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My 1,000
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Date: Oct 7, 2005
Level: Easier (Try the harder lesson.)
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1,000 IDEAS FOR ESL CLASSES: Breaking News English.com's e-Book

THE ARTICLE

A fifteen-year-old American schoolgirl has just become the richest woman in golf. Michelle Wie became a professional golfer yesterday by accepting sponsorship deals with Nike and Sony. She will receive $10 million a year. The teenage sensation will also become one of the most recognized faces in the world. She is already golf’s most famous teenager since Tiger Woods. She said her new riches and fame would not change her. She is determined to finish her studies at high school and wants to attend Stanford University. She said: “I'm very excited. I want to work hard to become the best golfer in the world.”

Wie has a big challenge ahead of her. She wants to compete against the men and show that women golfers are as good as guys. She wants to break the gender barrier by playing in one of golf’s four Major tournaments for men. She has support from an important backer in her ambition. Golf’s number one Tiger Woods has highly praised Wie. He said the pressure of men’s golf would be no problem for her. Wie knows there will be big tests ahead. She said: “Being a pro, everything will be at a higher stake.” She started her professional career by donating $500,000 to America’s Hurricane Relief Fund.

WARM-UPS

1. FIFTEEN: Imagine you are fifteen again. Do you dream about being rich? Do you dream about being famous? How much pocket money / allowance do your parents give you? Write down all of the things you want to do and buy. Now walk around the class and talk to the other fifteen-year-olds about money.

2. IF I HAD: Finish the following sentence starters about what you would do with lots and lots of money. Discuss them with your partner(s).

  1. If I had $10,000,000, I’d immediately _________________________________.
  2. If I had $10 million, I’d never ________________________________________.
  3. If I had all that money, it’d __________________________________________.
  4. If I were incredibly rich, I could _______________________________________.
  5. If I won a fortune, I’d give __________________________________________.
  6. If I got my hands on $10,000,000, my life ______________________________.
  7. If I became a multi-millionaire, I wouldn’t, ______________________________.
  8. If I came into that much money, ______________________________________.

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

Fifteen-year-olds / golf / famous faces / Tiger Woods / high school / Nike / Sony / women’s sport / pressure / challenges / donating money to charity

Have a chat about the topics you liked. For more conversation, change topics and partners frequently.

4. GOLF: Spend one minute writing down all of the different words you associate with golf. Share your words with your partner(s) and talk about them. Together, put the words into different categories.

5. WIE DEBATES: Debate each of the arguments below with a partner for just two minutes, before moving on to the next partner and debate. Student A agrees with the first argument, Student B, the second.

  1. Michelle Wie doesn’t deserve $10 million. vs. She does.
  2. Fifteen-year-olds should not be millionaires. vs. Anyone can be a millionaire.
  3. Wie will help women’s sport. vs. Women’s sport doesn’t need help.
  4. Sony and Nike should help the poor. vs. The poor can’t play golf like Wie.
  5. Michelle Wie is a good example to all teenagers. vs. She’s just a lucky child.
  6. Giving $10 million to a child is bad. vs. Wie will earn the $10 million.
  7. Wie will help reduce the gender gap. vs. Only on the golf course.
  8. The world is an unfair place. I work hard but don’t get $10 million. vs. Tough.

6. TEENAGE SENSATIONS: In pairs / groups, talk about the teenage sensations in your country – sports stars, singers, actors, etc. Are they very popular with teenagers and adults? What is your opinion of them?


 
 

BEFORE READING / LISTENING

1. TRUE / FALSE: Look at the article’s headline and guess whether these sentences are true (T) or false (F):

a.

An American schoolgirl became a top-earning professional golfer.

T / F

b.

The schoolgirl will become one of the world’s most famous people.

T / F

c.

She said the success and money would change her.

T / F

d.

She wants to skip school and focus on golf.

T / F

e.

She has already played in the men’s US Major tournament.

T / F

f.

Tiger Woods said she would have no problems handling pressure.

T / F

g.

She said she needed to eat more steak to be the world’s best golfer.

T / F

h.

She immediately gave five percent of the $10 million to charity.

T / F

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

a.

richest

agreements

b.

accepting

go to

c.

deals

trials

d.

recognized

backing

e.

attend

agreeing to

f.

ahead

giving

g.

guys

wealthiest

h.

support

in front

i.

tests

well known

j.

donating

men

3. PHRASE MATCH: Match the following phrases from the article (sometimes more than one combination is possible):

a.

accepting sponsorship deals

would not change her

b.

teenage

the best golfer in the world

c.

