1,204,986 Votes Decided: What Is The Best Thing? – Tom Scott
In this video from Tom Scott, he surveyed over 1.2 million people to find out what was the best thing! After making a long list of things to rank (7,188) he got people on the internet to vote for items in head-to-head battles. Things that were voted for many times moved to the top of the list. Things that didn’t get voted for got moved to the bottom. Simple!
The speaking is very fast in this but the questions and transcript are fairly simple. Students will have a good opportunity to talk about their favourite things.
This lesson uses the third part of the video from 5:45
Note : If using this in class please note there is a brief mention of sex and orgasms around the 8:30 mark. Easily skippable. Use this skip to pause and ask the students what they think the number one thing is. This part of the video is missing from the transcript.
This video from Vsause tries to answer the question of why, in photos from the past, people seem to look older for their age. What are the reasons for this? Great lesson for talking about generational differences.
This lessons content is upper-intermediate but the questions and tasks could be done by an intermediate student. There are warm-up, listening and followup discussion questions. Download the PDF or Word file below.
In this short documentary for NPR Debbie Naha talks about, collects and cooks dandelions. A “weed” she considers delicious and nutritious. What do you think? This is an upper beginner level lesson. The video will help students find the answers with its fun visuals and text. The narrator has a clear and slow way of talking that will also be easy to understand. There are warm-up questions, listening questions, a transcript and answers. Enjoy!
By the way, I have been getting good feedback on my lessons recently. If you have anything to say please leave a message or send me an email!
This animated short documentary is about how it feels to be a professional football (soccer) goal keeper. It is narrated by Bob Wilson who was a very successful goal keeper.
This lesson has a short introduction, listening questions and a transcript. It is a pre-intermediate and above level but is short so can be watched many times in one class. There are no subtitles with this one but the transcript I have made is accurate (about 90% I hope!). The answers to the questions are on the last page. I suggest this worksheet can be a good supplement to any lesson about sports or about being nervous. Enjoy!
In this video from Lonely Planet the narrator introduces three of Paris’s most romantic places. Students will listen and watch the video to choose the correct details for each of the locations. There is also a discussion about cities and people’s favourite places in them. This is an easier lesson suitable for beginners.
This video from the BBC talks about where weather apps get their information and how it is presented to people. The video also talks about why weather apps can be wrong sometimes.
In the lesson students will talk about using apps, percentage and odds and, of course, bad weather! The listening questions are true and false and the speaking is very clear, so pre-intermediate level students should be able to handle the material. If you are studying alone the answers are at the bottom of the third page.
This video, from Tom Scott, talks about the history of what is the most expensive object in the world by weight. It is very small and very expensive.
More importantly it is ‘non-fungible’ – things means it cannot be split up into smaller parts and keep the same value.
In this lesson students discuss the things they own. How the history of an object is important and if they collect anything. The PDF has comprehension and discussion questions and transcript of the video with answers highlighted. This video is definitely intermediate level English and above.
In this video from Vox the news 2021 is reviewed from an American perspective on the world. Students are asked to discuss the year they have has, talk about how they themselves have changed and answer simple comprehension questions on the video. The vocabulary is relatively simple as are the questions and most pre-intermediate classes and up should be able to comprehend and discuss the ideas in the video.
Advice to Teachers – Please watch this video fully to decide if it is suitable for your classroom. It contains a couple of examples of colourful language and some slight innuendo.
Taskmaster is comedy show in which celebrities and comedian compete to perform crazy tasks set by the task master. In this challenge the five contestants have to hind three aubergines in a room. The longest time to find all three is the winner!
This is a nice simple video that would be a great supplement to any beginner level class on coffee shops or ordering in a cafe. The video has hardcoded subtitles and is only 60 seconds long but has an interesting story and a compelling images. As a follow up activity I had my students leave comments (if they liked) on the artists Instagram. They really enjoyed that.
Play the video
Read the questions – Try to answer from memory
Watch again – check Answers
Where is he originally from?
What did he do before he became a barista?
How do you become a good latte artist?
How much fat should the milk have?
Do you like coffee? How do you take your coffee?
Where do you go if you want to relax and talk with friends?
Which of his pieces of latte art did you like the most?
Want to know how to live to 100? Watch this video from The Infographics Show to hear a summary of research on the subject of living to a ripe a old age.
In this simple lesson plan students will watch the video and read its transcript to answer questions on health and old age. This is followed by a series of discussion questions brought up by the video. The video has embedded subtitles that students can read along with.
