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Teachers' Room > Lesson Library > Browse Library

Instant Lesson

Wedding Dresses
White wedding gowns are not popular in Canada now. Canadian brides are choosing colored gowns and an English bride went to her wedding in a garbage truck! (Weddings, romance.)
Elementary
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Urban Foragers
Eating locally means different things to different people, but to urban foragers it can literally mean eating close to home. You may not realize it, but a wealth of healthy -- and free -- food may be growing just outside your front door. (Foraging in urban settings, eating locally grown food, restaurants, scanning, completing a table, comprehension, idioms using fruit and vegetables.)
Advanced
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Gifts to Kill a Romance
Yahoo! Personals has some advice on how to ensure it stays on track by avoiding gifts that can kill the romance. Kristen Sasser, Yahoo! Personals' online dating expert, has put together a list of the top 10 worst gifts for new relationships after asking Web site users for suggestions. (Dating, gift giving, Valentine's Day, brainstorming, working with unfamiliar vocabulary, reading for gist, some/any).
Intermediate
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Spoiled Kids
Nearly all parents think that American children today are spoiled - and over half of them say that they are largely to blame says a poll done in 2007. (Present simple tense, dialogue.)
Pre-Intermediate
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Fancy Pooch
Super Alsatian? Elvis the poodle? Dog owners are dressing up their dogs for costume parties. (Fancy dress, shopping habits, dogs, will for future facts and deciding something at the moment of speaking.)
Elementary
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Hungry Pandas
Giant pandas living in the wild in the misty mountains of southwest China are facing a possible food shortage as bamboo plants, their staple diet, near the end of their lifespan, state media said on Monday. (Pandas, conservation, brainstorming, listening gap fill, sequencing, conducting an interview, verbs of perception with active participles or bare infinitives).
Upper-Intermediate
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Aging World
Already, one in five Japanese are aged 65 or over and by mid-century a falling birth rate and rising longevity mean that figure will nearly double, while the population will drop by 30 percent to 90 million. Companies in the world's fastest-aging society are looking to older people as well as younger women, immigrants and even robots to fill the gaps. (Aging populations, work issues, making decisions, answering multiple choice questions, role play.)
Advanced
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The Secret Billionaire Giveaway
He wears a $15 watch, flies economy class and does not own a house or car. For years few guessed that Chuck Feeney was one of the world's biggest philanthropists, secretly giving away his billionaire fortune. (Philanthropy, making money and being rich, lifestyles, discussion, reading and note-taking, sharing information)
Intermediate
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Employing Bullies
Nearly half of working Americans said they suffered or witnessed workplace bullying ... according to a 2007 survey. Bullying at work remains a problem in different parts of the world. (Bullying at work, restructuring, depression, the US, Norway, simple present, present perfect and simple past contrasted, uses of present perfect simple, for and since.)
Intermediate
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Halloween
Kmart Corp has been sued by a company that accused the retailer of ripping off its full-body banana costume design. Halloween is big business. U.S. shoppers are expected to spend $3.4 billion on costumes alone for the Oct. 31 holiday (Halloween, consumer spending, fancy dress costumes.)
Upper-Intermediate
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Testing Fathers
Men in Japan can now do a 'daddy exam'. The exam tries to make men think more about being dads in a country where men usually work long hours and leave their wives in charge of childrearing and household chores. (Parenting, work, families, Japan, present simple questions, reading for specific information, true or false, doing an interview, writing questions.)
Pre-Intermediate
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Big and Beautiful Cappuccinos
Jack Hanna is the world champion of coffee art--using the froth on your cappuccino to make pictures. The man from Sydney beat the Italians in the World Latte Art Champions and an Italian barman made a 330-gallon cappuccino, setting what he said was a world record. (Coffee, world records, spelling, prepositions.)
Elementary
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Farming Tourists
Like many farmers, Martin Busin works from dawn till nightfall, but he still needs the help of his cafe-au-lait cow, Miss, to bring in tourists to keep afloat his smallholding in Italy's mountainous Alto Adige region. (Agritourism, Italy, choosing a headline, using the context to guess a meaning of a word,choosing a headline , conducting an interview.)