She said her new riches and fame

praised Wie

d.

She is determined to finish her

to America’s Hurricane Relief Fund

e.

I want to work hard to become

with Nike and Sony

f.

Wie has a big challenge

big tests ahead

g.

break the

studies at high school

h.

Tiger Woods has highly

ahead of her

i.

Wie knows there will be

sensation

j.

donating $500,000

gender barrier


 
 

AFTER READING / LISTENING

WHICH WORD? Strike through the incorrect word in each of the pairs in bold.

$10 million for golf’s 15-year-old Wie

A fifteen-year-old American pensioner / schoolgirl has just become the richest woman in golf. Michelle Wie became a professional golfer yesterday by accepting sponsorship deals / bills with Nike and Sony. She will receive $10 million a year. The teenage sense / sensation will also become one of the most recognized faces in the world. She is already golf’s most famous teenager for / since Tiger Woods. She said her new riches and frame / fame would not change her. She is determined to finish her studies at high school and wants to attend / pretend Stanford University. She said: “I'm very excited. I want to work hard to become the best golfer in the world.”

Wie has a big challenge ahead of her. She wants to compete / complete against the men and show that women golfers are as bad / good as guys. She wants to break the gender / garden barrier by playing in one of golf’s four Major tournaments for men. She has support from an important backer / back in her ambition. Golf’s number one Tiger Woods has highly praised Wie. He said the pressure of men’s golf would be no problem for her. Wie knows there will be big tests / pests ahead. She said: “Being a pro, everything will be at a higher stake / steak.” She started her professional career by donating $500,000 to America’s Hurricane Relief Fund.

AFTER READING / LISTENING

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

  • 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. WHICH WORD? 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. STUDENT “RICH TEENAGERS” SURVEY: In pairs / groups, write down questions about millionaire teenagers.

  • Ask other classmates your questions and note down their answers.
  • Go back to your original partner / group and compare your findings.
  • Make mini-presentations to other groups on your findings.

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

  • just
  • sponsorship
  • sensation
  • riches
  • determined
  • attend
  • challenge
  • guys
  • barrier
  • praised
  • tests
  • donating

DISCUSSION

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

  1. What did you think when you first read this headline?
  2. Did the headline make you want to read the article?
  3. Have you heard much about Michelle Wie?
  4. What do you think of Michelle Wie getting $10 million a year?
  5. Why do you think Nike and Sony are paying so much?
  6. Do you think Sony and Nike are paying too much?
  7. Would you encourage your children to take up golf or another sport for the chance of becoming rich and famous?
  8. Do you think money and success will change her?
  9. Would having $10 million a year change you?
  10. Do you like golf?

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

  1. Did you like reading this article?
  2. What do you think about what you read?
  3. Do you think Michelle Wie can break down gender barriers in sport?
  4. Do you think women will ever be able to challenge men at golf, tennis or other sports?
  5. Do you think it’s OK to give 15-year-olds $10 million?
  6. Do you think women’s sport might one day become more popular than men’s sport?
  7. Do you think Michelle Wie is setting a good example to all teenagers around the world?
  8. Do you think Nike and Sony should give $10 million to the world’s poor teenagers?
  9. Are you good at handling pressure?
  10. Did you like this discussion?

AFTER DISCUSSION: Join another partner / group and tell them what you talked about.

  1. What question would you like to ask about this topic?
  2. What was the most interesting thing you heard?
  3. Was there a question you didn’t like?
  4. Was there something you totally disagreed with?
  5. What did you like talking about?
  6. Do you want to know how anyone else answered the questions?
  7. Which was the most difficult question?

SPEAKING

MICHELLE WIE ROLE PLAY: Is it fair that a 15-year-old girl should get so much money? Take part in this role play about Michelle Wie’s $10 million and see what opinions you hear.
Team up with classmates who have the same role. Develop your roles and discuss ideas and “strategies” before the role play begins

Role A – MICHELLE WIE

You have been playing golf since you were three. You have worked very hard to get to the top. You have a natural talent and talented people can earn big money. You entertain millions of people. You make people happy. Because of you, thousands of people have jobs in the golf industry.

THINK OF MORE REASONS WHY YOU DESERVE YOUR MILLIONS.

Role B – A REFUGEE IN A THIRD WORLD COUNTRY (AGED 15)

You do not understand the rich world. You live on 50 cents a day. You have one meal a day. Your parents have no life. Ten million dollars would feed your refugee camp for several years. Babies would not die. The world is a cruel place. Michelle Wie is very lucky. She can smile.

