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World Environment Day: June 5

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Here is a list of lesson ideas, resources and materials that were shared on the Facebook group in the couple of days before June 5, World Environment Day. There are videos, article, lesson plans and a song for our youngest students.

  1. A three-minute clip from the BBC on Greta Thurnberg: Climate change – the facts (subtitled)  

  2. Story in the Guardian June 4 about a plastic free shopping initiative in the UK  (B2+) And the same story covered by the BBC  – Bring your own containers, says Waitrose  – short article plus vox pops – accessible to B2+ . It might be interesting to compare the two stories.

  3. An animated clip about man and his relationship with nature. Tried and test with young learners in Thailand and shared by Clyde Howle: This is a great video to raise students’ awareness of environmental issues for World Environment Day. My YLs always get very engaged by it and it generates a lot of discussion. I normally pair the students up one facing the screen and one with their back to it and play the video and get those watching to tell their partner everything they see, switching roles half-way through. The second time they watch I get them to remember / list all the environmental problems they see. These can then be elicited on the board and groups can choose an issue and come up with actions / solutions to present to class. (Clyde Fowle, Thailand)

  4. Story from the Good News Network about a German boy who has helped plant 1 million trees  (B1+/B2 with support – adults and teens).

  5. Very short, simple, promotional video with text from the World Economic Forum to kick off discussions about what we can do to fight climate breakdown.

  6. Short article about a Brazilian photo journalist and his wife who reforested land in Brazil  – great before/after photos for discussion.

  7. Short, inspiring article about eco-friendly homes for refugees in Egypt – accessible to B1+/B2 students with support.

  8. For very young learners, the Peppa Pig Recycling Song!   

  9. A lesson on alternatives to plastic by Tyson Seburn based on the following news story:

    (You can also see the lesson described on Tyson’s blog.

    A) Pre-task lexis:

    Show pictures of a grocery market and various ways in which markets or customers (local to learning context) group products together for sale or purchase. Learners discuss modes of grouping and associated vocabulary, not necessarily with environment or plastic as the focus, but anything (e.g. could be ‘in bundles’, ‘in pairs’, ‘with elastics’, collective nouns, etc.). Can be done in comparison with learner home contexts if different.

    B1) Task – Problematisation:
    Learners work together to solve: How can this be done differently – for efficiency? cost? environment?

    B2) Task – Solution, etc.:
    Use attached news item (actually it’s Thailand and Vietnam specifically) to follow-up for reading and source material. Learners could also find other examples online as further support or inspiration. They ultimately write a proposal to a grocer suggesting new methods and justifying with rationale, possibly by referencing these texts.

    The text Sue Annan posted in this group would be a good complement. Another useful story for discussing plastic packaging and its alternatives: Ikea to use packaging made from mushrooms.

  10. From Owain Llewelyn at ELT Sustainable a lesson about plastic in our oceans ” focusses on a lovely video of a breakup…with plastic? Lots of relationship collocations too! ” For B2 and upwards, adults and teens.

If you have any other ideas to share, or if you try any of these out in class, please leave a comment or come over to the Facebook group and join the conversation!

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