Lesson plan overview

Your students will surely have a lot to say about the topic of this lesson: heatwaves. They will learn different ways to say “It’s very hot” and phrases to talk about negative consequences, watch a news report about the heatwave Spain has experienced recently and discuss the topic as the lesson is packed with speaking activities. This lesson works great in combination with other environmental lesson plans such as: “Tackling rising sea levels“, “Stop food waste”, “How we get tree planting wrong”, “Greenwashing” as well as the worksheets “Phrasal verbs: the environment”,  “Idioms: the summer”, and “Phrasal verbs: natural disasters“.
Vocabulary: After an initial discussion, students are learn different ways to say “it’s very hot” (e.g. it’s boiling, it’s a scorcher, it’s like an oven outside). To practise, students are encouraged to use different phrases and talk about the temperature in different places and seasons.
Next, students learn useful phrases to talk about negative consequences (e.g. put a strain on, lead to, result in) and they use them to brainstorm the negative effects of 3 related climate events: droughts, heatwaves and wildfires. Following this activity, students look at other examples of negative consequences and match the words in bold to their definitions (shortage, strain, blackout). This activity serves as a pre-listening activity. As a speaking practice, students complete a few questions given and discuss them. That way they are also asked to predict the information they are going to hear in the video.
Listening: Students watch a news report “40°C: Record breaking April temperatures worsen Spain’s drought crisis”. (once or twice) and answer y7 questions. After that they discuss the video.
Word formation: To further practise the target vocabulary from this lesson, students complete a word formation exercise.
The last activity is a speaking activity: students are asked to create an awareness campaign on one of 3 topics given and present it to the class.
As usual, the lesson concludes with a few moments to reflect and five feedback.
3 research topics are suggested to encourage independent learning that will reinforce the vocabulary and students’ knowledge about the topic.

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Teacher’s lesson plan

Student’s worksheet

Student’s interactive PDF

Conversation cards PDF

Pre-class activities

To send the pre-class activities to your students, copy the link below.


Vocabulary matching


The first time you watch the video, pay special attention to the correct pronunciation of the words in red:

When we think about climate change, we often talk about how hot things are getting.
A few hours of physical activity outdoors could be fatal.
7% of kidney disease hospitalisations could be linked to rising heat.
…and not just for heatstroke and dehydration, but also…
High temperatures during pregnancy are linked to premature births, and antibiotic resistance also rises.

Comprehension questions

In-class activities

Teacher’s lesson plan
Student’s worksheet

Conversation cards PDF

Student’s interactive PDF

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