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Price of Gold Hits All-Time High (23rd August, 2011)


 

The price of gold went past the $1,900 per ounce mark for the first time ever on Monday. The record rise is because of growing concerns about a possible recession in the global economy. Two main factors are driving fears of a worldwide economic slowdown – the faltering U.S. economy and the debt crisis in Europe. Investors have traditionally put their money in gold during times of financial uncertainty. They see it as a safe investment. This saw the price of gold rise to $1,913 an ounce in Singapore before settling down to $1,897 an ounce at the close of trading. Industry experts believe gold prices could rise even further as more economic gloom makes investors increasingly nervous.


Analysts say that speculation that the US government may announce new stimulus measures is also increasing the price of gold. America’s Federal Reserve may have to print more money to boost America’s economy, which could see the US currency weaken. A weakened dollar drives up gold prices. Analyst Colin Whitehead explained: "The underlying driver of gold prices is the depreciating US dollar value, so the more money they print, the stronger gold gets." Another economist, Peter Richardson of Morgan Stanley, suggested market factors had little impact on gold. He said: “Gold has continued to blast ahead even with a relatively strengthening U.S. dollar, strongly performing treasuries and other safe havens.”


WARM-UPS

1. GOLD: Walk around the class and talk to other students about gold. 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.

 

the price of gold / growing concerns / recession / financial uncertainty / gloom / speculation / weakened dollar / market factors / depreciating / treasuries / safe haven

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

3. SAFE HAVENS: Where’s safest to leave your money? Complete this table with your partner(s). Change partners and share what you wrote. Change and share again.

 

Pros

Cons

Under the bed

 

 

In gold

 

 

In the bank

 

 

As Japanese Yen

 

 

Wine

 

 

Stocks and shares

 

 

4. DEBT: Students A strongly believe the Euro debt crisis will soon be over; Students B strongly believe it won’t.  Change partners again and talk about your conversations.

5. MONEY: What’s best to do with it? Rank these and share your rankings with your partner. Put the best at the top. Change partners and share your rankings again.

  • invest it in gold
  • keep it under the bed
  • give it to charity
  • spend it all
  • save it for a rainy day
  • just leave it where it is
  • wallpaper your room with it
  • not worry about it

6. RECESSION: Spend one minute writing down all of the different words you associate with the word ‘recession’. 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.

The price of gold almost reached $1,900.

T / F

b.

The record prices are because of the fall in silver prices.

T / F

c.

The price of gold finished at a lower price at the close of trade.

T / F

d.

The article says the economists believe the future will not be rosy.

T / F

e.

Speculation of more dollars being printed might raise the price of gold.

T / F

f.

A weaker dollar means the price of gold also goes down.

T / F

g.

An economist cast doubt on whether the dollar affected gold prices.

T / F

h.

The economist said the dollar was a safe haven in troubled times.

T / F

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

1.

ever

a.

weakening

2

concerns

b.

more and more

3.

faltering

c.

misery

4.

gloom

d.

experts

5.

increasingly

e.

effect

6.

analysts

f.

shelters

7.

boost

g.

in history

8.

impact

h.

comparatively

9.

relatively

i.

worries

10.

safe havens

j.

strengthen

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

1.

The price of gold went past the

a.

havens

2

growing concerns about a

b.

economic slowdown

3.

fears of a worldwide

c.

measures

4.

debt

d.

factors

5.

more economic

e.

$1,900 per ounce mark

6.

announce new stimulus

f.

up gold prices

7.

print more money to

g.

possible recession

8.

A weakened dollar drives

h.

gloom

9.

market

i.

crisis

10.

safe

j.

boost America’s economy

 


 
 

WHILE READING / LISTENING

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

The price of gold went (1) ____________ the $1,900 per ounce mark for the first time ever on Monday. The record rise is because of growing (2) ____________ about a possible recession in the global economy. Two main factors are driving fears of a worldwide economic (3) ____________ – the faltering U.S. economy and the debt (4) ____________ in Europe. Investors have traditionally put their money in gold during times of financial uncertainty. They see it as a (5) ____________ investment. This saw the price of gold rise to $1,913 an ounce in Singapore before (6) ____________ down to $1,897 an ounce at the close of trading. Industry experts believe gold prices could (7) ____________ even further as more economic (8) ____________ makes investors increasingly nervous.

