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|Here is the third part of my article about Task Based Teaching and Learning while giving my English club classes. If you read the first and the second parts you know that I started to use this approach trying to engage students into the classroom activities, to make classes as useful and interesting as possible. |
Last time my students and I went sightseeing in NY. It was fun class which gave us lots of pictures next to the famous places in NY such as the Statue of Liberty, Time square and the others. This time we are going to visit some fast food places and have a debate part proving the advantages and disadvantages of existing the fast food stands, places.
After the winter break my students are full of energy and want to create something new. I decided to use that and asked one of my students to help me during the class. He was about to play the role of the fast food hostess and take an order, cook food, serve it to the customers, take the money and give change. After some tuition and practice I and my helper were ready to have a class.
The classroom looked like a McDonald’s café: the tables were rearranged and put along the walls, there was a table, playing the role of the counter in the middle and a cooking zone behind it.
If you remember last time my students and I were tired and decided that we need to eat something. After some discussion we had chosen McDonald’s café as a cheap and fast way to get some food. So we started from that point (all of us were standing in the corridor pretending to decide where to go).
Teacher: Where will we go to get some food?
Student: Let’s visit any McDonald’s fast food place. I have always dreamt to visit it. There are no McDonald’s food stands in my city.
Teacher: Do you agree guys? Ok, let’s go.
(We entered the classroom and got into the line. I used the interactive board with the dinner menu on it so this way it looked just like in McDonald’s).
Teacher: Guys, your task is to decide what you want. Hurry up, please, before it is our turn to order.
Student: I want….a burger….cheeseburger….chicken wings…strips ….coke is my favourite….
(My students were enthusiastic about ordering themselves).
When the first student came to the counter he saw the fast food worker:
FFW: Hello! How can I help you?
Student: Good afternoon! I would like a burger and some fries, please.
FFW: What size of fries: small, medium or large?
Student: Medium, please.
FFW: Anything to drink?
Student: Large soda, please.
FFW: It is 6.45$.
Student: Do you take credit card?
FFW: Sure. Thanks for coming….Next.
My students one by one were taking trays (we took them in our school canteen) and waiting for their food to be cooked (just served because everyone brought whatever they wanted to order and they simply got it).
Teacher: Bon appetite everyone!
We were eating and talking about our food like and dislikes. After about 10-15 minutes I asked my students a question:
- I see you like McDonald’s but what about the good of such kind of food? Is it healthy?
Let’s watch a short video telling us about McDonald’s and other fast food places in the USA (http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/magazine/2014/08/best-and-worst-fast-food-restaurants-in-america/index.htm). Now you know the top fast food places in the USA according to their customers’ reports. Here is another video telling us about the necessity or forbiddance to eat fast food (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eMgkuqxrlWg).
Teacher: What conclusion can you make after watching this video?
Student: We know that soda is too sweet and a burger has too many calories.
Teacher: What happens to people who often eat fast food?
Student: They gain weight, get cholesterol, acid …and people SOULD STOP eating in McDonald’s on a regular basis.
Teacher: You are right. Now we have a person who is really addicted to fast food. I am going to be that person. I have so many problems with my health because of my weight. I want you to make advice for me showing that fast food is ruining my life. You have sheets of paper in front of you and a couple of minutes.
Here are two pieces of advice which are my favourite:
1)My dear, Natalya! Please, look into the mirror. You are a good-looking woman. Think of your future, fast food makes you get fat; your health becomes worse and worse. If you like it that much go to McDonald’s once a month it will not harm you this way.
2)Everything is good till the time you lose control of it. If you like fast food, visit it but not often, go to the gym, love yourself and value you life.
Teacher: Did you get anything useful during our English club lesson today?
Student: Of course. The experience of visiting the fast food place was interesting. We got some information about fast food itself. What will be the next class about?
Teacher: Next time we will take a bus and go to the capital of the USA. What city is that?
Student: Washington D.C.
Teacher: Good job! It was a nice trip with all of you. See you next time!
I was satisfied with my class. The class was relaxed, my students enjoyed the trip and got some experience. I achieved the main goal.
To be continued…
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