Point to your ear, then to questions 1 and 2 as you say the words:

Class, please listen to a conversation between two people. Tell me: Who are these people? Are they friends?

Play the taped conversation between Sam and Ken. Elicit answers to the questions on the road Then play the tape a second time. This time listen to find out what they are talking about.

After establishing that someone has died, distribute Handout #1, a copy of the transcribed conversation, to each student.

Today, we talk about what to say in English when someone dies. We call this, "Expressing sympathy."

(Write these two words and the definition on the board as you speak: Kind words to comfort a sad person when someone has died.)

Ask students to fold their paper so they see only the new words and phrases at the top. Show them what to do.

die, died

To stop breathing; to stop living.

pass, passed away

Another way to say "die"

miss, missed

To be sad about the absence of some person, place, or thing. For example, if you take a long trip, you miss your family or friends. If you live in another country, you miss your country-its food and customs. If a loved one-family member or friend-dies, you miss seeing and talking to this person.

remember, remembered

To think about something or someone in the past


The ceremony of burying a dead person's body (putting it in the ground) or burning it (cremating and keeping the ashes)


The custom for friends to visit the family of the dead person (usually the night before the funeral)

I'm so sorry.

A way to express sympathy (kind words to say to a sad person)

Tell me about it.

A way to be a friend-to invite someone to talk to you

I'm sorry I'm crying.

A way to apologize for your actions. (Dramatize:) I'm sorry I stepped on your toe. I'm sorry I'm late for dinner. I'm sorry I don't have my homework.

That's O.K.

Words to help someone feel better.

Write on the board "That's OK = Don't worry/No problem"

1 Point to and clarify meaning for questions 3, 4 and 5 on the board. Play the tape once again and ask the students to answer these questions.

3. Who died?
4. When did he die?
5. When will the funeral be?

2 After eliciting response to the questions above, ask students to circle five words or phrases about "time." (i.e., yesterday, last night, tomorrow, in the evening, and the next day). As you go over these, use a current calendar to show their relativity.

3 In this conversation, the word will is used five times to talk about future tense. Ask students to underline all five. Then ask :

What other way can we talk about future tense? (with the use of be+going to)

If clarification is needed, draw the following on the board to illustrate:

!!!More Advanced!!!

Ask students to rewrite these five sentences using going to in place of will. If pressed for time, do this orally with the whole class. With more advanced students, use Handout #4 talk about irregular past tense verb forms.

4 Read the entire conversation, one line at a time, asking students to repeat after you. Work for pronunciation as well as appropriate stress and intonation. Divide the class into pairs-one person reading the words of Sam, the other the words of Ken. Then switch parts-so each student will "go both ways."

1 Give each pair of students one copy of the Rosalie Berg obituary from the newspaper and a single copy of the questionnaire (Handout # 3) for each pair of students. After reading through the questions and discussing their meaning, ask students to work in pairs to find answers to the questions on the handout. When finished, go over the answers with the class.

2 Ask students in small groups to talk about how obituary writing style is the same or different in their country and in the U.S.

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