Conversation Class Lesson Summary – Winter Olympics 2014 in Sochi

Language and Section: Russian Advanced 13

Date: January 23, 28 and 30 2014

Class theme/topics discussed:

Winter Olympics 2014 in Sochi: optimistic (PART 1), critical (PART 2) and application (PART 3) 

Goal of the class:

Talk about the social and economic aspects of the Olympic games in Russia before the games begin, develop argumentation skills and critical analysis of language

Structure of the class (unless you attach your lesson plan below): 


Activity 1 – Warm-up

Handout 1 – Who do you root for? Who won what? Using Handout 1 we talk about the contents of the official website of the Olympics sports, medals, teams. We also look at for content that the students comment on using the Handout.  What do you watch? Who do you support? Which teams/athletes won what?  – 15 minutes

Activity 2 –  Advantages and disadvantages of holding Olympic games – preparation for the video

Students list advantages and disadvantages of hosting Olympic games (blackboard) 10 minutes

Activity 3 – Video Opinion poll

Before watching: what is the general consensus? What does that tell us about the people organizing the poll? Do they have an agenda? Watch the first half first for a general picture. Then watch question by question and discuss. – 25 minutes

Activity 4 – What would you ask Russian people if you were doing the poll?  Other students try to answer – 10 minutes


Activity 1 – Warm-up – general discussion, classes, news – 15 minutes

Activity 2 – Vocabulary revision (Handout 2) – Taboo game – 10 minutes

Activity 3 – Video Sochi Olympics –  Feast in Time of Plague

Watch once for general comprehension, the speech is very fast but it’s very visual and all the numbers are shown on the screen – 5 minutes

Activity 3 – Article & Discussion (Handout 3) – 30 minutes

Students read an article summarizing foreign press articles about the Sochi Olympics. They each have one main problem to characterize based on the article. General discussion includes comparisons with the previously studied material (the optimistic opinion poll). Analysis of rhetoric strategies and specific language in the article and in the videos.

PART 3 – THE FUTURE – Presenting an application to host the Summer Olympics 2024

Activity After a 5-min warm-up, the students prepare their applications based on the handout (each one gets their own city) for 10 minutes, then each of them presents while the others ask questions.

What technology, media or props did you use? (satellite tv, internet resources, playmobiles, etc.) 

Video, Internet

What worked well in this class? What did not work?

The class went very well because students are interested in the topic. Part 3 (presentation of cities) was especially successful, since students were able to recycle a lot of useful vocabulary from two previous classes. They also practiced their argumentation skills and, most importantly, asking questions.

How could this class be improved/ modified?

Please attach your lesson plan and handouts for this class below – if you used any.

Conversation Class_RUSS13_SOCHI_OLYMPICS