THINK OF MORE REASONS WHY YOU SHOULD RECEIVE FINANCIAL AID.

Role C – NIKE’S MARKETING MANAGER

You think Michelle Wie will be the greatest women’s golfer ever. She works very hard for her money. Michelle helps sell Nike products. This means more money for workers in factories in the developing world. Michelle Wie’s success will help people in the developing world.

THINK OF MORE REASONS WHY MICHELLE DESREVES EVERY CENT.

Role D – JO AVERAGE (AGED 15)

You study much harder than Michelle Wie. Your parents are poor. You go to a school, which rarely sends students to university. Why is Michelle Wie so lucky? It is bad that she can earn more by hitting a ball along a field than your hard-working parents can earn in 500 years of very hard work.

THINK OF MORE REASONS WHY LIFE IS UNFAIR.

Change roles and repeat the role play. Comment in groups about the differences between the two role plays.

Decide whether or not Michelle Wie deserves $10 million a year.

LISTENING

Listen and fill in the spaces.

$10 million for golf’s 15-year-old Wie

A fifteen-year-old American schoolgirl has _____ become the richest woman in golf. Michelle Wie became a professional golfer yesterday by __________ sponsorship deals with Nike and Sony. She will receive $10 million a year. The teenage __________ will also become one of the most __________ faces in the world. She is already golf’s most famous teenager since Tiger Woods. She said her new _______ and _______ would not change her. She is determined to finish her studies at high school and wants to _______ Stanford University. She said: “I'm very excited. I want to work _______ to become the best golfer in the world.”

Wie has a big challenge _______ of her. She wants to compete against the men and show that women golfers are as good as _______. She wants to break the gender _______ by playing in one of golf’s four Major tournaments for men. She has support from an important _______ in her ambition. Golf’s number one Tiger Woods has highly _______ Wie. He said the pressure of men’s golf would be no problem for her. Wie knows there will be big _______ ahead. She said: “Being a pro, everything will be at a higher _______.” She started her professional career by __________ $500,000 to America’s Hurricane Relief Fund.

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 more information on Michelle Wie. Share your findings with your class in the next lesson.

3. FIRST DAY: Two days ago you were given $10 million. Write your diary / journal entry describing your first day as a multi-millionaire. Show your entries to your partners in your next class. Did you all write about similar things?

4. LETTER: Write a letter to Michelle Wie. Tell her what you think of her success. Give her advice on what to do so her success does not change her. Read your letter to your classmates in the next lesson. Did you all write about similar things?

ANSWERS

TRUE / FALSE:

a. T

b. T

c. F

d. F

e. F

f. T

g. F

h. T

SYNONYM MATCH:

a.

richest

wealthiest

b.

accepting

agreeing to

c.

deals

agreements

d.

recognized

well known

e.

attend

go to

f.

ahead

in front

g.

guys

men

h.

support

backing

i.

tests

trials

j.

donating

giving

PHRASE MATCH:

a.

accepting sponsorship deals

with Nike and Sony

b.

teenage

sensation

c.

She said her new riches and fame

would not change her

d.

She is determined to finish her

studies at high school

e.

I want to work hard to become

the best golfer in the world

f.

Wie has a big challenge

ahead of her

g.

break the

gender barrier

h.

Tiger Woods has highly

praised Wie

i.

Wie knows there will be

big tests ahead

j.

donating $500,000

to America’s Hurricane Relief Fund

WHICH WORD?

$10 million for golf’s 15-year-old Wie

A fifteen-year-old American pensioner / schoolgirl has just become the richest woman in golf. Michelle Wie became a professional golfer yesterday by accepting sponsorship deals / bills with Nike and Sony. She will receive $10 million a year. The teenage sense / sensation will also become one of the most recognized faces in the world. She is already golf’s most famous teenager for / since Tiger Woods. She said her new riches and frame / fame would not change her. She is determined to finish her studies at high school and wants to attend / pretend Stanford University. She said: “I'm very excited. I want to work hard to become the best golfer in the world.”

Wie has a big challenge ahead of her. She wants to compete / complete against the men and show that women golfers are as bad / good as guys. She wants to break the gender / garden barrier by playing in one of golf’s four Major tournaments for men. She has support from an important backer / back in her ambition. Golf’s number one Tiger Woods has highly praised Wie. He said the pressure of men’s golf would be no problem for her. Wie knows there will be big tests / pests ahead. She said: “Being a pro, everything will be at a higher stake / steak.” She started her professional career by donating $500,000 to America’s Hurricane Relief Fund.

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