Please like and subscribe to The Infographics Show. They have a lot of great content that can be used in classrooms.
Can you guess the age, likes and their past just by looking at them? The simple answer is no.
This video from Soul Pancake shows how wrong first impressions can be. Two people who have never met each other try to guess things about each other. They then find out how wrong they are. However, by the end of the video they have formed a very personal connection with each other.
Students will discuss first impressions. Then they will watch and answer questions on the video. Reading the transcript after will help with comprehension and the video also has subtitles. After the students will discuss some of the question raised in the video.
In this video from Vox they discuss what has made the Japanese Sanrio character Gudetama so popular, They talk about how and why Japanese Kawaii culture developed and how the Japanese notion of cuteness isn’t as simple as the ideas of good and evil in American culture.
Students will discuss characters, cuteness and the stress of modern life.
In this lesson based on a video from NPR Skunkbear they talk about why we still get goosebumps although they have no purpose. Students will talk about fears and react to quotes from famous people on the subject of fear.
In this video, from NPR advice is given on how to best use smart phones with children. However, the advice is good for people of any age. In the lesson plan students will discuss differences in life over the past five years, how they use time and their relationships with screens. Enjoy!
This is documentary by Yoko Okumura about her mother, Yuko. Yuko is obsessed by strawberries. she loves them and loving strawberries can save the world. The passion for strawberries is real and you can feel it when Yuko talks about her favorite fruit. Students will of course discuss fruit but also passions and what makes them happy.
This video by E.J. McLeavey-Fisher is about an Instagramer who takes pictures of dogs in New York. In the film the Instagramer explains how he gets nice pictures of dogs and why he enjoys doing it. Students will discuss pets, Instagram and what they would do if they suddenly had a lot of free time.
In this beautiful animated stop motion short by Tom and Hani, a girl is having trouble giving up on childhood. She wants to stay with her toys. Students will discuss the movie, childhood memories, growing up and, with the grammar ‘used to’ tell others about how life and they were different when they were children.
Start with the warm up picture worksheet
Introduce the movie with the worksheet and discuss
In this video from Lonely Planet they explore what to do on a trip to Wales. Students will discuss travel and what there is to do in there own countries on holiday. Discussion, vocabulary and listening questions on the worksheets in both Word and PDF. Full transcript of the video.
In this video from Al Jazeera English they show and talk about the national sport of Niger – wrestling. Students will discuss sport, practice and preparation. This is an easy class, suitable for lower level students.
In this short film from the BBC a woman living in Siberia discusses why she likes her traditional way of life and what she feels she should do to be a ‘good girl’. This is a one page short lesson that is suitable for lower level students. There is no transcript because subtitles are on the video.
In this lesson, from a report by CNN, students will watch a report on a unique business that helps people relieve stress. Students will discuss the business, video and things related to stress and relaxation.
NPR’s SKUNK BEAR is a wonderful set of video’s that aim to answer people’s interesting science questions. The videos on youTube are great because they come with subtitles in multiple languages. In this lesson students will talk about aging and learn vocabulary for various parts of the body. Enjoy!
In this video made by Vox it is explained why people learn to love spicy food. You also get to see real reactions to eating a very spicy pepper. Students will discuss food and how we learn to love things in the worksheet.
Simon’s Cat is an animated cartoon and book series by the British animator Simon Tofield featuring a hungry house cat who always wants to get his owner to feed him. In this lesson students will discuss pets and then make their own quiz based on a Simon’s Cat Video.
In this video from Nerdwriter the Diderot Effect is discussed. This effect is the feeling you get when you buy a new, expensive, better thing and now all your old stuff looks bad. It causes people to keep buying more and more things. Students will discuss this effect and their own buying habits. This is an advanced lesson.
In this lesson on the theme of mindfulness students will talk about all the little, happy, things that have happened to them in their lives recently. Then they watch and discuss a video on an art project called 365 Days Grateful by Hailey Bartholomew. They can follow up by watching and discussing her TEDTalk.
This is a message just to say hi. I started this site eight years ago as a way to keep all my lessons in one place. It got a few visitors now and then but I did not think much about it – I was just happy a few people had found them interesting enough to use. Over the last two years the amount of people using the site has exploded and recently I decided it needed some love, so I had a new logo made and you may have noticed that it actually has a proper domain name now. All the resources will remain totally free and I hope to have a few more lessons up for you to use soon. If you are a regular user of the site then I would love to hear from you in the messages below. I know there are a lot of you and, to be honest, I have no idea how you all found this place.