 

 

 

settling
gloom
crisis
concerns
rise
past
slowdown
safe

Analysts say that (9) ____________ that the US government may announce new stimulus measures is also increasing the price of gold. America’s Federal Reserve may have to (10) ____________ more money to boost America’s economy, which could see the US currency (11) ____________. A weakened dollar drives up gold prices. Analyst Colin Whitehead explained: "The underlying (12) ____________ of gold prices is the depreciating US dollar value, so the more money they print, the stronger gold gets." Another (13) ____________, Peter Richardson of Morgan Stanley, suggested market (14) ____________ had little impact on gold. He said: “Gold has continued to blast ahead even with a (15) ____________ strengthening U.S. dollar, strongly performing treasuries and other safe (16) ____________.”

 

 

economist
print
havens
speculation
driver
relatively
weaken
factors

LISTENING – Listen and fill in the gaps

The price of gold went past the $1,900 ____________________ the first time ever on Monday. The record rise is because ____________________ about a possible recession in the global economy. Two main factors are driving fears of a worldwide economic slowdown – the faltering U.S. economy ____________________ in Europe. Investors have traditionally put their money in gold during times ____________________. They see it as a safe investment. This saw the price of gold rise to $1,913 an ounce in Singapore ____________________ to $1,897 an ounce at the close of trading. Industry experts believe gold prices could rise even further as more economic gloom makes investors ____________________.

Analysts say that speculation that the US government may announce new ____________________ also increasing the price of gold. America’s Federal Reserve may have to print ____________________ America’s economy, which could see the ____________________. A weakened dollar drives up gold prices. Analyst Colin Whitehead explained: "The underlying driver of gold ____________________ US dollar value, so the more money they print, the stronger gold gets." Another economist, Peter Richardson of Morgan Stanley, suggested market factors had ____________________. He said: “Gold has continued to blast ahead even with a relatively strengthening U.S. dollar, strongly performing treasuries ____________________.”

AFTER READING / LISTENING

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

gold

price

 

 

 

  • 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:

  • past
  • growing
  • factors
  • times
  • settling
  • gloom
  • announce
  • boost
  • drives
  • stronger
  • impact
  • havens

STUDENT GOLD SURVEY

Write five GOOD questions about gold 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.

GOLD 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 ‘gold’?

c)

What do you think of gold?

d)

Do you have any interest in gold prices?

e)

What do you think of gold reaching record prices?

f)

Would you invest in gold?

g)

Are you affected by the global economic slowdown?

h)

Where do you think the Euro debt crisis will go?

i)

How much debt has there been in your life?

j)

What makes you nervous about the future?

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

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

a)

Did you like reading this article?

b)

What do you know about a government introducing stimulus measures in an economy?

c)

Are you worried about your government’s economy?

d)

What happens if a government prints more money?

e)

Have you ever invested in anything?

f)

Do you think economists really know what they’re doing?

g)

What do / will you do to protect your money?

h)

Do you have any gold?

i)

What do you think the global economy will be like in 20 years?

j)

What questions would you like to ask an expert in gold prices?

LANGUAGE – MULTIPLE CHOICE

The price of gold went past the $1,900 per ounce (1) ___ for the first time ever on Monday. The record rise is because of (2) ___ concerns about a possible recession in the global economy. Two main factors are (3) ___ fears of a worldwide economic slowdown – the faltering U.S. economy and the debt crisis in Europe. Investors have traditionally put their money (4) ___ gold during times of financial uncertainty. They see it as a safe investment. This saw the price of gold rise to $1,913 an ounce in Singapore before settling (5) ___ to $1,897 an ounce at the close of trading. Industry experts believe gold prices could rise even further as more economic gloom makes investors (6) ___ nervous.

Analysts say that speculation that the US government may announce new (7) ___ measures is also increasing the price of gold. America’s Federal Reserve may have to print more money to (8) ___ America’s economy, which could see the US currency (9) ___. A weakened dollar drives up gold prices. Analyst Colin Whitehead explained: "The underlying driver of gold prices is the depreciating US dollar value, so the more money they print, the stronger gold (10) ___." Another economist, Peter Richardson of Morgan Stanley, suggested market factors had little (11) ___ on gold. He said: “Gold has continued to blast ahead even with a relatively strengthening U.S. dollar, strongly performing treasuries and other safe (12) ___.”