Advanced
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Guns, Guns and More Guns
The United States has 90 guns for every 100 citizens, making it the most heavily armed society in the world, a report released on Tuesday said. (Guns, arms control, poverty and wealth, reading for the main idea, thinking carefully.)
Intermediate
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Space for Rent
"Galactic Suite", the first hotel planned in space, expects to open for business in 2012 and would allow guests to travel around the world in 80 minutes. If you've had enough of life on earth and want to get away from it all, start saving now. (Tourism, space, the future perfect)
Upper-Intermediate
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Smart Squirrels
A Finnish squirrel goes to a Finnish grocery shop at least twice a day to steal "Kinder Surprise" chocolate-shelled eggs and in Britain a squirrel helped police find a box of stolen crockery by encouraging them to follow it and then leading them to a tree. (Squirrels, animal behavior, crime, vocabulary, comprehension, discussion and prepositions.)
Elementary
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Early to Wed
A teacher flew thousands of miles across the Atlantic to Wales to attend his friend's wedding, only to discover he was a year early. (Being early and late, weddings, reading for the main idea, sequencing, writing questions in the present simple and past simple tenses, have to and don't have to.)
Pre-Intermediate
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Training Camp
Sweating, panting and some groaning, 400 Japanese worked out on Sunday with US fitness guru Billy Blanks, whose military-style exercises have become a huge hit in a country where waistlines are bulging. (Keeping fit, business ideas, conducting a survey.)
Upper-Intermediate
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Watching is Catching on
Armed with binoculars it takes to the bush to spot and identify winged creatures but this is not the common bird watcher -- it's the butterfly watcher, a relatively rare but fast growing species. (Butterflies and butterfly watching, conservation, hobbies, making predictions, comprehension, finding grammatical errors.)
Advanced
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Robin Hood Lives!
Robin Hood lives! People taking part in a game designed to explore egalitarian impulses in human nature consistently robbed from players assigned the most money while giving money to those with the least, scientists said on Wednesday. (Honesty and equality in society, Robin Hood, finding synonyms, reading for correct information, answering true or false questions, Internet research, expressing opinions.)
Upper-Intermediate
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Greyhound Gives a Picture
Every morning a Greyhound bus loads up with passengers to start its journey to Atlanta. The ride provides an insight into the lives of America's poor as the bus crosses the Deep South states of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Georgia. (Greyhound bus travel, descriptions of people, discussion, completing the gaps, choosing the best headline, completing a summary, understanding points of view and purpose, word families, writing an email.)
Advanced
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Hard Workers
The United States is the world's biggest economy but it does not guarantee workers paid vacation or holidays. One in five British workers spend longer in the office than they have to, a survey shows. Yet sixty percent would choose an extra week's holiday rather than an extra week's pay. (Paid holidays and vacations, annual leave, work pressures, 'either... or', superlative adjectives.)
Pre-Intermediate
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Mad Dash
A German mother-of-five drove her son to a jewelry store he wanted to rob because she was afraid he may come to some harm and a devoted mother traveled 900 miles (1,450 km) to take her son his GameBoy that he had left behind when he went on a school trip. (Parents, parenting, children, sequencing, irony, idioms).
Pre-Intermediate  Lesson Updated: 5 June 2007
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Yellow cabs to go Green
New York City's famed yellow taxi cabs will go green within five years...1,000 hybrid taxis -- powered by gasoline and electricity -- would be introduced by October 2008. (Alternative fuels, transport, the environment, hybrid vehicles, discussion, skimming, choose the best answer, reading and notetaking, first conditional, Internet research.)
Intermediate
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Real-life Avatar
A world away from Hollywood in remote eastern India the story of Avatar is being played out. Avatar tells the story of the Na'vi whose existence is threatened by a mining corporation which wants to exploit mineral deposits beneath a giant sacred tree. In India's state of Orissa, indigenous tribespeople are battling to stop Vedanta Resources from extracting bauxite from their sacred mountain. (Religion, environment, sharing information, making a diagram, timeline, discussion.)
