For Teachers: Stereotypes Lesson Plan
This topic is always interesting and really gets students speaking. It's always interesting to hear how other nations see others. I created this lesson plan a couple of summers ago when I had a very diverse group of students studying in England from all the way from Japan to Argentina. Of course, you first need to make sure your students won't get offended by this topic and can handle it. Also you'll need access to some technology to make life easier as there is a video involved in the lesson. If you use it with a monolingual group of students, I'd be really interested to know how it goes, as I haven't....yet.
This lesson focuses on speaking in the form of giving opinions and views. It also has a reading(through video) where students are required to read quickly for key information. Additionally, it builds on vocabulary and expressions for describing people and habits.
All of the material including this lesson plan can be found at the bottom of this post in PDF format.
1. Introduce the lesson by handing out or displaying the following...
In a perfect world the police are …. the cooks are.... the mechanics are ….. the lovers are...... and everything is organised by the …..
Put Ss in pairs or groups and have them complete their ideas before sharing. In feedback you can elaborate on some of the answers and focus on any general language or mistakes that might come up. After you have rounded up the perfect world, ask them to do the same, but with this time in an awful world. Follow the same steps as above before moving on.
In a awful world the police are …. the cooks are.... the mechanics are ….. the lovers are...... and everything is organised by the …..
2. Show Ss the American flag and ask them to write down words they think of when they think about America and the people. Stress the people, otherwise you'll just get a list of all things American.
In feedback ask Ss to share their ideas before telling them that you are going to show them a video.
3.Tell Ss you are going to show them a video in which different people give their opinion about America and its people. Tell them each person speaks in their own language, including English, so it is their job to read the subtitles and listening for how each country's person describes America
Give the students the opportunity to watch the video twice before going through the answers. After checking the answers ask Ss if there are any surprising answers, and did they say the same things as you?
Note eXtra: An extension which can be done here and I found to work quite well, albeit a little fun, is to ask Ss before the second play to decide which language they like the sound of most. You can then ask Ss after you've checked the answers, which language they preferred. After everyone has given their answer, tell Ss it's interesting how other people 'hear' other languages and ask one of your Ss if anyone can imitate the Chinese language - sorry China. No doubt everyone will have a chuckle. You can then show them the following video and then ask if they think the languages in the video really sound like that.
4.Tell Ss you're going to give them a list of countries and ask them to work with their partner(s) to think of an adjective, expression or more to describe each country. You might use the country you are in as an example. Encourage Ss to use stereotypes.
Here are the countries I used. I split the list of countries down the middle, and had A and B groups. Of course you can add, change, and chop them.
Saudi Arabia Jamaica
You will find out a lot in feedback if you have a multinational class. You will also need to be ready for any vocabulary or expressions that you students need as 99% of the time they will need to say something that they don't know.
5. Tell Ss you went on the Internet and took some comments from people talking about the countries they've just been talking about. Give an example of your own country and then hand out the list. It has some language your students may not know in bold. Encourage peer teaching and monitor and help groups who are struggling. Remember, they should decide on which country relates to each comment.
These comments are not real and were typed up by me. You can change them and come up with your own if you like. There is also no right or wrong answer, so you can choose whichever country you want to connect them to. That said, I have included my answers in case you want to use mine.
In feedback go over the answers and clarify the bold adjectives and expressions if needed before getting the students' ideas and telling them the answers.
You will probably want to have some kind of remembering stage her to help the students remember any newly learnt vocabulary or expression. I had an upper-intermediate / advanced group, so there were only a few new words / expression. I used an impromptu remembering game here.
6. To end the lesson and to try and re-enforce the use of the previous adjectives and expressions, along with allowing your Ss to talk about and squashing any stereotypes from their own country. Give the students the my country handout and give them a few minutes to think over their answers before getting up and mingling with other students and sharing information about their own country's.
You can then round up the lesson by asking your students if they found out anything interesting or surprising.