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ESL listening lesson plan for TESOL TESL TEFL communicative classes

This listening / discussion class incorporates web-based homework to help students improve accuracy and complexity. After the class students will have seen that this is very helpful and may be receptive to a teacher encouraging them to discuss conversation class topics on the web before coming to class.

ESL's Iron Lady class

Objective- To learn and remember ten vocabulary words and practice analyzing and using the passive voice.

Listen to the song which is about the death penalty, killing criminals to punish them for their crimes. The "Iron Lady" is a metaphor for the electric chair, which is one method of execution in America. Decide if you think the song is for or against the death penalty. Discuss the reasons for your decision with your partner.

Next we're going to examine some vocabulary from the song and then we'll listen to the song in more detail.

strings are pulled A. where condemned prisoners wait to die
death row B. good qualities
the Lord C. the person in charge of a jail
an eye for an eye D. unfairly controlled; manipulated
chaplain E. not worth it because there is no reward
the state F. discourage, try to stop
charms G. says religious prayers but works for an organization (like a government)
doesn't pay H. the government
warden I. God
appeals J. arguments about a court case
deter K. the punishment should be the same as the crime

Fill in the blanks while you listen. You may need to listen more than once.

Have you seen the iron lady's
Legs of steel, leather on her arms
Taking on a man to die
A life for a life,
And death's the iron lady in the chair

Stop the murder, the crimes away
Only killing shows that killing
Yes that's the kind of law it takes
Even though we make mistakes
And sometimes send the wrong man to the chair

In the waiting for their turn
No time to change, not a chance to learn
Waiting for someone to call
Say it's over after all
They won't have to face the justice of the chair

Just before they serve him one last meal
Shave his head, they ask him how he feels
Then the comes to say goodbye
Reporters come to watch him die
Watch him as he's strapped into the chair

And the , he reads the final prayer
Be brave my son, is waiting there
Oh murder is so wrong you see
Both the Bible and the courts agree
That is allowed to murder in the chair

In the courtroom, watch the balance of the scales
If the price is right, there's time for more
The , the switch is stayed
The finest lawyers fees are paid
And a rich man never died upon the chair

Have you seen the iron lady's
Legs of steel, leather on her arms
Taking on a man to die A life for a life,
That's the iron lady in the chair

Try to identify the reasons for the song's argument.

For homework, post one paragraph about your thoughts on the death penalty on the death penalty forum ( You might start like this: "I'm in favor of the death penalty because..." or "I think the death penalty should be abolished because..."

Next class I'll give you some advice on how to improve your English based on what you submitted to the message board. Then we'll have a class discussion so you can try out some of the new language. The aim will be to express your opinion about the death penalty using more accurate and complex language than you would have been able to use before this class.