The cost of War
Description:This lesson plan is organised around the theme of war through the use of a project that outlines the consequences of war. It also includes a short text on the cost of war, pictures and quotes.
Learners: Teenagers, Adults
Language: Talking about events in the past, describing pictures
Skills: Speaking, reading, observing pictures, talking about historical facts.
Materials: text, websites, visual prompts (photographs), quotes.
Step 1: Ask students to look at the pictures presented on the whiteboard. Elicit students’ thoughts and ideas around the pictures. For higher levels students it’s important to ‘stretch’ Ss in order to make the most of their abilities. Write down on the whiteboard any interesting words or phrases that can students learn.
Possible questions to ask:
-where are these people?
-what are they doing?
-how do they feel like?
Step 2: Give out a handout with two pictures. Ask students ‘what can you see in picture A and what in picture B’?. Divide learners in pairs or in groups of 3 and ask them to discuss and write down 5-6 differences about the children’s lives in the pictures. Tell students they have 5mins
Step 3: Elicit students’ answers. Write down on the whiteboard any interesting words or phrases that can students learn.
Step 4: Vocabulary activity: Students work in pairs and match the definition of the words in bold. Monitor and help students if needed by giving them more examples. Elicit the answers and help students with the pronunciation of the words.
A. Vocabulary: Match 1-7 with A-G
1. Her voice reverberatedaround the hall.
2. The violence was the result of political and ethnic conflicts.
3. A camp for refugees fleeing from the war
4. Two soldiers and one civilian were killed in the explosion.
5. The food supplies are inadequate to meet the needs of the hungry.
6. An example ofhostility is a bomb exploding in a crowded marketplace.
7. The bomb devastated much of the old part of the city.
A. to completely destroy a place or an area.
B. acts of fighting in a war
C. (of a sound) to be repeated several times as it is reflected off different surfaces
D. not enough; not good enough.
E. a situation in which people, groups or countries are involved in a serious disagreement or argument.
F. to leave a person or place very quickly, especially because you are afraid of possible danger.
G. a person who is not a member of the armed forces or the police.
Step 5: Tell students that they are going to read about the findings of a project. Don’t tell them what’s the project about. Give them few minute to quickly scan it and complete this sentence:
‘This project is about……..’
The cost of war
The wars begun in 2001 have been painful for millions of people in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Pakistan, and the United States, and economically costly as well. The human costs of these conflictswill reverberate for years to come in each of those four countries. There is no turning the page on the wars with the end of hostilities, and there is even more need as a result to understand what those wars’ consequences are and will be.
Some of the project’s findings:
- armed forces on all sides, contractors, journalists, humanitarian workers and civilians — shows that over 350,000 people have died due to direct war violence, and many more indirectly.
- 220,000 civilians have been killed as a result of the fighting and more will die in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Pakistan as the violence continues.
Millions of people have been displaced and are living in inadequate conditions. The number of war refugees and displaced persons — 6.7 million — is equivalent to all of the people fleeing their homes.
Iraq’s health and education systems remain war-devastated.
Women in both countries are essentially closed out of political power and high rates of female unemployment.
Step four: Ask students the following questions:
-Which are the wars in the text?
-Who are fighting in it?
Step 5: Ask learners to read the text again and try to memorize the four consequences of the wars. Allow students to write 2-3 words in a blank page to help them remember the text. Students take turns and briefly explain the consequences in pairs.
Step 6: Ask students to look at the pictures presented on the whiteboard. Elicit students’ thoughts and ideas around the pictures.
The idea here is to ask learners look on the web and gather some information about the consequences of a particular war. The war we are going to focus on is the ‘Turkish invasion of Cyprus in 1974’ since I’m teaching in Cyprus and students are well-familiar with this war.(Here you can add your own pictures depending on the war you are planning to focus on for this lesson)
Step 6: Divide students into groups and ask them to write down the consequences of this war by searching online. Allow students to visit various websites to gather information. Teachers should have a list of websites in case students are struggling to find any.
Step 7: Discussion: Ask each pair to present a finding, monitor students and encourage them to discuss in order to exploit speaking activities.
In the discussion encourage learners to use the vocabulary learned like (conflicts, civilians, inadequate conditions, war-devastated and so on). Game: write down the words in the whiteboard and give them a point when they use the word to describe a consequence.
Step 8: End the lesson with the following quotes. Allow students to express their final thoughts.