner(s) will answer your questions.

ANSWERS

TRUE / FALSE:

a.

T

b.

F

c.

T

d.

F

e.

F

f.

T

g.

T

h.

T

SYNONYM MATCH:

1.

sensation

a.

phenomenon

2

boost

b.

increase

3.

perform

c.

appear

4.

bonus

d.

extra

5.

debut

e.

premiere

6.

shot

f.

rose

7.

topped

g.

headed

8.

amazed

h.

stunned

9.

absolutely

i.

totally

10.

support

j.

backing

PHRASE MATCH:

1.

singing

a.

sensation

2

boost

b.

her popularity

3.

perform

c.

live

4.

the Japanese version of her

d.

debut album

5.

The album reached

e.

number one

6.

Susan Boyle shot

f.

to fame

7.

the most watched

g.

video of 2009

8.

she was amazed

h.

by its success

9.

I can't thank

i.

everyone enough

10.

let the success

j.

go to her head

GAP FILL:

Susan Boyle to star in Japanese show

Scottish singing sensation Susan Boyle will appear on a popular Japanese TV show on New Year’s Eve. This is set to boost her popularity in the Far East. The singer is set to sing on the traditional singing competition ‘Kohaku Uta Gassen’. This yearly contest divides popular singers into teams of men and women. It is the most popular New Year programme on TV and is watched by millions. It is unusual for non-Japanese artists to perform. A news source said: "Susan has been practicing a Japanese folk song called ‘Wings To Fly’, which she is hoping to perform live for the first time.” The tune was a bonus track on the Japanese version of her debut album ‘I Dreamed A Dream’. The album reached number one in Japan’s music charts.

Susan Boyle shot to fame after appearing on a British show called ‘Britain’s Got Talent’. She sang ‘I Dreamed A Dream’ from the musical ‘Les Miserables’. The YouTube video of her performance became the most watched video of 2009. She released her first CD in November 2009 and it quickly topped the album charts in many countries around the world. In Britain, it is outselling albums by Lady Gaga and Kings of Leon. Ms Boyle said she was amazed by its success: "The album being so well received is humbling and I'm so grateful. It's been an absolutely brilliant year and I can't thank everyone enough for the support I've been given." Susan has not let the success go to her head. She still lives in the family home in Scotland she has lived in for decades.

LANGUAGE WORK

1 - d

2 - c

3 - b

4 - a

5 - c

6 - d

7 - b

8 - a

9 - b

10 - c

11 - a

12 - d

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