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

1.

(a)

marked

(b)

market

(c)

marketing

(d)

mark

2.

(a)

grown

(b)

growing

(c)

growth

(d)

grows

3.

(a)

driving

(b)

surfing

(c)

cycling

(d)

flying

4.

(a)

up

(b)

of

(c)

in

(d)

at

5.

(a)

up

(b)

over

(c)

down

(d)

around

6.

(a)

increased

(b)

increasingly

(c)

increases

(d)

increase

7.

(a)

stimulus

(b)

simultaneous

(c)

simpleton

(d)

strenuous

8.

(a)

roost

(b)

joust

(c)

boast

(d)

boost

9.

(a)

weak

(b)

weaken

(c)

weakest

(d)

weekend

10.

(a)

gives

(b)

agrees

(c)

gains

(d)

gets

11.

(a)

compact

(b)

imprint

(c)

impact

(d)

compartment

12.

(a)

havens

(b)

heavens

(c)

heathens

(d)

hovels

WRITING

Write about gold 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 gold prices. Share what you discover with your partner(s) in the next lesson.

3. GOLD: Make a poster about gold. Show your work to your classmates in the next lesson. Did you all have similar things?

4. GOLD PRICES: Write a magazine article about gold prices. Include imaginary interviews with people who invest in gold.

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 a gold price expert. Ask him/her three questions about gold. Give him/her three of your opinions on it. Read your letter to your partner(s) in your next lesson. Your partner(s) will answer your questions.

ANSWERS

TRUE / FALSE:

a.

F

b.

F

c.

T

d.

T

e.

T

f.

F

g.

T

h.

F

SYNONYM MATCH:

1.

ever

a.

in history

2

concerns

b.

worries

3.

faltering

c.

weakening

4.

gloom

d.

misery

5.

increasingly

e.

more and more

6.

analysts

f.

experts

7.

boost

g.

strengthen

8.

impact

h.

effect

9.

relatively

i.

comparatively

10.

safe havens

j.

shelters

PHRASE MATCH:

1.

The price of gold went past the

a.

$1,900 per ounce mark

2

growing concerns about a

b.

possible recession

3.

fears of a worldwide

c.

economic slowdown

4.

debt

d.

crisis

5.

more economic

e.

gloom

6.

announce new stimulus

f.

measures

7.

print more money to

g.

boost America’s economy

8.

A weakened dollar drives

h.

up gold prices

9.

market

i.

factors

10.

safe

j.

havens

GAP FILL:

Price of gold hits all-time high

The price of gold went (1) past the $1,900 per ounce mark for the first time ever on Monday. The record rise is because of growing (2) concerns about a possible recession in the global economy. Two main factors are driving fears of a worldwide economic (3) slowdown – the faltering U.S. economy and the debt (4) crisis in Europe. Investors have traditionally put their money in gold during times of financial uncertainty. They see it as a (5) safe investment. This saw the price of gold rise to $1,913 an ounce in Singapore before (6) settling down to $1,897 an ounce at the close of trading. Industry experts believe gold prices could (7) rise even further as more economic (8) gloom makes investors increasingly nervous.

Analysts say that (9) speculation that the US government may announce new stimulus measures is also increasing the price of gold. America’s Federal Reserve may have to (10) print more money to boost America’s economy, which could see the US currency (11) weaken. A weakened dollar drives up gold prices. Analyst Colin Whitehead explained: "The underlying (12) driver of gold prices is the depreciating US dollar value, so the more money they print, the stronger gold gets." Another (13) economist, Peter Richardson of Morgan Stanley, suggested market (14) factors had little impact on gold. He said: “Gold has continued to blast ahead even with a (15) relatively strengthening U.S. dollar, strongly performing treasuries and other safe (16) havens.”

LANGUAGE WORK

1 - d

2 - b

3 - a

4 - c

5 - c

6 - b

7 - a

8 - d

9 - b

10 - d

11 - c

12 - a

 

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