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Why Bring a Child into this World?

Posted on December 2, 2013 by kierandonaghy

why bring a child into this world

This EFL lesson plan is designed around a short film titled Why Bring a Child into this World? commissioned by Unilever, and directed by Oscar-winning director Errol Morris. The theme of the lesson is the question why we would bring children into a world filled with the terrors of war and the desperation of disease and poverty. Students prepare arguments for a debate, debate a question, watch a short film and roleplay.

Language level: Upper Intermediate (B2)– Advanced (C1)

Learner type: Teens and adults

Time: 90 minutes

Activity: Preparing arguments for a debate, debating a question, watching a short film and roleplaying

Topic: Babies, parents

Language: Expressions giving point of view, language connected to children and parents

Materials: Short film and YouTube Comments document

Downloadable materials: why bring a baby into the world lesson instructions     YouTube Comments     

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Step 1

Write the following question on the board?

Why Bring a Child into this World?

 

Step 2

Divide the class into equal numbers of groups of 3 or 4 students. Assign each group as in favour or against bringing a child into this world. Tell students that they have to think of as many arguments in favour or against bringing a child into this world. Tell them that later they will have to try to convince a student from another group with an opposing opinion of their case. Give each group 10 minutes to come up with their arguments and think of how they can put forward their arguments to convince a student of another group of their case.

As students work, monitor and help them with vocabulary and expressions.

 

Step 3

After 10 minutes pair up students with another student who has an opposing view to them. Tell them that they have to try to convince their partner of their case in favour or against bringing a child into the world.

 

Step 4

When students are ready hold a plenary discussion based on the question and write up good arguments in favour and against.

 

Step 5

Tell students they are going to watch a short film titled Why Bring a Child into this World? In the film couples from around the world are brought together and shown positive and negatives aspects of this world which may be factors in determining whether to bring a child into this world.

Tell students that as they watch you would like them to look for any visual representations of the arguments they used in favour and against bringing a child into the world.

Show the film and pause at 04:02.

 

 

Step 6

Get feedback on what arguments students saw represented in the film.

 

Step 7

Tell students they are going to see the film a second time and that this time they should listen for arguments which the narrator and the parents give in favour and against bringing a child into this world.

 

Step 8

Pair students and ask them to compare their answers.

 

Step 9

Ask students the following questions:

Is the film’s message that we should or should not bring children into this world?

Is the message optimistic or pessimistic?

How did the film make you feel?

 

Step 10

Restart the film and pause at 04:05 where you see the caption:

Because there’s never been a time to create a brighter future Unilever is launching Project Sunlight.

Ask students if they know what Unilever is. If students don’t know tell them it is an Anglo-Dutch multi-national consumer goods company. Ask students if the fact that the film was commissioned by a multi-national company changes their opinion of the film. Ask them what they think Project Sunlight is.

 

Step 11

Restart the film and pause at 04:25 where you see the caption:

Take action to make a difference at projectsunlight.com

Click on the link and show students the Project’s website and look at some of the stories. Ask students what they think of the project.

 

Step 12

Tell students that the critical response to the film has been very positive in general. However, there has been some criticism.

 

Step 13

Put students into pairs and assign them as A or B. Give them the worksheet YouTube Comments and ask them to read their comment: A in favour of the ad and B against the ad. After they have read their comment they should role play a discussion about the ad between the 2 people.

 

Step 14

Hold a plenary discussion on the comments.

 

I hope you enjoy the lesson.

Support Film English

Film English remains ad-free and takes many hours a month to research and write, and hundreds of dollars to sustain. If you find any joy or value in it, please consider supporting Film English with a monthly subscription, or by contributing a one-off payment.

Monthly subscription

One-off payment

7 thoughts on “Why Bring a Child into this World?

  1. hello, I cannot seem to find the worksheet with the Youtube A and B discussion points????

    Where can I find them?

    By the way, your lesson plans are fantastic and my adult speaking classes love them (so obviously I do to!)
    Many thanks

  2. Thank you for that. I’ve built a lesson around your materials and going to use it to teach my students how to debate and produce a piece of argumentative writing. Thank you for inspiration!

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