Teaching Speaking: Planning a weekend trip
Cath McLellan is a teacher and English language materials developer in Barcelona, Spain. We are very happy that she decided to produce some material for Premier Skills English.
This lesson focuses on speaking skills and making suggestions. There are language tasks and activities for your students, a focus on pronunciation, a main speaking task and extension activities.
Find the full lesson plan and all the worksheets you need in the downloads section on the right-hand side of this page.
Last year over 800,000 tourists to the UK went to watch a football match as part of their visit. In this lesson, learners will discuss options for a weekend trip to the UK, talking about likes and dislikes and discuss an itinerary. By the end of the lesson, students will be able to make suggestions, talk about likes and dislikes, find out about different UK cities and make a plan for a weekend trip. Learners will use a range of listening, speaking and reading skills.
This lesson links to the club pages on the Premier Skills English website where you can find out more about each Premier League club, the stadium they play in and the city where each club is based.
B1 / B2 (intermediate to upper intermediate)
Teenagers and adults
80 - 90 minutes
This lesson is flexible and can be used over two different classes or one 90-minute class. You can also extend or shorten some of the steps depending on the level and needs of your students.
- Worksheet: Planning a weekend trip
- Listening: Audio and transcript
You can find all the materials and a copy of this lesson plan in the download section on the right-hand side of this page.
Introduce the theme of the lesson to the learners:
- Eating local food
- Going shopping
- Going sightseeing
- Relaxing by a pool or at the beach
- Doing some sport or activities
- Watching a concert or going to the theatre
- Going to a football match
- Going to an art gallery or museum
2. Listening for gist
Explain to students that going to see that many tourists go to see football matches as part of their trip to the UK. A Premier League travel agency wants suggestions for things that these people could do in addition to watching a match. First, they are going to listen to (or read a dialogue) of two people planning a weekend trip to Manchester.
Students can listen to see which activities from the lead-in are mentioned. Alternatively, give the students the tapescript and they can do this as a reading activity.
Give feedback and see if there are any activities that weren't mentioned.
Answers: Eating local food, going shopping, going sightseeing, going to an art gallery or a museum, going to a football match.
3. Listening for detail
Go through the sentences in Activity 1 on the worksheet. Ask students to listen (or read) again, this time listening for who mentions each activity. Tell students to write K for Kerry, J for John, or N if it is not mentioned.
Going to a local pub - K
Getting up early - J
Practising English - N
Going to independent shops - K
Going to a football museum - K
Going to see some paintings - N
Visiting a famous building - K
Doing a cooking class - N
Staying out late - J
4. Focus on Language (Guided Discovery)
Tell students to look at Activity 2 on the worksheet. In pairs, they should underline the phrases in the transcript for making suggestions, saying what you like and saying what you don't like and complete the table. Check the answers.
Shall we ...?
We should ...
Sounds like your kind of thing.
I could ...
Why don't we ...
Saying what you like
I'd like to ...
I'd definitely like to ...
I wouldn't mind that at all.
I'd be up for ...
Saying what you don't like
I'm not that into ...
I think I'd prefer ...
Ask students if they can add any other phrases to each category and get feedback.
5. Focus on Pronunciation
Write up the following sentences from the transcript on the board:
Do you think we should get up early to make the most of the day?
Why don't we check out some of the nightlife?
I wouldn't mind that at all.
What do you think about the football museum?
What do you think?
Do you think we should go for a curry?
Practice drilling these and ask students to underline the stressed words in each sentence. Ask them to identify which words in English carry stress (verbs and nouns and words that carry meaning).
Draw attention to how the 'do you' questions are pronounced in connected speech. Drill the /dʒə/ sound and ask students to practice the phrase 'do you think' as /dʒə'θɪŋk/ and repeat the sentences.
6. Controlled Practice
Students will now practice using the phrases for talking about likes and dislikes. Write two activities on the board, and in pairs, students have to explain which one they prefer and why. Give students a minute to talk about it, then ask for feedback. Encourage them to use the phrases from Activity 3 and say why they like one activity more - for e.g. I'd prefer to watch a football match because I'm not that into playing. I prefer to be in the crowd. Then erase the activities and write up the next two. Choose any activities that you think are relevant to your students. Below are some suggestions:
Would you prefer to ...
- Watch a football match or play a football match?
- Go out for dinner or cook at home?
- Watch a horror film or watch a comedy?
- Meet a famous sports person or meet a famous singer?
- Go on holiday in your own country, or go abroad?
- Eat some cake or eat some chips?
7. Main Task (Planning a weekend trip)
Write 'Itinerary' on the board. Explain what the word means (a plan for a trip; including the places you want to visit).
Ask students to imagine that they are working for a Premier League Travel agency and they want to organise a weekend itinerary to a UK city. They will have to take the trip themselves first and plan an itinerary together and agree on what they would like to do.
Put students in pairs and assign each pair one Fact File (from the worksheet).
Give students time to read the information about their city, and answer any questions about vocabulary.
If you have internet access in class, you can give students extra time to take a look at the web pages and find out more about their city. If they do this, set a time limit (10 - 15 minutes) and ask them to make notes.
Tell students to look back at the table from Activity 2. Remind them to use this language as they are planning their itinerary. They should agree on at least five activities that they want to do over the weekend.
Monitor and at the end of the task give feedback on language use.
8. Extension / Homework
After feedback, you could put students into new pairs and give them a different Fact File, so that they can repeat the activity for a different city. At the end of the task, ask students which city they would be most interested in visiting and why.
Another alternative is to ask students to present their itinerary to the rest of the class or to another pair/group. Ask the students listening to make notes as they listen. At the end, each student can vote on which weekend itinerary they like the best.
We hope you enjoy the lesson!