It's movie time!

Published on 15th March, 2012 in Global Bloggers by Valentina Castellani

My students often ask me if it is a good idea to watch a movie to practise English. And it is, of course, a fun way to practise listening, learn new vocabulary, expressions, functions … This question inspired me to dedicate a lesson to movies. Global Elementary, as usual, comes in handy in this situation! I used Unit 5 ‘Film and Television’ Part 2.

First of all, I started off with a quick brainstorm of movie-related vocabulary, genres, actors, etc. I then asked  my students to look at the pictures at the top of page 57. I asked them which type of film they thought those people were watching. Students worked in pairs and then they shared their answers with the rest of the class. Then, we looked at exercise 2 in the Vocabulary section of the unit. I asked them to complete the definitions of each genre with the missing adjective. Students worked on their own, they checked their answers in pairs and we then looked at them together.

I brought in some movie posters. All together, we decided what genre they were. I asked them if they knew any of those movies and ask them to give me a brief summary of the plot. I then explained to them that the quick summary they just gave us is called a pitch.

I wrote on a few strips of paper each movie pitch as in the Reading section of the unit, and posted them around the room. In pairs students had to go around the classroom, read the pitch and match it to one of the movie posters we had just looked at.  We then looked at exercise 3 in the Reading section, and we focused on characters and the main problem in each movie. We focused on vocabulary in the text and I made sure they knew all the words and we looked at new vocabulary together.

We moved onto the writing section of the unit and focused on task A. I put students in pairs and asked them to think of three famous movies. For each movie they had to write a small pitch as the ones we had seen earlier on. Each pitch was written on a strip of paper, folded, and put in a box. In turns students picked a strip of paper from the box, read it, and tried to guess the movie. A fun game to finish this lesson!

And as homework, of course, they had to attempt watching a movie in English!


  • Nice post. I’ve not used the Elementary book yet, but I have to say that Global has been the best investment I’ve made as an English teacher, it works so well because it doesn’t talk down to students, gives them authentic language, challenges them and, best of all, makes them want to talk. I’ve consigned Joyce the Postwoman to the bin.

    Daniel on 15 March, 2012
  • Hi Daniel,
    thankyou very much.
    I agree, Global is a wonderful resource for us all. It’s refreshing to see such a different approach and variety in teaching English. I especially love the fact that it integrates all skills and works on functional language. I thoroughly recommend Global to all teachers out there!
    all the best!

    Valentina on 26 March, 2012
  • Thanks to both of you for these comments, and to Valentina for the nice post above. I like the way you adapted the film pitch scenario for your own class and made it into a game with strips of paper. Great!

    Lindsay Clandfield on 27 March, 2012
  • Thank you very much Lindsay!
    I’m really really glad you enjoyed the post!

    and yes, Global is a a wonderful resources for us all, thanks a million for it!

    Valentina on 27 March, 2012