Breaking News — and using it in class

December 2012

Monty Python
And now for something completely different

Reading the news is a lovely activity to do in class. I doesn’t require much effort from the teacher but the learners get a lot from it.

We all know pictures are great for ESL students and this task really brings out the best in their imaginations and communication skills. Get a selection of striking images, e.g. a train crash, rioting, floods, poverty, a cat stuck in a tree, a picture of the POTUS, etc. Put students into groups of four or five. Specialize the roles: anchorman/woman, outside reporter, interviewees / witnesses, and a studio expert.

Act it out.


Get each team to perform twice — they always do it better the second time.

Play some dramatic news music before each turn.

Film it and get them to look into the camera.