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Aretha Franklin: Respect

Course: Weekly lessons, Unit: Popular culture

  • 65 mins
  • In class
  • Writing
  • A2


Learning goals:

  • Understand and respond to the content and language of the lyrics of a classic song
  • Write a personal response to the song

Published by

EF Education First


Success criteria:

  • Correctly answer questions on an article about a classic song
  • Accurately recreate lyrics from the song by reordering words and phrases
  • Produce a paragraph giving a personal response to the song
  • Share opinions and feelings about a favourite song

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Activities (11)

Introduction

Introduction

Recommendations

  • 2 mins
  • Class
  • Core activity


Student instructions

No instructions


Teacher notes

No teacher notes

 

Warm up

Warm up

Recommendations

  • 8 mins
  • Class
  • Individual, Pair, Group, Class


Student instructions

Your teacher will tell you to watch one of the music videos. Make notes in answer to the questions about your video.


Teacher notes

The aim of this activity is to introduce the topic of soul music and activate students' knowledge of and feelings about this genre.
Assign individuals or pairs one of the three videos to watch, so that a roughly equal number of students watches each one. Have students take notes on their answers.
Then regroup students to share ideas before discussing the answers as a class.
Suggested answers

 

Introducing Aretha 1

Introducing Aretha 1

Recommendations

  • 5 mins
  • Individual
  • Core activity


Student instructions

Watch the video and think about the songs you hear. Then discuss the questions in Introducing Aretha 2.


Teacher notes

The aim of this activity is to introduce Aretha Franklin and activate students' knowledge of her and her music. The discussion questions are in Introducing Aretha 2.
Before they watch, ask students if they know any Aretha Franklin songs and which ones would they expect contestants to cover in talent shows like The Voice.
Language notes

 

Introducing Aretha 2

Introducing Aretha 2

Recommendations

  • 4 mins
  • Pair, Group
  • Core activity


Student instructions

Discuss the questions about the songs you heard in Introducing Aretha 1.


Teacher notes

The aim of this activity is to introduce Aretha Franklin and activate students' knowledge of her and her music. The questions refer to the video in Introducing Aretha 1.


Suggested answers

 

Aretha's life and work

Aretha's life and work

Recommendations

  • 7 mins
  • Individual, Pair, Class
  • Core activity


Student instructions

Read the article about 'Respect' and decide if the statements are 'True' or 'False'.


Teacher notes

The aim of this activity is to find out more about the Aretha Franklin song 'Respect' and to introduce some vocabulary for discussing this song.
Encourage stronger readers to try to do the activity without the glossary, and to consult a dictionary instead if strictly necessary.
At this point, avoid mentioning that the song was written by and originally performed by Otis Redding, a man, as this will be revealed in Respond. However, some students may already know this fact. If this is the case, then you may wish to ask students to think about the questions they will be asked in Respond, to prepare them to interpret the lyrics of the song in different ways.


 

Watch

Watch

Recommendations

  • 4 mins
  • Individual
  • Core activity


Student instructions

Watch the video and do the Jumbled lyrics activity.


Teacher notes

The aim of this activity is to watch a video of Aretha Franklin's 'Respect'. It prepares students for the Jumbled lyrics activity.

 

Jumbled lyrics

Jumbled lyrics

Recommendations

  • 8 mins
  • Individual, Pair, Class
  • Core activity


Student instructions

Put the words in the lines from 'Respect' in order.


Teacher notes

The aim of this activity is to understand key lyrics from 'Respect' by putting the words in the correct order.
It might be practical for students to work in pairs, with one controlling the video in Watch to replay the key sections.
After they have completed the activity, have students try to understand the meaning of the lines, and describe situations where someone might use them. For example, a woman who does a lot of things for her partner, who then doesn't treat her well when he comes home from work.

 

Respond

Respond

Recommendations

  • 6 mins
  • Pair, Group, Class
  • Challenge


Student instructions

No instructions


Teacher notes

The aim of this activity is to respond to the content of the song by discussing how its meaning changes from different perspectives. Students can refer to the stimulus, which contains the correct lines from the Jumbled lyrics activity.
The examples are to stimulate discussion, but students can think of other perspectives that they feel are most relevant to them. Tell students that they do not have to imagine that the lyrics are always about love. They can ignore words like 'baby' or references to kisses in the lyrics, and imagine the speaker is addressing someone else, like a boss, politician, or simply a fellow human being. They could also change other lyrics to fit with the new perspective.

 

Plan and produce

Plan and produce

Recommendations

  • 10 mins
  • Individual
  • Core activity


Student instructions

No instructions


Teacher notes

The aim of this activity is to respond to the content of 'Respect' by writing a short text. Students should consult the reference material 'Writing about a song' for a recommended structure and useful language.
Encourage fast finishers to add more detail and/or examples to their paragraph.

 

Follow up

Follow up

Recommendations

  • 6 mins
  • Individual, Pair, Group, Class
  • Core activity


Student instructions

Choose a song that you like by any artist and discuss the questions.


Teacher notes

The aim of this activity is to personalize the topic of the lesson in a discussion about songs the students like.
Have students briefly research their song, looking up the lyrics online if necessary, before sharing their ideas with a partner or group.
It is not necessary for students to write another paragraph as they did in Plan and produce, but they may take notes if they need to.

 

Exit ticket

Exit ticket

Recommendations

  • 5 mins
  • Individual
  • Core activity


Student instructions

Look through the work you did in this lesson and answer the questions.


Teacher notes

The aim of this activity is for students to review their work from the lesson, and identify what they did well and what they would like to improve.
 
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