Listening for specific information and recognising context.


Accents Speed Activity type Time
American Slow gap fill 25 minutes


Theme: Radio and television advertisements
Skills: Listening for specific information, recognising context
Level: Elementary
Grammar focus: Present simple, opening/closing times, leisure activities
Vocabulary: shopping, store, open, close, crazy, tennis, soccer, swimming, fitness center, danger, movie theater, days of the week, times.
Preparation: Download the worksheet and make one copy for every student.


  1. Tell students you are going to play a recording and they must listen and identify the genre (i.e. is it a college lecture, conversation between friends, etc.) and where they think they might hear it. Play the recording.

They are advertisements, from the radio

  1. Ask students how many advertisements they heard (there are three) and then tell them to listen again and write the name of each place that is advertised. When students are ready, play the recording.

Barker's Department Store, Greenwood Fitness Center, Club 100 Movie Theater

  1. Give each student a copy of Worksheet 4 and allow them time to study the information. Explain they must listen again and complete the missing information. Play the recording, then put students into pairs to check their answers.
  2. Play the recording one final time, if necessary, then check students' answers.

Barker's Department Store:
opens at 9am, closes at 6pm, closed on Sundays

Greenwood Fitness Center:
next to Greenwood Station, opens at 7am, closes at 8.30pm, open Monday-Saturday

Club 100 Movie Theater:
movie title D for Danger, starts at 9.45pm on Friday

Bonus question:
tennis, soccer, swimming

Post-listening tasks

  1. Put students into groups and tell them to make their own radio advertisement. They should choose a leisure activity (e.g. playing tennis), invent the place (e.g. Sun Valley Tennis Club) and write the text for a radio advertisement. Explain they should include the opening and closing times too. They should try to make their advertisement as ‘catchy’ as they can. You may wish to photocopy the recording script for them to use as a guide (point out that key information is often repeated in this kind of advertisement, and tell students to do the same).
  2. Give groups time to create their advertisement, providing help where necessary. When they finish, tell students to practice reading aloud their advertisement and encourage them to use sound effects where possible. Then have each group present their advertisement to the class. (If possible, you may wish to record each advertisement onto cassette and then play them all to the class). After each one, ask questions to review key information and check students understand what is being advertised. The class should then finish by voting for the best advertisement.
  3. Put students into groups and tell them to make a list of all the leisure activities they can think of. Give them a time limit of one minute, then ask one group to write all their ideas on the board. Tell the rest of the class to check spelling and call out any additional leisure activities they know. Review spelling and then model pronunciation as students repeat in a choral drill. Put students into groups and tell them to talk about which leisure activities they enjoy. They should say when and where they do each activity, and explain the reasons why they enjoy it.