Advanced
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Bilingual Pre-schoolers
Preschoolers who speak Spanish as their first language at home are losing their native tongue while also struggling to speak English, according to American researchers.(Language learning, bilingualism, choosing the best answer, sentence extracts, true, false or not given, word find puzzle.)
Intermediate
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Rats Rats Rats
A video shown on television showed rats scampering across a New York City restaurant floor. With nearly four million rats born every day experts have warned that the rodents could spread more disease through towns and cities in developing nations. (Rats, sanitation, restaurants and the spread of disease, pest control, vocabulary work, understanding the main idea, listening gap fill, prediction, true or false, shouting dictation game, pair crossword, although and because.)
Pre-Intermediate  Lesson Updated: 5 April 2007
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Lost in The Big Apple
Ever wondered what would happen if you lost your wallet in a big city? If it happened in New York, chances are you would get it back. New Yorkers may have a reputation as being busy, cynical and tough but most will take the trouble and effort to find the owner of a lost wallet, according to a new study. (Honesty, city versus countryside, problem solving, writing a definition, conducting an experiment, quantifier words.)
Upper-Intermediate
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Redbacks and Snakes on the Move
Snakes are going into urban areas in Australia because they are looking for water and redback spiders were going inside. (Snakes, spiders, Australia, comprehension, prediction, reading for understanding, answering true or false questions, countable and uncountable nouns, much, many, some, any, a few, a little, few, less)
Elementary
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Killer Games
A 2007 article says that violent video games do not make children into murderers. (Violent video games and effect on children, violence, discussion, vocabulary hunt, filling the gaps in a table, finding and correcting grammatical errors.)
Intermediate
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Left Behind Kids
Xiao Yun and Xiao Bo are, in many ways, typical rural Chinese kids. But when the 11 and 12-year-old return to their small cave home - still common for many here on the edge of the Loess Plateau in China's northwestern Shaanxi province - there are no parents waiting for them. (Text Organization, Problem Solving, Discussion, Research Project)
Advanced
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Shhh! Workers Sleeping!
A study of nearly 24,000 Greek adults published in 2007 found those who regularly took midday naps lowered their risk of dying from heart disease by more than a third. (Sleeping, health, business.)
Intermediate
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Water Crisis
Fleets of supertankers could one day ply the world's oceans laden not with oil but fresh water. The world's top climate scientists have issued the strongest warning yet that human activity was heating the planet. By 2100, water scarcity could impact between 1.1 and 3.2 billion people. (Water conservation, predicting from a headline, completing a table, interpreting, survey on water use, completing a poster slogan, finding grammatical errors.)
Upper-Intermediate  Lesson Updated: 9 February 2007
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Hot Chopsticks
A high school in Japan is going to have a chopstick test in its entrance exams. The test will take ten minutes and students will use chopsticks to move things like marbles and dice from one plate to another. (Discussion, be going to, completing a summary, reading for meaning, brainstorming.)
Elementary
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International Valentines
Chinese Valentine's Day, origins of Valentine's Day, Seven Sisters Festival, different customs in Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia, true and false, verb patterns with verbs, want and hope) Valentine crossword.
Pre-Intermediate
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"Not Mad" Cows Created
U.S. and Japanese scientists said on Sunday that they had used genetic engineering to produce cattle that resist mad cow disease.(Genetic engineering, Mad Cow Disease, BSE, CJD, scientific research, the passive.)
Intermediate
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Bushfires
Bushfires in Australia, science, nature, Australia, listening for understanding, reading and understanding, answering true and false questions, fire safety.)
Pre-Intermediate
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Education in Crisis
Ahmed waits outside his school's gates on a chilly midweek morning, holding his textbooks by his side. But as the majority of pupils and teachers fail to arrive, the 18-year-old, who is in his final year at high school, has to put off learning for yet another day. "It's canceled again today," he said. (Education in an area of conflict, Iraq, brainstorming vocabulary, checking predictions, completing a sentence summary, inferring, discussion, describing qualities.)
