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The opioid crisis in the United States

Course: Weekly lessons, Unit: In the news

  • 65 mins
  • In class
  • Listening
  • B2, C1


Learning goals:

  • Understand and respond to an authentic news report about drug addiction
  • Use a variety of listening strategies effectively

Published by

EF Education First


Success criteria:

  • Identify the main ideas in the video
  • Choose the definition of words in the video
  • Correctly answer questions about the video
  • Relate the content of the video to your own experiences and opinions

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Activities (11)

Introduction

Introduction

Recommendations

  • 2 mins
  • Class
  • Discussion


Student instructions

No instructions


Teacher notes

This lesson discusses drug use and its effects. Please consider students' attitudes to this topic when deciding on whether it is appropriate to use with your classes.

 

Warm up

Warm up

Recommendations

  • 4 mins
  • Pair
  • Web site


Student instructions

What do you know about the 'War on drugs' in the United States? Have you heard about the opioid crisis? Watch the video and describe what you see to another student.


Teacher notes

The aim of this activity is to activate students' knowledge of drugs and the law.

 

Lead in

Lead in

Recommendations

  • 5 mins
  • Pair, Group, Class
  • Discussion


Student instructions

Read the text about opioids and answer the question.


Teacher notes

The aim of this activity is to elicit students' attitudes towards drugs, and solutions to drug addiction.

Once students have discussed their answers with each other, elicit opinions as a class, if necessary.

 

Main ideas

Main ideas

Recommendations

  • 6 mins
  • Individual, Pair
  • Text entry, model


Student instructions

Watch the video and make notes on the things you see.


Teacher notes

The aim of this activity is for students to practise listening for the main ideas.

Have students read the questions before watching the video.

 

Language

Language

Recommendations

  • 5 mins
  • Individual, Pair
  • Matching, closed


Student instructions

Look at the script lines and match the definitions to the words and phrases.


Teacher notes

The aim of this activity is to introduce the key language from the video.

 

Practice

Practice

Recommendations

  • 6 mins
  • Individual, Pair
  • Gap fill, closed


Student instructions

Fill in the gaps to complete the text about the Opium Wars.


Teacher notes

The aim of this activity is to practise using the key language.

 

Apply

Apply

Recommendations

  • 5 mins
  • Individual
  • Writing, open


Student instructions

No instructions


Teacher notes

The aim of this activity is to give students freer practice in using the key language.

Ensure that students use the correct forms of the words.

TV shows or movies that students could write about include: Breaking Bad, Narcos, The Wire, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Trainspotting, or Gomorrah.

Extension

 

Detail

Detail

Recommendations

  • 7 mins
  • Individual, Pair
  • Multiple choice, closed


Student instructions

No instructions


Teacher notes

The aim of this activity is to understand specific information in the report.

Language notes

Many people need painkillers to cope with the pain caused by injuries from accidents or diseases. Synthetic opiates, like fentanyl, are painkillers that can only be legally obtained with a prescription from a doctor. They were developed as non-addictive alternatives to morphine, but many believe that they are in fact more addictive, and are responsible for introducing many people to opiates.

Culture notes

It is estimated that roughly 58,000 Americans died in the Vietnam war, which lasted from 1954 to about 1973. However, it is estimated that over 2 million people in total were killed in the war on both sides, including civilians.

 

Respond

Respond

Recommendations

  • 7 mins
  • Pair, Group
  • Discussion


Student instructions

No instructions


Teacher notes

The aim of this activity is to give students the opportunity to react to the ideas from the news report according to their own opinions.

For question 3, encourage students to look back at Lead in and discuss whether their opinions have changed after watching the video.

 

Follow up

Follow up

Recommendations

  • 15 mins
  • Group, Class
  • Writing, open


Student instructions

No instructions


Teacher notes

The aim of this activity is for students to research drug and narcotics issues in more depth.

Students can look at the example drug awareness websites, or find their own.

 

Exit ticket

Exit ticket

Recommendations

  • 3 mins
  • Individual
  • Multiple choice, open


Student instructions

No instructions


Teacher notes

The aim of this activity is for students to consider how their knowledge of the topic has improved during the lesson.

 
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