Advanced
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Wiggly Entertainment
Greg Page, the yellow Wiggle, has announced that he will retire from the Wiggles because of illness. Australia's top-selling children's phenomenon, a hyperactive band of preschool teachers, and a giggling dinosaur, has been extremely successful but now the group will be changing. (Children's entertainment, creating an image, brainstorming)
Intermediate
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What's Your Surname?
People with the name of Jones are traveling to Wales to set a new world record. In Sweden many people change their names. Why?? Do this lesson to find out. (Common surnames, Sweden, Wales, surnames, history of names, adjectives + too, present continuous tense.)
Elementary
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Thin is Not In
Fancy canapes and champagne have become rarer, guest-lists smaller and celebrities tougher to find in the front rows of some fashion shows these days and underweight models from fashion shows banned to stop teenagers from starving themselves. (Role-models, fashion and fashion shows, eating disorders, matching information, jigsaw reading, future forms--will and be going to for future decisions and intentions.)
Intermediate
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Safer Cars For Pedestrians
Safety stickers required on new cars in 2007, energy-absorbing bumpers, pop-up engine covers and windshield air bags could soon be added, child-safety seat restraints for children much safer than ordinary seat belts in crashes. (Safety features for cars and pedestrian fatalities, jigsaw reading, zero, definite and indefinite articles, listening and gap fill.)
Upper-Intermediate
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Dignity in Dying
The House of Lords blocked a controversial law today to allow doctors to help terminally ill patients end their lives. (Euthanasia, quality of life, the UK, laws, relative clauses.)
Upper-Intermediate
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Disappearing Fish
The world's fish and seafood populations will collapse by 2048 if current trends in habitat destruction and overfishing continue, resulting in less food for humans. In Japan fish is a cherished delicacy. Two articles that look at overfishing and the popularity of fish in Japan. (Depletion of fish stocks, conservation, eating seafood, survey, scanning, true or false, prepositions, brainstorming, first conditional.)
Upper-Intermediate
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Casualties on the Increase
2006 World's largest Lesson: Casualties on the increase - A record area was cleared of landmines worldwide last year, but casualties caused by the weapons rose by 11 percent. (Landmines facts, brainstorming, choosing the best answer, scanning, thinking carefully, research)
All levels lesson!
Intermediate
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Gone to the Dogs
Yappy hours for dogs, dog perfumes and dog parties. Cottages with lounge beds, color TV and VCRs for dogs on holiday. Find out about the booming pets' products industry: in 2006 about $7 billion will be spent on dogs. (Dogs, dog merchandise and luxury holidays, verb patterns: verbs that take an object and a to-infinitive, discussion, selling a product.)
Upper-Intermediate
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Lightning Safety
Seeking refuge in houses, schools or office buildings, unplugging computers and avoiding open fields during thunderstorms can help reduce the number of injuries and deaths caused by lightning during the summer months. Never use a mobile phone outside during a lightning strike. (Lightning, safety during thunderstorms, scanning, expressions using lightning, verb patterns.)
Upper-Intermediate  Lesson Updated: 20 October 2006
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Air Affecting Business
Andy Ridehalgh, a British expatriate who has worked as an English teacher for three years in Hong Kong, has had enough of the city's air pollution. (Air pollution, Hong Kong, the environment, first and second conditionals brainstorming, choose the best answer, matching information.)
Intermediate
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Disney Magic in Hong Kong
Opened last September in Hong Kong, Disney's magic kingdom has failed to hit its full-year 5.6 million visitors attendance target. Disney has suffered a number of controversies, including a lockout of angry ticket holders during the crunch Lunar New Year holidays, and the public airing of grievances by its staff who complained of low wages and mistreatment. (Discussion, choosing the best headline, completing a table of information, brainstorming, definite and indefinite articles.)
Advanced
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Head Room for Cyclists
Motorists give greater leeway to cyclists who do not wear safety helmets, according to a study by a academic in Britain who was hit by traffic twice as he rode his bike to carry out his research. (Bicycles, traffic safety, completing a summary, categorizing words, comprehension, articles - definite and indefinite)
Upper-Intermediate
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